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Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Alien Storm by A. G. Taylor


26th November 2010, Usborne
432 pages Paperback
Review copy 

Children's, thriller, 11+ 

Rabid techno-dogs, tele-powers (telekinesis, telepathy, fire ability etc) grow, extremely evil villains, threat of world destruction, military involvement, friendship, world domination

Summary from Usborne 
With their powers growing, and the threats against them also on the increase, Sarah and Robert and their gang of superhero friends are still on the run from HIDRA, an international military-scientific task force. Once again the siblings are called upon to save the world. Can they out-smart evil Russian billionaire Nikolai Makarov and prevent a deadly meteorite shower? Deadly meteorites are heading to earth but mysterious Russian billionaire Nikolai Makarov seems gleeful. What is his secret and can the group of friends thwart his master plan?

Nayuleska's thoughts
I re-read Meteorite Strike so I was up to date with the characters and events. Events in MS had brilliant twists - and the ones in Alien Storm are at just a high intensity, perhaps even more so. Major Bright is still an enemy. Sarah and her gang are living away from HIDRA. I was a little surprised and personally a little disappointed that I didn't get to see the even where Sarah sold the diamonds. It had felt like such a big event in Meteorite Strike - after all, Daniel was adamant that Sarah sell them. I thought she'd get to meet the criminal (who else would buy diamonds?), have a run-in with the criminal's goons.... That didn't happen. However, all the events in Alien Storm meant I didn't have much time to dwell on that. Honestly this books reads like an exciting anime series. There is a lot of drama, with several chapters having cliff hanger endings. Sarah has a lot of responsibility on her shoulders because she's the leader. It's tough when not all of the other children see her point of view. They disagree with her at times, and wish that she'd keep her nose out from mysteries, but in the end they thank her for it. 

I liked how new characters mixed in with the old ones: Rachel is still friendly but Sarah doesn't trust her much. There's a new guy on the scene who is grouchy but he does help out too. I thought Major Bright was evil, but Nikolai Malarov is ten times more sinister. What he has in mind for the children is horrific. I did actually guess some of the twists surrounding him and his plans - not all, and knowing them didn't make it any easy to read. I was so scared for most of the book, I didn't think all the characters would survive. The next book will be out sometime in 2011, and I can't wait to see what lies in store for Sarah and her friends in the future. I hope they stick aroud with HIDRA for a bit.

Final conclusion
Alien storm is an emotionally and physically turbulent book, capturing all the reader's emotions. The huge plot twist in the centre makes Sarah and her gang's enemies look like sweet little kittens.

Be sure to read the first book in this blockbuster-type series, Meteorite Strike

For similar books check out The Tomorrow Code by Brian Falkner and also Michael Grant's series starting with Gone - this involves an enemy similar to the one in Alien Storm, but is a lot darker and classed under horror.

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