Sixteen years have passed since the events of Predator’s Gold and Anchorage is no longer on the move, having settled down at the edge of Vineland. Living on Anchorage-in-Vineland are Freya, Caul, Tom and Hester…and Wren, the baby that Hester was carrying who is now a bored 15 year old, longing for excitement.
When a charming pirate – one of Caul’s old crew – turns up in Anchorage-in-Vineland looking for a valuable object, Wren seizes her chance for an adventure only for it to go wrong almost immediately, leaving bodies on the beach at Anchorage-in-Vineland, Wren a captive on a Lost Boys’ sub heading for Grimsby, and Hester loaded with guns and hot on their trail. But before Wren can sample the underwater delights of Grimsby, she and her captor are caught in another trap – the city of Brighton has been putting out calls for the Lost Boys, promising a reunion with parents onboard the pleasure city, only the promise isn’t quite what it seems.
Another great instalment of the Hungry City Chronicles, I’m really enjoying how this world is developing. Having got to know the system of Municipal Darwinism in the first two books (where mechanised cities prey on one another), it’s been interesting to see how the world has been changing over the years, with the Anti-Traction League (fighting for the end of Municipal Darwinism) since replaced by the more extreme Green Storm, and I’m looking forward to seeing how else the world changes over the coming books. But these books aren’t just good because of the world-building, but because of the amount of emotion that Reeve manages to pack into the them. Unafraid to have his characters pay a price for their actions, each book has delivered a surprisingly hefty lump in my throat at times, which I hadn’t really expected on picking up a series of children’s books. With the family unit now fractured, I’m already looking forward to seeing how Reeve will make me cry in the next book.