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Becoming Samantha Colt
Ken Cressman, author
A nameless, homeless girl grows up on the streets of Baltimore. From a painfully young age she must learn to take care of herself, feed and clothe herself, and defend herself from those who would do her harm. When she’s arrested for shoplifting as a teenager she's recruited by a mysterious organization, where she meets David Larkin and everything changes. He becomes her teacher, her mentor, her partner and eventually her best friend. This is the fourth book in the exciting Larkin and Colt adventure series, this time told from her perspective, in her own words, as she learns who she is, what she can do and who she can become.
Reviews
Literary Titan

Ken Cressman, author of Becoming Samantha Colt, has succeeded in creating a character who evokes both pity and something dangerously close to reverence. A 'Jane Doe' in every sense of the word, Colt makes her way through life the only way she knows how and does so from a frighteningly young age. Surviving on her own for almost ten years, she educates herself, uses the nooks and crannies within Baltimore's streets and stores to find refuge, and is virtually oblivious to the passing of time. Colt's life is forever changed when she accepts a job offer from the mysterious Ralph Browning.
     Becoming Samantha Colt captivated my attention within the first lines of paragraph one. Ken Cressman's main character is gradually revealed as Chapter 1 unwinds. He skillfully describes a character I visualized as the polar opposite throughout his opening chapter. The sudden revelation about her age and gender are extremely powerful and spur the reader to continue. Cressman, several times throughout the book, keeps the reader in check by revealing vivid descriptions of self-named Samantha Colt. I loved the tiny adjustments I was forced to make in my visualization of the character. Colt is as strong a character as I have ever seen-strong in both the skills Cressman has given her via his writing and strong as in memorable.
     Cressman's first-person narrative is truly compelling. I found his description of Colt's life on the streets breathtaking. Her struggle to teach herself to read is touching and true-to life. She states, "No one was going to teach me, so I had to teach myself." Environmental print plays a huge part in her self-education-learning from street signs, advertising, and packaging-she succeeds. Colt's description of the effort involved in maneuvering the intricacies of the English language is spot-on.
     Readers are allowed to see Colt experience a myriad of firsts, thus adding to the appeal of her story. From her first car ride to her first sexual experience, Cressman has included it all. My heart ached for the young girl when she realizes that she is sleeping on clean sheets and has clean clothes for the first time.
     The suspense and action Cressman has developed fascinated me from beginning to end. Becoming Samantha Colt is much more than the story of how a young girl survives despite being one of Baltimore's young 'Jane Does.' Her natural survival skills make her the ideal candidate for a job and extensive training with a mysterious group of people working undercover for various government entities. Somehow, Cressman has circumnavigated the typical avenger-type action plot and created a crystal-clear, endearing character in Samantha Colt.
     I feel that Colt's first-person account is compelling and contains all the right elements to make it appealing to a variety of readers. Cressman has succeeded in writing an action story without excessive cursing and vulgarity which I appreciate as a reader. I would like, however, to have seen more character development with Larkin and Cora. Both were strong influences in Colt's newfound family. This is a definite reread for me, and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a fast-paced book with a memorable main character. -Literary Titan

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