Infernal Devices by Philip Reeve wraps up the Hungry City Chronicles. Here Wren, the daughter of Tom and Hester-introduced in Mortal Engines (in a starred review of it, PW wrote, "Like the moving cities it depicts, Reeve's debut novel is a staggering feat of engineering")-steals an Old Tech book and draws her parents back into battle. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Gr 8 Up-Mortal Engines (HarperCollins, 2003) hit the scene like a lightning bolt, with its strikingly original vision of large traction cities moving across a post-apocalyptic landscape, gobbling up smaller municipalities and dismantling them for spare parts. Infernal Devices, the third book in the series, picks up the action almost 20 years after Predator's Gold (HarperCollins, 2004). Tom and Hester have settled in safe Anchorage-in-Vineland with their teenage daughter. Wren, however, thinks that Anchorage is a tad too remote and longs to have adventures like her parents. Opportunity presents itself when a mysterious submarine carrying a group of Lost Boys arrives in Vineland and their leader recruits Wren to steal a mysterious Tin Book. She is kidnapped and sold as a slave. While Tom and Hester set out to rescue her, others, including former adversary Anna Fang, resurrected as the evil robot Stalker Fang, also try to get the book. Reeve keeps the multiple plots moving with surprises, tragedy, and multiple betrayals, and while at first the pacing seems a bit off as the action moves from one group to the next, things speed up by the second half of the book. The final showdown that brings the various threads of plot and all the major characters together is breathtaking. The open-ended conclusion more than begs for an immediate sequel.-Tim Wadham, Maricopa County Library District, Phoenix, AZ Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.