Darkling Plain, A (Hungry City Chronicles)

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9780060890551: Darkling Plain, A (Hungry City Chronicles)

The once-great traction city of London is now just a radioactive wreck, a ruin haunted by electrical discharges and the dashed hopes of the people who once called it home—people like Tom Natsworthy. Twenty years after he fled, intending never to return, he discovers that something stirs in the remains of the old city.

Tom and his daughter, Wren, aren't the only people interested in London. The desperate armies of the Traction Cities and the Green Storm are also closing in, certain that whatever is taking shape within the city holds the key to victory in their never-ending war.

But it may be too late. Even as Tom and Wren hurry to uncover the mystery of London, Hester Shaw—estranged from her husband and her daughter—tracks the resurrected Stalker Fang, who has found another way to end the war and all life on the planet once and for all.

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About the Author:

Philip Reevewas born in Brighton, England. Inspired by the Asterix and Tintin books he loved as a boy, he became a cartoonist and, many years later, the illustrator of several highly successful children's book series in the United Kingdom. He has been writing since he was five, but mortal engines, the first book in the Hungry City Chronicles, was his first published novel. He has since followed that with Predator's Gold, Infernal Devices, and the Victorian space opera Larklight. Mr. Reeve lives on Dartmoor with his wife, Sarah, and their son, Samuel.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 7–10—The final installment in the series continues the clever premise and breakneck pace established by the first three volumes. This story begins six months after the action in Infernal Devices (HarperCollins, 2006). A tentative peace seems likely to end years of warfare between gigantic traction cities that grind across the landscape consuming everything in their paths and stationary communities that denounce their destruction of nature. Then dissenting members of both sides sabotage the truce, and Theo Ngoni, Wren Natsworthy, and Wren's parents are drawn into the resulting mayhem. To complicate matters further, the Stalker Fang, a terrifying amalgam of killer robot and human corpse, has survived her presumed destruction and is intent on eradicating all human life so that Earth can recover from human depredation. Separate, interweaving story lines follow the principal characters as they encounter dozens of others from the earlier books while traversing the former Europe and Asia at top speed by airship, sand ship, traction city, and predator suburb. While readers new to the series will enjoy the hairbreadth escapes, humor, and romance, they may get lost in the complicated politics of the Traktionstadtsgesellschaft, the Anti-Tractionist League, the Green Storm, townies, mossies, etc., making the book more satisfying for readers already familiar with the impressive future revealed in the previous books. With its popular appeal and increasingly relevant theme of global-environmental conflict, this is a worthy conclusion to a series that ranks among the best science fiction for young people in recent years.—Beth Wright, Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, VT
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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