2008 Los Angeles Times Book Award Young Adult Fiction
Synopses & Reviews
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.
"'Reeve's massive, ambitious Hungry City Chronicles series roars to a fine conclusion in this fourth installment. War is raging between the Traction Cities and the vicious Green Storm, but Lady Naga has brought about peace negotiations. Loyalists to the Stalker Fang still move about, though, and young Theo is enlisted to get the Lady Naga to safety. Meanwhile, Tom Natsworthy and his daughter Wren learn that there is movement within the smoldering, immobile ruins of London; they return to their old home to learn that a New London is being secretly built, a levitating city with no need for wheels and no jaws for devouring other cities. Elsewhere, the Stalker Fang has activated a doomsday weapon called ODIN, with the intent of blackening the entire surface of the Earth, so that it might one day be green again. Battle sequences are punctuated by a sudden switch to present-tense prose, lending a sense of immediacy to the conflicts; the finale is poignant, and it elegantly references the opening lines of the first book in the series. Taken as a whole, the Hungry City Chronicles is a remarkable body of work, one that stands beside The Lord of the Rings and His Dark Materials in terms of re-readability and scope. Complex, intelligent and rewarding, Reeve's world is truly one to get lost in. Ages 12-up. (June)' Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)"
"The depth of the characters is reflected in every scene as they make decisions that encompass and build to the next conflict, keeping the flow of the story fluid....This book needs to be savored and not just read." Children's Literature
"Suspense is maintained throughout this fine saga, with many action scenes, touches of humor...complex characters and inventive details. Thrilling right to the satisfying end." KLIATT
"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." School Library Journal
About the Author
Philip Reeve was 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.