Applegate - Book Reviews

***** - Excellent
**** - Good
*** - Okay
** - Bad
* - Terrible
+ - Half-star

Animorphs - The Complete Series
(The Animorphs series, Books 1 - 54, plus Megamorphs 1 - 4)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
****+

DESCRIPTION: The lives of five middle-school-age kids - Jake, Rachel, Marco, Cassie and Tobias - change forever when they meet a dying alien in an abandoned construction site. Prince Elfangor is the last Andalite (a race resembling a blue centaur with extra stalk-eyes and a bladed tail) left in this sector after a space battle with the parasitic Yeerks. The latter are slugs who wrap around a being's brain to become Controllers, taking complete control of their host's actions, thoughts and memories. Anybody could be a Controller; young or old, perfect strangers or closest kin. No one is immune, and no one is safe.
With the loss of Elfangor's fleet, it could be years before more Andalites arrive, by which time the Yeerks will have won. The prince breaks his race's tradition of withholding technological assistance to other species and gives the kids a weapon to fight the invaders: the Andalite technology which allows a person to morph into any animal they can touch. After Elfangor is killed by the evil Visser Three, leader of the invasion and the only Andalite-Controller in the galaxy, these five kids are the only resistance to the Yeerk threat on Earth.

REVIEW: I started reading Kids/Young Adult books (not all the time, just occasionally) after one too many "grown-up" books deteriorated into gratuitous orgies, meaning-of-the-universe dissertations and general dullness. It's quite refreshing to be able to pick up a book which I know won't fall victim to the first two pitfalls. This series came to my attention by passing my own personal screening process, a very technical and strict procedure which is too lengthy to get into here (translation: there was a cat on the cover of the second book.) The first two felt somewhat generic, setting up the characters and world, but there was something more beneath the surface, a hint of wit and intelligence, plus the fact that being able to become an animal is pretty cool as far as gimmicks go. After the third book, I was hooked! Each book in the series rotates through a first-person point of view of the main characters, giving insight into each of the Animorphs' lives and thoughts. Even Tobias (who sacrifices his humanity for the cause after staying in hawk form too long in the first book) and Aximili (a young Andalite whom they pick up in later volumes) get turns in the rotation. Changing viewpoints help keep things from getting stale, and for the most part the series only improves as it continues. The later books are a bit hit-and-miss, most likely due to inconsistent ghostwriters, but overall are still entertaining. Aside from the action, which there's never a shortage of, the characters develop into distinct individuals, capable of learning and growing. With a new installment roughly every month, they gave me a quick fix of action and entertainment.
Bottom line: they're fast, they're fun, and they're addictive!
For reviews of the individual books, please see my auxillary Animorphs Review page. (Adding 58 reviews to this page just seemed like too much...)

You might also enjoy:
Animal-Speak (Ted Andrews, Nonfiction - An extensive look at animals as totems, messengers, and spirit guides)
The Animorphs series - full reviews (K. A. Applegate, YA Fiction - Full reviews of the Animorphs books)
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Fantasy anthology of transformations)
Jaguar Sun (Martha Bourke, YA Fiction - A teen girl meets her jaguar spirit guide and learns that she may be instrumental in saving the world)
The Encyclopedia of World Wildlife (Mike and Peggy Briggs, Nonfiction - An overview of Earth's wild animals and their fragile conservation status)
Ender's Game (Orson Scott Card, YA? Fiction - A child prodigy trains at an orbital station to defend Earth from alien invaders)
The Hunger Games trilogy (Suzanne Collins, YA Fiction - In a dark future, a girl becomes part of a deadly televised "sport")
The X-Files: Fight the Future (Chris Carter, adapted by Elizabeth Hand, Fiction - Two FBI agents investigate alien invaders and a dark conspiracy)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humans of power on Earth)
The Lives of Tao (Wesley Chu, Fiction - A nigh-immortal alien takes an underachieving human host, forcing him into a world of secret warfare)
Half-Human (Bruce Coville editor, YA Fiction - Fantasy anthology of half-humans)
Being a Beast (Charles Foster, Nonfiction - A man attempts to live as various animals to gain insight into how they perceive the world)
The Shadow Children sequence (Margaret Peterson Haddix, YA Fiction - A forbidden third child in a totalitarian future becomes part of an underground resistance)
Pride's Run (Cat Kalen, YA Fiction - A teen werewolf, enslaved by a drug lord, makes a desperate run for freedom)
The Leopard's Daughter (Lee Killough, Fiction - In prehistoric Africa, a warrior girl with a leopard's soul seeks acceptance among humans)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of ordinary children thrust into terrifyingly extraordinary circumstances)
The 2099 series (John Peel, YA Fiction - A computer-dominated future is threatened by conspirators with illegal technology)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Rex Rising (Chrystalla Thoma, YA Fiction - In a dystopian world, parasites twist humans to suit their needs)
The Leviathan trilogy (Scott Westerfield, YA Fiction - An alternate World War I involves advanced walking "Clanker" machines and "Darwinist" fabricated animals)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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The Andalite Chronicles
(The Animorphs series)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
****

DESCRIPTION: Just before his death, the Andalite Prince Elfangor, having given the morphing power to five human children, downloads his death-statement to his ship's computer. This is the story of his first glimpse of the Yeerk War as a young aristh (warrior cadet) under War-Prince Alloran, a veteran of the failed attempt to free the Hork-Bajir of the parasitic Yeerks. Elfangor's tale covers his trip to the home world of the cannibalistic centipede-like Taxxons, most of whom are voluntary collaborators with the Yeerks, and his first encounter with humans. It also tells how he is responsible for the Abomination - the only Andalite-Controller - who is now Visser Three.
Note: This was published between Animorphs 13 and 14. While it's not necessary to read the books in order, references in later Animorphs books make more sense if you do!

REVIEW: I thought it faltered a little in parts, but if you chalk it up to English/Andalite translation errors and just ride out a couple rough spots, it's just as fun as the rest of the series. Lots of action, some seriousness, and touches of humor mark this Animorph prequel. Since I'm writing this after I've read The Hork-Bajir Chronicles, I can say that this is the weaker of the two, but only by a tiny margin. I also can't quite pinpoint why - it's just a feeling. Overall, this book offers an intersting glimpse into the history of one of the most pivotal - if shortest-lived - characters in the series.

You might also enjoy:
Animal-Speak (Ted Andrews, Nonfiction - An extensive look at animals as totems, messengers, and spirit guides)
The Animorphs series - full reviews (K. A. Applegate, YA Fiction - Full reviews of the Animorphs books)
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Fantasy anthology of transformations)
Jaguar Sun (Martha Bourke, YA Fiction - A teen girl meets her jaguar spirit guide and learns that she may be instrumental in saving the world)
The Encyclopedia of World Wildlife (Mike and Peggy Briggs, Nonfiction - An overview of Earth's wild animals and their fragile conservation status)
Ender's Game (Orson Scott Card, Fiction - A child prodigy trains at an orbital station to defend Earth from alien invaders)
The Hunger Games trilogy (Suzanne Collins, YA Fiction - In a dark future, a girl becomes part of a deadly televised "sport")
The X-Files: Fight the Future (Chris Carter, adapted by Elizabeth Hand, Fiction - Two FBI agents investigate alien invaders and a dark conspiracy)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humans of power on Earth)
Half-Human (Bruce Coville editor, YA Fiction - Fantasy anthology of half-humans)
Being a Beast (Charles Foster, Nonfiction - A man attempts to live as various animals to gain insight into how they perceive the world)
The Shadow Children sequence (Margaret Peterson Haddix, YA Fiction - A forbidden third child in a totalitarian future becomes part of an underground resistance)
Pride's Run (Cat Kalen, YA Fiction - A teen werewolf, enslaved by a drug lord, makes a desperate run for freedom)
The Leopard's Daughter (Lee Killough, Fiction - In prehistoric Africa, a warrior girl with a leopard's soul seeks acceptance among humans)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of ordinary children thrust into terrifyingly extraordinary circumstances)
The 2099 series (John Peel, YA Fiction - A computer-dominated future is threatened by conspirators with illegal technology)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
ExtraNormal (Suze Reese, YA Fiction - An alien teen girl on an undercover mission finds herself drawn to a human boy)
Rex Rising (Chrystalla Thoma, YA Fiction - In a dystopian world, parasites twist humans to suit their needs)
The Leviathan trilogy (Scott Westerfield, YA Fiction - An alternate World War I involves advanced walking "Clanker" machines and "Darwinist" fabricated animals)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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The Hork-Bajir Chronicles
(The Animorphs series)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
*****

DESCRIPTION: Aldrea is the daughter of the Andalite Prince Seerow, whose good intentions in offering the Yeerks higher technology backfired horribly. Because of him, the parasitic Yeerks have spread across the galaxy, enslaving millions of aliens in the expansion of their empire. Relegated to humiliating assignments because of Seerow's mistake, Aldrea and her family wind up on the planet of the Hork-Bajir, a simple tree-dwelling species whose towering, blade-festooned appearance belies their peaceful nature. No beings as unintelligent as these could be of any significance, which is why Seerow's family is sent to study them.
Dak Hamee is a Hork-Bajir seer, a rare genetic anomaly with intelligence to rival the Andalites. The Hork-Bajir believe that a seer is born when the people need to learn a new way, but Dak has no idea what he was born to teach them. His joy at finding his purpose - introducing his race to the Andalites and their higher knowledge - turns into a nightmare when the Yeerks arrive, and the Hork-Bajir look to their seer for guidance.
Esplin 9466 is the Yeerk who eventually becomes Visser Three, telling the story from his perspective. He is both excited and ambitious as his people explore new hosts and start building their Empire... and the Hork-Bajir might prove to be the greatest find in their growing arsenal of enslaved species.
Note: This was published between Animorphs 22 and 23. While it's not necessary to read the books in order, references in later Animorphs books make more sense if you do!

REVIEW: Anyone who reads the Animorphs series knows how this one has to end, but it actually comes across as an upbeat tale. Dak Hamee loses his people many times over, and not just to the Yeerks who covet their bladed bodies as the ultimate warrior hosts. Aldrea must overcome her own anger and prejudices to do what's right. Even the parts of the story told by Esplin 9466 were interesting, filling in a side of the struggle which the series has only touched on elsewhere. Despite the darkness, hope springs eternal. People who haven't read Animorphs probably wouldn't understand it, but I have, and I'm the reviewer here, so I gave it top marks.

You might also enjoy:
Animal-Speak (Ted Andrews, Nonfiction - An extensive look at animals as totems, messengers, and spirit guides)
The Animorphs series - full reviews (K. A. Applegate, YA Fiction - Full reviews of the Animorphs books)
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Fantasy anthology of transformations)
Jaguar Sun (Martha Bourke, YA Fiction - A teen girl meets her jaguar spirit guide and learns that she may be instrumental in saving the world)
The Encyclopedia of World Wildlife (Mike and Peggy Briggs, Nonfiction - An overview of Earth's wild animals and their fragile conservation status)
Ender's Game (Orson Scott Card, Fiction - A child prodigy trains at an orbital station to defend Earth from alien invaders)
The Hunger Games trilogy (Suzanne Collins, YA Fiction - In a dark future, a girl becomes part of a deadly televised "sport")
The X-Files: Fight the Future (Chris Carter, adapted by Elizabeth Hand, Fiction - Two FBI agents investigate alien invaders and a dark conspiracy)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humans of power on Earth)
Half-Human (Bruce Coville editor, YA Fiction - Fantasy anthology of half-humans)
Being a Beast (Charles Foster, Nonfiction - A man attempts to live as various animals to gain insight into how they perceive the world)
The Shadow Children sequence (Margaret Peterson Haddix, YA Fiction - A forbidden third child in a totalitarian future becomes part of an underground resistance)
Pride's Run (Cat Kalen, YA Fiction - A teen werewolf, enslaved by a drug lord, makes a desperate run for freedom)
The Leopard's Daughter (Lee Killough, Fiction - In prehistoric Africa, a warrior girl with a leopard's soul seeks acceptance among humans)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of ordinary children thrust into terrifyingly extraordinary circumstances)
The 2099 series (John Peel, YA Fiction - A computer-dominated future is threatened by conspirators with illegal technology)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
ExtraNormal (Suze Reese, YA Fiction - An alien teen girl on an undercover mission finds herself drawn to a human boy)
Rex Rising (Chrystalla Thoma, YA Fiction - In a dystopian world, parasites twist humans to suit their needs)
The Leviathan trilogy (Scott Westerfield, YA Fiction - An alternate World War I involves advanced walking "Clanker" machines and "Darwinist" fabricated animals)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Visser
(The Animorph series)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
*****

DESCRIPTION: Edriss 526 is a very special Yeerk. It was she who first tracked down the planet called Earth, home of so many potential hosts for her parasitic species to infest. It was she who became the first human-Controller. It was she who set up the secretive invasion of Earth, a task now led by the Andalite-Controller Visser Three. But now, Edriss 526, also known as Visser One, stands on trial for treason before the Council of Thirteen. If found guilty, it could spell the end for her and her human host Eva. This is the story of the Yeerk invasion of Earth, told by the Yeerk who started it all.. the first Yeerk to discover just the weaknesses - and strengths - of the human spirit.
Note: This was published between Animorphs 35 and 36. While it's not necessary to read the books in order, references in later Animorphs books make more sense if you do!

REVIEW: Though a dark tale of deception, control and betrayal, it is nevertheless very good. The ending is not as upbeat as her other tales, and the rays of hope shine stark and bleak against the greater background. I almost wished she had told parts of it in more detail, perhaps from her companion Yeerk's point of view. There are a couple other aspects that I wanted elaborated on, but I can't complain. Another great story from author Applegate. I also must note that the cover on the hardback version is wonderfully shiny!

You might also enjoy:
Animal-Speak (Ted Andrews, Nonfiction - An extensive look at animals as totems, messengers, and spirit guides)
The Animorphs series - full reviews (K. A. Applegate, YA Fiction - Full reviews of the Animorphs books)
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Fantasy anthology of transformations)
Jaguar Sun (Martha Bourke, YA Fiction - A teen girl meets her jaguar spirit guide and learns that she may be instrumental in saving the world)
The Encyclopedia of World Wildlife (Mike and Peggy Briggs, Nonfiction - An overview of Earth's wild animals and their fragile conservation status)
Ender's Game (Orson Scott Card, Fiction - A child prodigy trains at an orbital station to defend Earth from alien invaders)
The Hunger Games trilogy (Suzanne Collins, YA Fiction - In a dark future, a girl becomes part of a deadly televised "sport")
The X-Files: Fight the Future (Chris Carter, adapted by Elizabeth Hand, Fiction - Two FBI agents investigate alien invaders and a dark conspiracy)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humans of power on Earth)
The Lives of Tao (Wesley Chu, Fiction - A nigh-immortal alien takes an underachieving human host, forcing him into a world of secret warfare)
Half-Human (Bruce Coville editor, YA Fiction - Fantasy anthology of half-humans)
Being a Beast (Charles Foster, Nonfiction - A man attempts to live as various animals to gain insight into how they perceive the world)
The Shadow Children sequence (Margaret Peterson Haddix, YA Fiction - A forbidden third child in a totalitarian future becomes part of an underground resistance)
Pride's Run (Cat Kalen, YA Fiction - A teen werewolf, enslaved by a drug lord, makes a desperate run for freedom)
The Leopard's Daughter (Lee Killough, Fiction - In prehistoric Africa, a warrior girl with a leopard's soul seeks acceptance among humans)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of ordinary children thrust into terrifyingly extraordinary circumstances)
The 2099 series (John Peel, YA Fiction - A computer-dominated future is threatened by conspirators with illegal technology)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Rex Rising (Chrystalla Thoma, YA Fiction - In a dystopian world, parasites twist humans to suit their needs)
The Leviathan trilogy (Scott Westerfield, YA Fiction - An alternate World War I involves advanced walking "Clanker" machines and "Darwinist" fabricated animals)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


The Ellimist Chronicles
(The Animorphs series)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
****

DESCRIPTION: He is called the Ellimist, a seemingly immortal interstellar meddler, sworn enemy of the evil Crayak. He appears from nowhere, making the most unexpected offers in the most unexpected situations, and the Animorphs both respect and distrust his word. Though they recognize Crayak as an enemy, the Ellimist is far too much of an enigma to call a friend. He is known throughout the galaxy, sometimes feared, sometimes worshipped, sometimes hated, but never understood. Until now.
Toomin, a young Ketran, is a slacker, obsessed - like many his age - with his race's uninet and its many games, where he goes by the screen name of "Ellimist." When his people begins to develop an interstellar ship of their own, like those of the few offworlders to visit Ket, he never expects to be picked for even nonessential crew... but, somehow, his name ends up ont he list, thanks to an influential and enigmatic friend. He is about to begin a journey that will take him light-years and eons from the crystal sphere he calls home, as a gamer in a contest with the highest stakes the galaxy has ever known.
Note: This was published between Animorphs 46 and 47. While it's not necessary to read the books in order, references in later Animorphs books make more sense if you do!

REVIEW: As usual, Applegate delivers an unexpected story behind one of her more intriguing characters. This one gives grim shades of things to come in her Animorphs series, but one of the points of the book is that the struggle between Earth and the Yeerks is but a small part of a much greater and much older game. Overall, an excellent outing, even if it is shorter and slightly less satisfying than her other "extra" stories.

You might also enjoy:
Animal-Speak (Ted Andrews, Nonfiction - An extensive look at animals as totems, messengers, and spirit guides)
The Animorphs series - full reviews (K. A. Applegate, YA Fiction - Full reviews of the Animorphs books)
Strange Happenings (Avi, YA Fiction - Fantasy anthology of transformations)
Jaguar Sun (Martha Bourke, YA Fiction - A teen girl meets her jaguar spirit guide and learns that she may be instrumental in saving the world)
The Encyclopedia of World Wildlife (Mike and Peggy Briggs, Nonfiction - An overview of Earth's wild animals and their fragile conservation status)
Ender's Game (Orson Scott Card, Fiction - A child prodigy trains at an orbital station to defend Earth from alien invaders)
The Hunger Games trilogy (Suzanne Collins, YA Fiction - In a dark future, a girl becomes part of a deadly televised "sport")
The X-Files: Fight the Future (Chris Carter, adapted by Elizabeth Hand, Fiction - Two FBI agents investigate alien invaders and a dark conspiracy)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humans of power on Earth)
Half-Human (Bruce Coville editor, YA Fiction - Fantasy anthology of half-humans)
Being a Beast (Charles Foster, Nonfiction - A man attempts to live as various animals to gain insight into how they perceive the world)
The Shadow Children sequence (Margaret Peterson Haddix, YA Fiction - A forbidden third child in a totalitarian future becomes part of an underground resistance)
Pride's Run (Cat Kalen, YA Fiction - A teen werewolf, enslaved by a drug lord, makes a desperate run for freedom)
The Leopard's Daughter (Lee Killough, Fiction - In prehistoric Africa, a warrior girl with a leopard's soul seeks acceptance among humans)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of ordinary children thrust into terrifyingly extraordinary circumstances)
The 2099 series (John Peel, YA Fiction - A computer-dominated future is threatened by conspirators with illegal technology)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Rex Rising (Chrystalla Thoma, YA Fiction - In a dystopian world, parasites twist humans to suit their needs)
The Leviathan trilogy (Scott Westerfield, YA Fiction - An alternate World War I involves advanced walking "Clanker" machines and "Darwinist" fabricated animals)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Alternamorphs - The First Journey
(The Animorphs series)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
***

DESCRIPTION: This "choose-your-own-adventure"-style book stars you as an Animorph. In this version, you are in the abandoned construction site with Jake and the others when Prince Elfangor's crippled ship lands. You are there when the Andalite warrior offers a handful of humans the power to fight the Yeerks. You become one of the Animorphs, a kid with the Andalite technology that allows you to become any animal you can touch. Do you have what it takes to fight the Yeerk invasion?
This book follows you, the rookie Animorph, through two adventures. The first puts you in the alternate version of the first book. The second is a follow-up on a later Animorph story. You choose your animal morphs, but choose with care, for - as the Animorphs quickly discover - the Yeerks are not the only threat you'll face.
Though part of the Animorphs series, this book exists on an independent timeline.

REVIEW: When I was younger, I loved the Choose Your Own Adventure books (well, most of them, but that's another review for another time.) The basic idea was the same as this book: read the story, make a choice at a critical plot point, turn to the page indicated, and read the results. I could read them over and over, getting a different story each time. They allowed for variable endings, happy and sad, and one "wrong" move didn't necessarily negate your chances of a reasonably satisfactory conclusion.
Now, I know from the official web site that Applegate turns out one Animorph book a month, six months before the publishing date: an extremely fast turnaround time in the publishing industry, and a difficult pace to keep up. I know that "extra" projects like this book must be squeezed in around this schedule, most likely with the assistance of a ghostwriter or two. Still, I would've appreciated it if she had drawn a little more from the masters of the Choose Your Own Adventure line of books. It was essentially a straight tale, with one answer being right and the others being dead ends. There was no incentive to read it more than once. It was also written to a distinctly lower (or shallower) audience than other Animorph books. The first tale races through the events of the first book, knowing that the reader has "been there, done that" and just wants to get to the end. The second was just as rushed and just as shallow, but at least it wasn't a rehash of what we'd already seen. I also found one pretty major editing flaw near the end of the first adventure. All in all, Alternamorphs was uninspiring, without much in the way of the series' usual charm. What it comes down to is either Applegate doesn't get the concept of alternate-ending books, or she just plain doesn't have the time to properly chart one out.

You might also enjoy:
The Animorphs series - full reviews (K. A. Applegate, YA Fiction - Full reviews of the Animorphs books)
The Adventures of Whatley Tupper: A Choose Your Own... (Daniel Pitts and Rudolph Kerkhoven, Fiction - A custodian at a university has a very bad night in this choose-a-path interactive story)
Dragonology Pocket Adventures (Dugald A. Steer, YA Fiction - Four choose-your-own-story booklets in the Dragonology universe)
The Wizard's Towers (Rhondi Vilott, YA Fiction - A choose-a-path adventure sends you into a wizard's enchanted towers to rescue a princess)
Time Travel Dinosaur (Matt Youngmark, Fiction - A choose-a-path adventure hurls you through multiple timestreams, fighting interdimensional time goblins, mad scientists, and yourself)
The Abominable Snowman/Journey Under the Sea/Space and Beyond/The Lost Jewels of Nabooti/Mystery of the Maya/House of Danger (Choose Your Own Adventure 1-6) (Box Set 1) (The original choose-your-story series, and still the best)

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Alternamorphs 2 - The Next Passage
(The Animorphs series)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
****

DESCRIPTION: This is the second "Alternamorphs" book, a choose-your-own-adventure spin-off of the Animorphs series. In this book, you - not David - are the kid who finds Elfangor's blue box in the construction site. The box with the power to bestow the Andalite technology of morphing, used by Elfangor to create the Animorphs. The box that both Visser Three and the Animorphs will go to great lengths to retrieve. Will you do better than he did with the power and responsibility that comes with morphing?
Though part of the Animorphs series, this book exists on an independent timeline.

REVIEW: This was a much better book than the first Alternamorphs. It wasn't as simple as one choice being right and the other being immediately lethal. Once again, there are two adventures involved, both taken from previous Animorph books, but it didn't feel as trite as the last one. It also didn't seem quite as condescending, if I may use that term. True, it used the same premises as two previous stories, but enough was altered to make for a (mostly) original adventure. Still not quite at the level of complexity that some of the original Choose-Your-Own-Adventure books reached, but this story is one I am not hesitant to place in the same category as Applegate's other books.

You might also enjoy:
The Animorphs series - full reviews (K. A. Applegate, YA Fiction - Full reviews of the Animorphs books)
The Adventures of Whatley Tupper: A Choose Your Own... (Daniel Pitts and Rudolph Kerkhoven, Fiction - A custodian at a university has a very bad night in this choose-a-path interactive story)
Dragonology Pocket Adventures (Dugald A. Steer, YA Fiction - Four choose-your-own-story booklets in the Dragonology universe)
The Wizard's Towers (Rhondi Vilott, YA Fiction - A choose-a-path adventure sends you into a wizard's enchanted towers to rescue a princess)
Time Travel Dinosaur (Matt Youngmark, Fiction - A choose-a-path adventure hurls you through multiple timestreams, fighting interdimensional time goblins, mad scientists, and yourself)
The Abominable Snowman/Journey Under the Sea/Space and Beyond/The Lost Jewels of Nabooti/Mystery of the Maya/House of Danger (Choose Your Own Adventure 1-6) (Box Set 1) (The original series, and still the best)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Search for Senna
(The Everworld series, Book 1)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: David, Christopher, April, and Jalil aren't exactly friends. David, the new kid in school, is a junior with a reputation for being tough. Christopher is on the basketball team, known for his wit and, since sophomore year, for being the boyfriend of Senna Wales, a mysteriously reclusive student. Outgoing April is Senna's half-sister, her exuberance more than making up for her sibling's quiet demeanor. Jalil is a teen driven by logic and self-preservation, with little room for mystery or pity. What binds them is Senna, about whom nobody seems to know much. Aloof, quiet, inscrutable, sometimes impossibly cruel and cold and sometimes irresistibly charming, she seems to belong to another world. She just might...
Drawn by forces they hardly understand, the four high school juniors come together to see Senna abducted from this world. Caught in the backwash of a powerful magick, they are pulled into a world where the rules of logic and reality do not seem to apply. After a narrow escape from Loki, the Viking god of destruction, they find themselves lost and alone in a strange land, where gods of ancient Earth mingle and clash with gods from alien worlds. If they are ever to return home, they must find Senna before her enemies do - that is, if she doesn't turn out to be their greatest enemy herself.

REVIEW: I hesitated in marking this as a Kids/Young Adult book, even though that's where it's stocked in the stores. It is definitely aimed at an older audience than her sci-fi series Animorphs. After a confused and slow start, Everworld evolves into a fascinating tale with a neat concept. It is much grittier and darker than her other works, with characters who would almost be happier ripping each other's throats out than cooperating. In a neat plot trick, the teens find themselves spending time in both the fantastic Everworld and in the real world, where "copies" of themselves somehow continue to exist. This looks to be the start of a promising series.

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Land of Loss
(The Everworld series, Book 2)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Trapped in a world of gods and monsters, the teens David, Christopher, April, and Jalil find themselves in the Americas (or Everworld's equivalent), fighting an Aztec war god and his bloodthirsty people. They still don't know where the elusive Senna is, and they are beginning to suspect that she is not quite as innocent as she tries to seem. If they live long enough to locate her, they will have many questions - not the least of which is how they return home.

REVIEW: I can't say much here without spoiling it and the first book, as Everworld is a serial-format story. Suffice it to say that it certainly lives up to the level of action and darkness set in the first installment. More about the unique nature and inhabitants of the world is slowly revealed, and character tension continues to keep things interesting. I look forward to the next book.

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Alchemyst (Michael Scott, YA Fiction - Modern American twins are pulled into a magical struggle involving godlike Elders, monsters, and immortal mages)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Enter the Enchanted
(The Everworld series, Book 3)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: April, David, Jalil, and Christopher continue their travels through Everworld, this time in the lands inhabited by the tattered remnants of King Arthur's court. Galahad now leads the knights of the Round Table, fighting vainly to keep his former liege's ideals of a unified and peaceful Everworld alive. Though the teens have at last found Senna, they are still in imminent danger, as much from her as from other residents of the fantastic land. The Viking god Loki still pursues them, as does the wizard Merlin, each for their own unknown purposes.

REVIEW: Still a great series, with the plot continuing to thicken and the characters continuing to grow. Highly recommended. (These reviews may seem to be growing skimpy, but I hate spoiler-ridden reviews, and it gets harder to comment in any meaningful way without inadvertently spoiling some plot point.)

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Alchemyst (Michael Scott, YA Fiction - Modern American twins are pulled into a magical struggle involving godlike Elders, monsters, and immortal mages)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Realm of the Reaper
(The Everworld series, Book 4)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Jalil, Christopher, April, and David have been wandering for weeks through the surreal landscape of Everworld. They've lost Senna, they're low on food, and they are completely and thoroughly lost. Their wanderings take them at last to a strange city near a black river. Despite their own bad feelings about the place, they nevertheless investigate, only to find themselves captives in a city owned by Hel, a Norse goddess of the Underworld, whose greatest pleasure is torturing mortals. No one has ever escaped her clutches... at least, not while they are alive.

REVIEW: Another excellent installment in the Everworld series. This tale was better than the previous three, if such is possible. The world continues to grow in complexity, and Applegate delivers compelling yet disturbing updates on ancient mythos.

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Alchemyst (Michael Scott, YA Fiction - Modern American twins are pulled into a magical struggle involving godlike Elders, monsters, and immortal mages)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Discover the Destroyer
(The Everworld series, Book 5)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: David, Christopher, Jalil, April, and Senna, whom they have temporarily relocated, escape the nightmarish world of Hel only to stumble upon the lair of Nidhoggir, the great dragon of the Underworld. In exchange for their lives, the teens agree to reclaim four treasures stolen from his hoard by leprechauns. Though the teens may snicker, Senna points out that there must be a reason such small, seemingly helpless creatures have not only survived in Everworld, but have kept the immense beast Nidhoggir at bay. Nevetheless, with their hearts in Nidhoggir's clutches - literally - they have no choice but to confront the thieves.
Finding Fairy Land is easy. Finding the stolen treasure may kill them.

REVIEW: Another splendid installment in the Everworld saga. Characters continue to grow, the plot continues to thicken, and the story continues to be captivating and unpredictable. Applegate serves up many nice twists on classical lore, honoring the often-dark roots of many beasts and beings from global myths.

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Alchemyst (Michael Scott, YA Fiction - Modern American twins are pulled into a magical struggle involving godlike Elders, monsters, and immortal mages)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Fear the Fantastic
(The Everworld series, Book 6)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Christopher and the others narrowly escaped the arrows of the fairies and the flames of Nidhoggir. They have lost the ever-elusive Senna, but at least they're still alive. Now, they may have jumped out of the frying pan and into the fire, for they have just run straight into the section of Everworld controlled by the evil alien god Ka Anor, whose diet is other gods and whose presence threatens the entirety of Everworld itself.

REVIEW: Another wonderful book in a marvelous series, which again I can't explore in detail here due to the spoiler potential. Applegate continues to give us a rich and unpredictable mythic world, and starts weaving in real-world complications. Great!

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Alchemyst (Michael Scott, YA Fiction - Modern American twins are pulled into a magical struggle involving godlike Elders, monsters, and immortal mages)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Gateway to the Gods
(The Everworld series, Book 7)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: The Chicago teens have been through fire, flood, and Hell - literally - in their journeys through Everworld. Now, at last, they have come to a sanctuary of sorts: Mount Olympus, home of the mighty Zeus and the pantheon of Greek gods. April and the others know the respite won't last long, and it doesn't. Scarcely a day after their arrival, they are told that Olympus is being sieged by the insectlike alien Hetwan, determined to feed the residents to their immortal-eating god Ka Anor. When the teens are thrust onto the front lines, the fate of the gods is in their hands.

REVIEW: Another wonderful installment in the Everworld series. Applegate's characters are definitely growing from their experiences, which is a nice change of pace from some series I've read and/or watched. The stories continue to be action-packed, interesting, and unpredictable in a good way.

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Alchemyst (Michael Scott, YA Fiction - Modern American twins are pulled into a magical struggle involving godlike Elders, monsters, and immortal mages)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Brave the Betrayal
(The Everworld series, Book 8)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Jalil and his companions leave Olympus on a mission that will take them to a witch far more dangerous and powerful than the manipulative Senna. To find her, they must cross a portion of Everworld controlled by ancient African deities, gods who dislike strangers who do not bear gifts.

REVIEW: Again, a surreal and fast-paced story, as unpredictable as ever, weaving in more strange elements from global folklore and Applegate's own imagination. A great installment in a great series.

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Alchemyst (Michael Scott, YA Fiction - Modern American twins are pulled into a magical struggle involving godlike Elders, monsters, and immortal mages)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Inside the Illusion
(The Everworld series, Book 9)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: The teens - Jalil, April, David and Christopher and the witch Senna - have come through their ordeals with the African gods. At last, they arrive at Everworld's version of the Nile. They are seeking Senna's mother, an even more powerful magician than she, in order to fulfill a bargain with the alien Coo-Hatch. This will hardly be a happy reunion, even if there weren't angered gods and looting Amazons to deal with. Senna has never forgotten how her mystical mother dumped her on the doorstep of her normal father, abandoning her in a world full of mundane, magic-blind people, gifted with powers she barely understood. If there's one thing Senna excels at besides manipulating others, it's holding a grudge... that, and exacting revenge.

REVIEW: This is the first - and last - story told from Senna's viewpoint. She is, as expected, quite manipulative, evincing very little in the way of ethics or conscience, but there is - as I've come to expect from Applegate - much more to her story. I thought it meandered a trifle more than the previous Everworld books, possibly because the narrator kept herself separate from so much of the action and the other characters, but all in all it was equally imaginative and unpredictable. I do wonder if Applegate has a conclusion in mind for this series, and how many books she'll take to get there. Not that I'm complaining yet, but her Animorphs series could've benefited from fewer "filler"/ghostwritten books between mytharc advancement stories, and I don't think the far-more-serial Everworld stories would hold up as well with such treatment.

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Alchemyst (Michael Scott, YA Fiction - Modern American twins are pulled into a magical struggle involving godlike Elders, monsters, and immortal mages)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Understand the Unknown
(The Everworld series, Book 10)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: The teens escaped Everworld's version of ancient Egypt, and now must cross the Mediterranean Sea to return to Mt. Olympus. The journey takes a turn for the worse when the sea god Neptune wrecks the vessel, drawing them down into the depths of his underwater city. Here, the mad god intends to keep them for his own amusement... at least, until he kills them.

REVIEW: Though mostly as good as the other books in the series, the formula starts to show a touch of wear here. Enough new information is introduced in the overall story arc to keep things interesting, however, and it still moves at a fair clip.
Shortly after this book came out, Scholastic announced that, because sales weren't what they were hoping, the Everworld series would be "suspended" (read: axed) after Book 12. I suppose they wanted an Animorph-level mega-hit... something which a series like this simply cannot deliver.

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Alchemyst (Michael Scott, YA Fiction - Modern American twins are pulled into a magical struggle involving godlike Elders, monsters, and immortal mages)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Mystify the Magician
(The Everworld series, Book 11)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: Christopher and his companions (and Senna, whom nobody knows whether to call an ally or enemy) have escaped the wrath of the Greek and Roman sea gods, washing up on the shore of Everworld's version of Ireland. Almost immediately, they find themselves in danger, but not from the horrid giant who initially attempts to devour the trespassers. Shortly after the teens' arrival, the giant is slain by a weapon no Everworld god or mortal has ever known, or could ever have developed: a machine gun. It looks like Senna is about to step up her campaign to rule the land of gods and magic, but can four Chicago teens with little more than the clothes on their backs stop her?

REVIEW: All I can say about this is: wow! Amazing! Incredible! And so sad, that Scholastic terminated the series after the next book! Every time I'm sure Applegate has kicked it into the highest gear she possibly can, she manages to ratchet the story up to a new level of tension, excitement, and interest. I wish sales had picked up enough for the publishers to relent and let Everworld finish its proper course.

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Alchemyst (Michael Scott, YA Fiction - Modern American twins are pulled into a magical struggle involving godlike Elders, monsters, and immortal mages)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Everworld: Entertain the End
(The Everworld series, Book 12)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Fantasy
*****

DESCRIPTION: The gateway between the real world and Everworld has been closed, but not before a new evil has been introduced to the land. The "Sennites," fringe-militant types packing real-world armaments, are cutting a swath of destruction through Everworld's version of Ireland. Stranded in a land of gods and magic, they nevertheless have decided to continue their former leader's dreams of bloody conquest, and even the bows of the fairy archers are no match for machine guns and mortars. April and her companions, with the assistance of Merlin, the elfin queen Geowynne, and her half-human daughter Etain, must now deal with this threat before Ka Anor gets wind of the Sennites and recruits them for his own destructive purposes. With the gate closed, the teens are no longer traveling at ease between the real and normal worlds. Soon, one of them (the real-world self or the Everworld self) will fade. The time has come at last for friend and foe alike to choose which side - and which world - to be on.

REVIEW: Due to Scholastic's premature cancellation of this series, Book 12 is the last we will see of Everworld. I want more, but I'm happy with what I have, too. Just enough is resolved that one can walk away feeling somewhat satisfied, but enough potential exists for more works if Scholastic ever gets its head on straight (or Applegate finds a new publisher.) I know I'd still love to read more Everworld adventures, if they're up to this caliber.

You might also enjoy:
The Peculiar (Stefan Bachmann, YA Fiction - A half-faerie changeling boy becomes entangled in a plot that might tear his clockwork world apart)
Abarat (Clive Barker, YA Fiction - A Minnesotan girl travels to the bizarre archipelago of the Abarat)
Peter Pan (James M. Barrie, YA Fiction - The boy who refuses to grow up leads three English children to the magical island of Neverland)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
Storybound (Marissa Burt, YA Fiction - A girl falls into the world of Story)
The Artemis Fowl series (Eoin Colfer, YA Fiction - A boy criminal mastermind pits his wits against the underground Fairy nation)
Magician: Apprentice (Raymond E. Feist, Fiction - An orphan boy in a frontier castle faces otherworldly armies)
Pyramid Scheme (Eric Flint and David Freer, Fiction - An alien probe transports modern Americans to a world of classical myths and gods)
Mythology: A Visual Encyclopedia (Jo Forty, Nonfiction - An exploration of world mythology)
The Tower (J. S. Frankel, YA Fiction - A dying boy stumbles into an alternate Earth, where comic book heroes are real)
The Chrestomanci books and The Merlin Conspiracy (Diana Wynne Jones, YA Fiction - Magicians regularly travel between various worlds and times)
The Divide (Elizabeth Kay, YA Fiction - A sickly boy accidentally falls into a world where magic is real and humans are myths)
The Dark World (Henry Kuttner, Fiction - A World War II vet finds himself in a parallel world of magic, fighting memories of an alternate, evil self)
Doon (Laurie Langdon and Carey Corp, YA Fiction - Two American teen girls find their way to the mystical Scottish kingdom of Doon)
Every Heart a Doorway (Seanan McGuire, YA? Fiction - A teen girl attends a boarding school for children traumatized by adventures in magical worlds... where students start turning up dead)
The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica (James A. Owen, YA Fiction - Three English men, destined to be famed authors, travel to the magical Archipelago of Dreams, inspiration for myth and story since prehistory)
The Encyclopedia of Things that Never Were (Michael Page and Robert Ingpen, Fiction - Compendium of imaginary places, people, gods, and more)
Valkyrie Rising (Ingrid Paulson, YA Fiction - On vacation in Norway, a teenaged American girl discovers her mythological family heritage)
Small Gods (Terry Pratchett, Fiction - An unpromising novice becomes the reluctant prophet for a god whose church has run amok in His name)
Hero for Hire (C. B. Pratt, Fiction - In mythological Greece, the hero Eno the Thracian confronts monsters and dark gods)
Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu (Karen Prince, YA Fiction - Three modern African boys become entangled in magical dangers in a hidden world)
The Takers (R. W. Ridley, YA Fiction - 13-year-old Oz Griffin wakes from a fever to find that invisible monsters, escaped from a dead boy's comic book, have devastated the world)
The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - When their father unleashes imprisoned Egyptian gods, two kids may be all that stands between the modern world and an age of chaos)
The Percy Jackson & the Olympians series (Rick Riordan, YA Fiction - Olympian gods still live, as do their immortal enemies)
Warbreaker (Brandon Sanderson, Fiction - A world of Returned immortals and powerful BioChroma magic stands on the brink of devastating war)
The Alchemyst (Michael Scott, YA Fiction - Modern American twins are pulled into a magical struggle involving godlike Elders, monsters, and immortal mages)
The Rhyme of the Willow series (Justin Sullivan and Samuel Sullivan, YA Fiction - Following a vivid dream, twins find themselves pulled into a dark world where plants run amok)
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (Catherynne M. Valente, YA Fiction - An Omaha girl travels to Fairyland for an Adventure, and finds herself fighting an evil Marquess)
Quintessence (David Walton, Fiction - In an alternate 16th century where alchemy is real, an expedition sails to the very edge of the flat earth)
Mysterious Places (Jennifer Westwood, editor, Nonfiction - Proof that you don't need to leave Earth to find bizarre places)
Mythology: Visual Reference Guide (Philip Wilkinson & Neil Philip, Nonfiction - A quick-reference guide to world mythology)
The 100 Cupboards trilogy (N. D. Wilson, YA Fiction - A boy discovers magical cupboard doors leading to other worlds)
The War of the Flowers (Tad Williams, Fiction - A man enters the fairy world, where magic parallels technology and a war with humanity is on the horizon)
The Birthright series (Joshua Williamson and Andrei Bressan, YA Graphic Novel - A young boy disappears, only to return a year later having grown up in a fantasy world, corrupted by the forces he was supposed to destroy)

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Remnants: The Mayflower Project
(The Remnants series, Book 1)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
*****

DESCRIPTION: It has been coming since the earliest days of human history. Now that it's almost here, nothing can stop it. The asteroid is sixty-seven miles across, dwarfing the rock that took out the dinosaurs. Our most powerful weapons wouldn't put a dent in it. When it hits, it's going to be over, for humanity and quite possibly the planet itself.
While Earth may be doomed, there is one last, desperate light of hope for the human race: the Mayflower Project, a hastily thrown-together collection of experimental equipment on a retrofitted space shuttle. The target is a star that NASA thinks may have a habitable planet orbiting it. Nobody knows for sure - but then, nobody knows if the hibernation beds will work, or if the calculations are remotely accurate, or even if the experimental solar sails that are supposed to get them there will deploy. Only eighty berths are available on this flight, which is most likely just as doomed as Earth is. Naturally, nobody who knows about the Mayflower wants to be left behind.
The clock is ticking... who will make the shuttle? And is it already too late?

REVIEW: Just when I was going into action withdrawal from the end of Animorphs... just when I was getting depressed over the termination of Everworld... Applegate comes to the rescue with a new series, and it shows every sign of living up to her previous high standards. There are several characters of varying ages, none of whom are dull or deadweight, and there's plenty of action in this fast-paced story. I'm looking forward to the Mayflower's planetfall in Book 2.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Remnants: Destination Unknown
(The Remnants series, Book 2)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
*****

DESCRIPTION: It has been five hundred years since Earth was destroyed by a meteor. Five hundred years since the desperate, untested Mayflower Project launched on an aging shuttle, carrying the last eighty humans in the galaxy in a state of hibernation. Now, the shuttle has landed... but where? The survivors awaken to a world so bizarre that they wonder if they might still be in their deathlike sleep. The landscape is split between a riot of Impressionistic color and a stark, black and white wasteland. The shuttle itself landed in an impossible way: on its, tail, in takeoff position, rather than on its belly. Jobs, 2Face, Mo'Steel and the others can't make sense of any of it, but they have no choice but to try. This is their home now, for as long as they can manage to survive.

REVIEW: In a word, bizarre. Applegate comes through with some very peculiar, even creepy concepts and interestingly human characters, in a plot that is, once again, unpredictable in a good way. This is a very wild ride she's set us on. I hope we actually get to see it through to the end.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Remnants: Them
(The Remnants series, Book 3)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
*****

DESCRIPTION: The survivors of the Mayflower group are now divided, both teams heading toward a great structure taken from an artist's interpretation of the Tower of Babel: its existence in this bizarre landscape is all the proof they need that something very, very strange is going on. All know that they are not on some planet, but a spacecraft of impossible proportions. Furthermore, there is a new alien species to contend with - the "Blue Meanies" - in addition to the malicious "Riders" who already killed one Remnant.
The majority of the survivors, in the group with the power-hungry Yago, the military woman Tamara and her unnatural baby, and the girl 2Face - who is struggling to avoid being labeled a freak (and therefore expendable) - see the tower as a defensible structure, the logical place to establish a base of operations. The rest, including the computer geek Jobs, the wild Mo'Steel and his mother, the refined Violet Blake and the nearly comatose (yet disturbingly powerful) boy Billy Weir, believe there is a greater significance to the Tower than just a high point in the landscape. Indeed, there may be an ulterior motive for the entire recreated environment they are in, ripped off from a seemingly random assortment of old Earth artists. The Riders may not be the only things trying to kill the humans off before they can uncover the secrets of the Tower.

REVIEW: The story is moving ahead at a very brisk pace, with a major climax at the end of this book that leads to significant changes in the world and the power structure of the Remnants. It looks like this story won't fall into the "holding pattern" that dominated a fair portion of the run of her other sci-fi series, Animorphs. More like a serial, it has a definite direction and isn't so much an episodic formula as a story broken into several books. Much is revealed, but more mysteries are presented. I'm still looking forward to Book 4.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Remnants: Nowhere Land
(The Remnants series, Book 4)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
*****

DESCRIPTION: The few surviving humans have discovered some interesting things about the strange place where their shuttle landed. It is actually a ship of alien build and colossal proportions, and they are not the only residents. Now, with the destruction of the warped environment the ship's possibly-insane computer created for them, they are truly on alien ground, stuck in the habitat of the hostile creatures nicknamed the Riders. To survive here, they must stand together. Still, forces threaten to divide the Remnants against each other, forces being encouraged by at least one outside source.

REVIEW: Still good. Still bizarre. Still a very interesting, wild ride, even if I can't get much more descriptive without risking spoilers.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Remnants: Mutation
(The Remnants series, Book 5)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
*****

DESCRIPTION: The Remnants have been beset by troubles since they first emerged from the Mayflower shuttle. They have since learned that the different environments of the great ship are all controlled by the onboard computer, known as Mother, and that "she" may not be quite as benign and helpful as she was originally designed to be. If they could find a way to communicate with her, perhaps they have a chance to live, but just reaching the "bridge" may kill them. Besides, who among them can speak to a mad machine... or, more honestly, whose agenda will Mother hear first? For the Remnants still face deep internal schisms which might prove more deadly than anything Mother can throw at them.

REVIEW: What more is there to say? Applegate continues to astound, amaze and impress.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Remnants: Breakdown
(The Remnants series, Book 6)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
*****

DESCRIPTION: Young Billy Weir and Mother, the malfunctioning supercomputer whose artificial environments have been as deadly as they have been surreal, have met at last in a battle of wills. The humans simply want a chance to live without being hunted by Riders or the mad ship. Mother wants new ideas, and to be rid of the recently-returned Blue Meanies, descendents of the former maintenance crew that used to keep her sane. Power-hungry Yago makes Mother an offer she can't refuse. In exchange for power, Yago will help her wage war on the Meanies... but not all of the Remnants want to buy their freedom with death.

REVIEW: Almost too much happens here, but it's still a thrilling ride. I wonder how much longer she can keep up this pace.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

Return to Top of Page - Return to Animorphs Top - Return to Everworld Top - Return to Remnants Top - Return to Book Review List


Remnants: Isolation
(Remnants series, Book 7)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
****+

DESCRIPTION: It's all-out war aboard the great ship run by Mother, the insane supercomputer. The Blue Meanies are fighting the Riders and the Squids, all of whom are against the humans after Mother forced them into war under Yago's leadership. Now, the Remnants split again, one half following Tamara and the unnatural Baby, and the other following 2Face. Both are heading for the same place: the bridge, the heart of the ship, where ultimate control of Mother will be decided.

REVIEW: I think the biggest problem with the Remnants series is that it isn't really a series. It's one story broken into many books, much moreso than most serials. Things would read more smoothly if more books were packaged between the same covers. Otherwise, the action just keeps getting more intense.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Remnants: Mother, May I?
(The Remnants series, Book 8)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
****+

DESCRIPTION: The Riders, the Blue Meanies, and the humans have called an uneasy truce. The Remants now live in an environment crafted specially to their own desires by Mother and Billy. Given the sudden power to do anything and live anywhere that they desire, however, they have drifted into stagnant dreamworlds of their own design... most of them, at least. Yago, still affected by his contact with Mother, secretly meets with rogue Meanies as a new messiah. 2Face still plots to lead the humans against the other races, believing only one will ultimately survive. Jobs still uses Mother's great instrument arrays to search the galaxy for a new Earth to call home. He may have found one... the old one, actually. Getting there will require a course change for the great ship, which violates the terms of the compromise between the species. From this distance, he can't even tell if anything is left on the meteor-devastated planet. Is a return to Earth worth dying for?

REVIEW: Still going strong, Applegate is all over the map here, moving the story forward while kicking up the intensity several notches. I hope she doesn't draw things out too much longer; eventually, it's going to burn itself out.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Remnants: No Place Like Home
(The Remnants series, Book 9)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
****+

DESCRIPTION: The Remnants' course change of the great ship shattered the fragile peace between the three species on board. Now, a new enemy makes itself known: the last missing survivors of the Mayflower, taken from the other humans in the early hours of their revival by unknown forces and kept hidden until now. They seem to have their own agenda... one which may not include the rest of the Remnants.
The question is no longer whether the shattered remains of Earth are worth reaching. It's whether any humans be left alive when the ship gets there.

REVIEW: Applegate seems to be gearing up for a finale in the next two or three books. So far, the quality is remaining fairly consistent, though I still say she should have more books between a single set of covers; it's one story, somewhat forced into a serial format.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Remnants: Lost and Found
(The Remnants series, Book 10)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
****+

DESCRIPTION: The last survivors of the Mayflower have at last, despite violent opposition from the two other alien races aboard Mother and even a trio of mutated humans who have not rejoined with the group for their own unknown reasons, returned to the asteroid-shattered remains of Earth. Any hope of humanity's survival is quickly dashed, as the planet is a half-frozen, half-sunbaked rock with thin air, reduced gravity, and no rotation.
Jobs wants to try to retake Earth, but the others are in shock, their last hopes destroyed. There are those aboard the ship who don't care what condition the planet is in. They just want the Remnants off Mother - for good.

REVIEW: Just when life aboard Mother was threatening to get stale, Applegate throws in more twists and developments. As usual, a wild ride that has me waiting eagerly for the next installment.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Remnants: Dream Storm
(The Remnants series, Book 11)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
*****

DESCRIPTION: Jobs, Mo'Steel, Violet and most of the Remnants were on the ruined surface of Earth when Yago - aided by the Troika, the three humans who have kept separate from the rest of the survivors - marooned them by overpowering Mother. They have little water, almost no food, and no hope of survival beyond a few days. After all, nobody survived the Rock five hundred years ago... or did they?

REVIEW: Just when things couldn't get any worse for the Remnants... I wonder if we'll be seeing Mother again next book. Even if the ship doesn't come back, there is plenty to keep the characters occupied on the ruins of Earth.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Remnants: Aftermath
(The Remnants series, Book 12)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
****

DESCRIPTION: After being abandoned on the remains of Earth and escaping a psychotropic storm, the Remnants find themselves among the last vestiges of humanity. The Alphas, descendants of scientists who hid in buried biospheres when the Rock hit, grow food in underground caverns. The Marauders, consisting of defective Alphas and a few descendents of survivors of the Rock, live on the surface and procure water. Trade between them is tense, but necessary for their mutual survival.
Mo'Steel has become the leader of the Marauders through an act of self-defense, and is now charged with leading the tattered band to the Dark Zone and the territories of the rumored Beasts. Unknown monsters aren't the only enemy waiting for a sign of weakness in the Remnants. Marauders and Alphas alike distrust these newcomers, and on this Earth, there is no room for the unwanted.

REVIEW: I clipped this a point because it felt stretched for some reason. I did enjoy it, but it seemed that less happened in this book. I do hope the author has an ending in mind, as I detect the faint whiff of a series being stretched overlong. As I said before, Applegate (or Scholastic) should really put more of these books between the same covers.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Remnants: Survival
(The Remnants series, Book 13)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
****

DESCRIPTION: After Jobs, Mo'Steel and the rest were abandoned on Earth, Tate was left aboard Mother in the company of Yago and the Troika, the mysterious trio of Amelia, Duncan and Charlie. The Troika's plans to "evolve" involves using their lackey Yago to devour the rest of Mother's inhabitants. Tate included...

REVIEW: It looks like Applegate's definitely headed into the home stretch, here, which is a good thing. Another interesting and unpredictable story, here, filled with action on various levels. The length is telling at this point, however; the energy's definitely feeling more strained.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Remnants: Begin Again
(The Remnants series, Book 14)
K. A. Applegate
Scholastic
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
***

DESCRIPTION: Mo'Steel, Jobs, and the other Remnants are still alive, a part of the wandering Marauder band. The Marauder seer, Sanchez, insists they have been called to gather at the sacred Source, and so they have traveled there through great hardship... only to find that the Source is, impossibly, the alien ship Mother. Here is a chance to bring life back to the blasted Earth - or destroy what little life still clings to it.

REVIEW: This is the final book in Applegate's Remnants series, which she once stated was going to be her last-ever series. One particular line may refer to her thoughts on series writing in general, or hint at lingering dismay over the cancellation of Everworld. In any event, I felt cheated. Nothing was explained, and Applegate jumps right over what should have been a great and interesting moment in her rush to get the series over with once and for all. I also felt that several characters ended up as deadweight, so the time spent developing them was wasted. For that matter, several plot elements - all of which started out with great promise for extra twists and turns - ultimately came to nothing. I wonder if Applegate did that intentionally, or if she simply got caught up in other story arcs and forgot about them.
On the whole, Remnants could've been a little shorter and the ending a little punchier. I hope to see more sci-fi/fantasy books by Applegate sometime in the future, though, as I enjoy her writing style. I would especially like to see how she handles a nice, single-volume sci-fi or fantasy story.

You might also enjoy:
The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury, Fiction - Collected tales and vignettes relate humanity's exploration of Mars, and the fall of two civilizations)
A Princess of Mars (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - A Civil War veteran finds himself transported to the dying, hostile planet Mars)
The Tripods: When the Tripods Came (John Christopher, YA Fiction - Two teens witness an alien invasion that strips humanity of power on Earth)
The Object Serial (Winston Emerson, Fiction - A mysterious alien sphere appears over downtown Louisville, causing chaos)
After London or, Wild England (Richard Jeffries, Fiction - After civilization collapses, humanity reverts to brutal feudalism)
The Watchers series (Peter Lerangis, YA Fiction - Stories of children in strange sitations)
Field Guide to the Apocalypse (Meghann Marco, Nonfiction - A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving and preventing various global disasters, based on Hollywood's examples)
Bitterwood (James Maxey, Fiction - With humans enslaved by dragons, a legendary dragonslayer fights back)
The Unwanteds (Lisa McMann, YA fiction - A brutal dictatorship culls creative teens, who find refuge in a hidden magical sanctuary)
The Gem People (Logan Mickel, YA Fiction - A young miner discovers people made of living gemstones, relics of a lost civilization)
Behind the Canvas (Alexander Vance, YA Fiction - A girl discovers a magical world composed of oil paintings)
The Last Survivors series (Susan Beth Pfeffer, YA Fiction - A meteor impact alters the Moon's orbit, with catastrophic consequences on Earth)
The Visitors trilogy (Ron Philbrick, YA Fiction - After a UFO crashes, something strange possesses all the grown-ups of Harley Hills)
The Martian (Andy Weir, Fiction - Left behind after a botched mission, an astronaut must survive on Mars until help can reach him)
The Time Machine (H. G. Wells, Fiction - A 19th-century man travels 800,000 years forward to the twilight of humanity)
The 5th Wave (Rick Yancey, YA Fiction - A teen girl struggles to rescue her kid brother in a world devastated by alien invaders)

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Crenshaw
Katherine Applegate
Feiwel and Friends
Fiction, YA Fantasy
****+

DESCRIPTION: As a fifth-grader, Jackson should be too old for imaginary friends. He prefers facts to imagination, anyway; facts are solid and stable, unlike his home life, with a pest of a kid sister and two musician parents struggling to make ends meet. Though Mom and Dad won't admit it, they may end up losing their apartment and living out of a minivan again. That was the first time Jackson met the talking cat Crenshaw... but that was three years ago. He was just a little kid then. But now that he's returned, the giant talking cat refuses to leave. Little as he wants to admit it, Jackson could use a good friend right now - even one whose existence defies every fact in the book.

REVIEW: Like Applegate's award-winning The One and Only Ivan (reviewed previously on this blog), this outwardly-simple story hides some complicated realities and thorny emotional moments. Jackson clings to facts so hard that he can't allow for magic and wonderment, though his best efforts fail to prevent lies and uncertainties from perpetually creeping into his life. Crenshaw defies his ideal, ordered world - and he finds it very hard to dismiss the cat as a mere hallucination, not when the family dog Aretha reacts to his presence and Crenshaw seems to know more than the boy who ostensibly created him. The cat is a fun character, both a whimsical friend for a child in need and his own entity, a guardian angel in tuxedo-cat fur. There's more to the whole imaginary-friend business than a logical boy like Jackson can fathom, and there's more to life than the facts he clings to so hard. Themes of homelessness and pride and flawed families run through the background as boy and cat struggle with burdens no child should face in an ideal world... but, then, the world isn't an ideal place, and learning to cope with that is the first big step towards growing up. It may not end with the happily-ever-after some children's books would insist upon, but the conclusion nevertheless satisfies.

You might also enjoy:
The One and Only Ivan (Katherine Applegate, YA Fiction - Taken from the wild as a baby, the gorilla Ivan lives in an American shopping mall)
Dream a Little Dream (Piers Anthony and Julie Brady, Fiction - When a world created by human dreams is in trouble, one of their own must travel to the real world)
The Magic Shop books (Bruce Coville, YA Fiction - A mysterious traveling magic shop helps children cope with their problems)
The Tiger Rising (Kate DiCamillo, YA Fiction - A boy's grief and a girl's anger inexplicably bind them to the fate of a captive tiger)
Coraline (Neil Gaiman, YA Fiction - A girl finds a doorway to a mirror version of her flat, where a dark entity awaits her arrival)
Hot Chocolate for the Unicorn (Mary E. Lowd, Fiction - A woman prepares for two special visitors)
Griffin's Castle (Jenny Nimmo, YA Fiction - A lonely girl summons stone guardians to help protect herself and her home)
The Adventures of Beekle, the Unimaginary Friend (Dan Santat, YA Picture Book - Tired of waiting for his human child to claim him, an imaginary friend heads for the real world)

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The One and Only Ivan
Katherine Applegate
Harper
Fiction, YA General Fiction
****+

DESCRIPTION: For over two decades, Ivan the gorilla has lived at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade. It's a peaceful life, if sometimes a dull one, but he has his tire swing, his TV, and his art, plus the steady stream of "slimy chimps" who visit daily. He also has his friends: Stella the elephant, veteran of a circus until an injury sidelined her, and Bob the stray dog who sneaks into his cage each night, not to mention the human girl Julia, the only one to see the images in his "scribbles." Then Mack, owner and ringmaster of the Big Top, brings in the baby elephant Ruby. For the first time, Ivan sees his domain for the cage it is... but what can one gorilla hope to do about it?

REVIEW: I remember the tale of the real Ivan, a gorilla kept in a local circus-themed shopping mall for decades until shifting public attitudes and outcry got him the "retirement" he desperately needed. Applegate necessarily fictionalizes some elements here, not simply by giving Ivan a "voice," creating a deceptively simple tale of good intentions gone awry and humanity's blindness to the needs of our fellow creatures. But, then, humans aren't the only ones blinded by willful ignorance over what seemingly can't be changed. It's only by witnessing tragedy in others that Ivan realizes his own sadness, and determines to change at least one thing about his life. The characters all have hidden facets, even Mack, making what could've been a flat story into something much more poignant and nuanced. It reads fast, but invites rereading. Touching, often sad and occasionally frustrating, it nevertheless shows what can happen when just one person - human or animal - stops giving in to despair and apathy and dares to hope for something better.

You might also enjoy:
Crenshaw (Katherine Applegate, YA Fiction - A logic-driven boy's imaginary friend returns to his life)
The Wild Robot (Peter Brown, YA Fiction - Shipwrecked on an uninhabited island, a robot learns from animals and the wilderness)
Tarzan of the Apes (Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fiction - The classic story of a boy raised in the African jungle by apes)
The Jungle Book and The Second Jungle Book (Rudyard Kipling, YA? Fiction - Tales of the boy Mowgli, raised by wolves in the Indian jungles, and other stories of jungle lore)
Before Adam (Jack London, Fiction - In his dreams, a man relives a protohuman ancestor's life in the Mid-Pliocene era)
The Call of the Wild and White Fang (Jack London, Fiction - In two stories, a domestic dog learns the ways of the wolf and a wildborn wolf hybrid learns the ways of Man)
Animal Wise (Virginia Morell, Nonfiction - Scientists study how animals think and feel, with surprising results)
Pax (Sara Pennypacker, YA Fiction - On the eve of war, a boy and the fox he raised must find their own ways in a harsh world)
The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents (Terry Pratchett, YA Fiction - A cat running a rat-plague con with co-conspirator rodents and a boy piper runs into a real problem)
The Hunt for Elsewhere (Beatrice Vine, YA? Fiction - The fox Saxton, influenced by an old crow, sets out on a journey of discovery)
Last Ape Standing (Chip Walter, Nonfiction - A look at the evolution of homonins, and the physical and mental innovations that led to modern humans)

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Eve & Adam
Katherine Applegate and Michael Grant
Square Fish
Fiction, YA Sci-Fi
****+

DESCRIPTION: The day Evening "E.V." Spiker was struck by a car was the day her life changed forever. It's not just the trauma of a crushed arm and severed leg (among other injuries) - it's what happened when her mother, Terra "Terror" Spiker, got her moved to a private room at the family pharmaceutical laboratory just outside of San Francisco. Everyone knows about the company's groundbreaking, life-saving work on diseases and vaccines, but few know what goes on deep within the gleaming complex. For one thing, Evening's leg heals remarkably - impossibly - fast. For another, there's a teen orderly, Solo, who's definitely hiding something behind his surfer-dude hair and inscrutable blue eyes. But the strangest secret may be hiding in the "game" her mother wants her to play to keep her occupied during her convalescence, a program to build the perfect human, from the DNA up. But it's all just virtual, not real cloning or genetic manipulation... isn't it?

REVIEW: The moral dilemmas of Frankenstein meet modern America in this fast-paced medical sci-fi tale. Evening struggles between the demands of her hard-nosed businesswoman mother and memories of her equally-stubborn artist father, cursed by a perfectionist streak in an inherently imperfect world. She lives vicariously through Aislin, her rough-edged BFF (currently dating a loser thug who gets her into one jam after another), who acts as a emotional compass when Evening finds herself lost in the unfamiliar terrain of her own heart. Solo, an angry young man whose life has also been permanently altered by his late parents' association with Spiker Pharmaceuticals, has spent years plotting revenge as he gathers evidence of the dirt hidden beneath the company's spotless facade... only to find his resolve tested when he realizes how many people, including Evening, could be hurt. The imperfect characters, each saddled with their own flaws, struggle to navigate in an increasingly complicated situation. Is it ever justified to play God? Are some prices simply too high to pay? Can the perfection never found in real life be achieved in a laboratory? Why is love, so unpredictable and irresistible - and how can it compel one to do and endure such horrible things? Evening and her companions face all of these questions, and more too, while dodging shady doctors and other threats. I clipped it a half-star because the ending felt a little weak and the villain a trifle flat, plus I felt more could've been done with the all-too-real creation Adam, but overall I enjoyed this one.

You might also enjoy:
Dream a Little Dream (Piers Anthony and Julie Brady, Fiction - When a world created by human dreams is in trouble, one of their own must travel to the real world)
Kiln People (David Brin, Fiction - Humans learn to make living clay replicas of themselves, which are inherently considered disposable property)
Young Frankenstein: A Mel Brooks Book: The Story of the Making of the Film (Mel Brooks with Rebecca Keegan, Nonfiction - Director Brooks talks about the making of his favorite film)
Wild Seed (Octavia E. Butler, Fiction - An immortal predatory spirit encounters a powerful shapeshifter/healer in Africa, leading to a centuries-long power struggle)
Extreme Science (Phil Clarke, YA? Nonfiction - A look at scientists who have pushed the boundaries of knowledge and ethics)
Space Station ICE-3 (Bruce Coville, YA Fiction - A boy living on an orbital station stumbles upon a dark plot)
The Stoneheart trilogy (Charlie Fletcher, YA Fiction - A boy becomes entangled in the invisible battle between London's gargoyles and statuary)
Teller (Chris Howard, YA Fiction - A teen boy learns he can manipulate reality with stories and paintings)
LUC (Kimball Lee, Fiction - A scientist's cloning project unexpectedly produces a sapient man)
Cinder (Marissa Meyer, YA Fiction - A teen girl cyborg, hated by her stepmother and society, stumbles into a plot that might enslave the prince and destroy her world)
The 2099 series (John Peel, YA Fiction - A boy in the future discovers a threat to global civilization)
Frankenstein (Mary Wollstonecraft Shelly, Fiction - A man who thought to play God is tormented by his own abominable creation)
The Otherland quartet (Tad Williams, Fiction - In the future, people become victims of a highly potent offshoot of the Internet)
Anna to the Infinite Power (1983 movie DVD - A girl discovers devastating secrets about her past)

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