Elixir, by Ted Galdi, is an excellent first novel by this young writer. The writing shows a maturity and style that usually only comes with time and experience. Suspense is a difficult genre to master because of the extensive plotting and mapping techniques needed to make it successful. Additionally, the characters must have a sense of reality to them or it simply does not work. Galdi has done a masterful job at tackling these challenges in his debut novel. Kudos to him and all of his efforts.
Beyond the particulars and obvious elements of this book, at the core of it is a very human story. It is about growing up in a world where you are out of place…masking abilities so that you can fit in; falling in love, overcoming obstacles, and finding acceptance. It is a common and relatable story, told in an uncommon and remarkable way.
Elixir, by Ted Galdi, is a remarkable first novel, and the expectation for his second book will be extremely high.
Meet 14-year-old Sean Malone. He has an IQ above 200, a full-ride scholarship to one of the country’s top universities, and more than one million dollars from his winning streak on Jeopardy! However, Sean wishes he could just be normal.
But his life is anything but normal. The US government manipulates him, using him as a codebreaker in pursuit of a drug lord and killing innocent people along the way.
For reasons related to his personal security, Sean finds himself in Rome, building a new life under a new name, abandoning academics, and hiding his genius from everyone. When he’s 18 he falls in love. The thrills begin again when he learns that his girlfriend is critically ill and it’s up to him to use his intellect to find a cure, a battle pitting him against a multi-billion-dollar pharmaceutical company and the demons of his past.
Elixir is a story about identity, secrets, and above all, love.