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The Hunchback Assignments (Hunchback Assignments)by Arthur Slade
Synopses & Reviews
A gripping new series combines Steampunk, spying, and a fantastic Victorian London.
The mysterious Mr. Socrates rescues Modo, a child in a traveling freak show. Modo is a hunchback with an amazing ability to transform his appearance, and Mr. Socrates raises him in isolation as an agent for the Permanent Association, a spy agency behind Brittanias efforts to rule the empire. At 14, Modo is left on the streets of London to fend for himself. When he encounters Octavia Milkweed, another Association agent, the two uncover a plot by the Clockword Guild behind the murders of important men. Furthermore, a mad scientist is turning orphan children into automatons to further the goals of the Guild. Modo and Octavia journey deep into the tunnels under London and discover a terrifying plot against the British government. Its up to them to save their country.
"Calling to mind elements of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Frankenstein, Slade (Jolted: Newton Starker's Rules for Survival) presents a thrilling tale of an unusual and talented young man caught between two idealistic, ruthless organizations. Fourteen-year-old hunchback Modo has been raised from infancy by Mr. Socrates to use his shape-shifting abilities in service to the Permanent Association, secretive defenders of the status quo in Slade's steampunk Victorian England. Opposing the Permanent Association is the Clockwork Guild, whose hubristic ambitions are untempered by mercy or decency. Together with fellow agent Octavia Milkweed, Modo must discover why the guild is kidnapping and brainwashing — or worse — children and the scions of the upper class. Although Modo is too innocent to truly understand his situation, Slade makes it clear that Mr. Socrates' exploitation of the teenage agents undermines their effectiveness and mirrors the willingness of the guild to treat people as tools. With its self-loathing hero and exploration of themes of identity and self, the novel is more than the straightforward adventure it may appear. Ages 12 — up. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
This gripping new series combines Steampunk, spying, and a fantastic Victorian London. The mysterious Mr. Socrates rescues Modo, a child with an amazing ability to transform his appearance, and raises him to be a spy. It's up to 14-year-old Modo and fellow spy Octavia Milkweed to save their country from the diabolical efforts of a mad scientist.
About the Author
Arthur Slade has published several novels for young readers, including Jolted: Newton Starkers Rules for Survival, Megiddos Shadow, Tribes, and Dust, which won the Governor Generals Award for Childrens Literature. He lives in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, with his wife, Brenda Baker. Visit him on the Web at www.arthurslade.com.
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