Richard Harland is the author of The Vicar of Morbing Vyle, The Dark Edge, Taken By Force Hidden From View, and Worldshaker.
"Harland has constructed a world with overtones of the Victorian era, when capitalism was at its most aggressive, and taken us hopefully to a brighter dawn." - Viewpoint. "Harland has created a wonderfully brooding world that is part Dickens, part steam-punk and will appeal to those twelve and up who like their fantasy a little on the dark side." - Readings Monthly
Gr 6-10-In this complex sequel to Worldshaker (S & S, 2010), the juggernaut has been rechristened Liberator after the successful coup orchestrated by Col, a Swank, and Riff and her fellow Filthies. Society used to be stratified by what level of a ship a person lived on and, unfortunately, class tensions have risen between the now-ruling Filthies, who were once the underclass, and the deposed Swanks, who were once the ruling class, and someone begins sabotaging the ship. When a Revolutionary Council member is killed, his replacement, Lye, a Filthy, quickly reveals her virulent hatred of all Swanks. A security force is formed and anti-Swank aggression escalates. Col's overtures to Riff are returned coldly. Coal stores that power the juggernaut are running low so the Liberator must stop at a refueling station but, by doing so, they risk discovery of their revolution by the imperialist forces of various nations. There are a lot of plot threads, but by the book's end, Harland has them neatly wrapped up, setting the groundwork for the next in the series or allowing the crew to sail into the sunset. Although there is some backstory woven in, it's never entirely clear what led to the creation of the juggernauts and the radical caste system that they employ; those who haven't read the Worldshaker (S & S, 2010) may be a bit lost. With that caveat, established fans, enthusiasts of Philip Reeve's "Mortal Engines" series (HarperCollins), and lovers of steampunk or dystopia will enjoy this fast-paced story.-Eric Norton, McMillan Memorial Library, Wisconsin Rapids, WI (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.