From the Publisher
[pull for catalog]
Praise for Fever Crumb
“From the rubble of a broken world, mixing ancient tech with old-fashioned derring-do, comes another splendid adventure from Philip Reeve.”Scott Westerfeld, author of Leviathan and Behemoth
[star] “Reeve's captivating flights of imagination play as vital a role in the story as his endearing heroine, hissworthy villains, and nifty array of supporting characters.” Booklist, starred review
[star] “Beautifully written, grippingly paced, and filled with eccentric characters and bizarre inventions
this is a novel guaranteed to please Reeve's fansand very likely broaden their ranks.” Publishers Weekly, starred review
VOYA - Amy Sisson
Picking up two years after Fever Crumb (Scholastic, 2010/VOYA April 2011) left off, A Web of Air begins with Fever, now caring for orphans Ruan and Fern, aboard a traveling theater land barge. Although she uses her technical skills to dazzle audiences with electric lights and special effects, Fever has never truly fit in with this crowd. She is soon lured away by the reclusive Arlo Thursday, a young man who dreams of inventing a flying machine like those rumored to have existed during the Ancients' time. Fever learns the hard way that there are factions who will do anything to suppress this subversive technology and has difficulty deciding whom to trust. Much in this book is utterly charming, including the generous and colorful theater folk; Fever and Arlo's delight in unlocking the secrets of flight; the talking "angels," who are the last vestiges of a genetically engineered species of seagulls; and references to present-day technology with the names now humorously garbled. It is frustrating, however, that Fever ends up in almost the exact same position as she did in the first book, with little resolution. Further, while Fever's lack of appropriate emotional response can be explained by her rigid Engineer upbringing, Arlo seems inexplicably cold at times, with almost no reaction when his closest angel friend is murdered. Nonetheless, the Fever Crumb books are interesting and inventive and provide a nice YA prequel/segue into Reeve's more adult Hungry City Chronicles. These books are a good choice for public libraries in particular. Reviewer: Amy Sisson
Children's Literature - Carollyne Hutter
This is the second book in the "Fever Crumb" series. It is also the second book in the "Hungry City Chronicles" or "Mortal Engines Quartet" prequel series. All the books in the series are set in the distant future where Earth has been reduced to wasteland by a devastating conflict, known as the Sixty Minute War. A Web of Air opens with Fever Crumb living in a harbor city called "Mayda." Fever is now sixteen and taking care of two orphans, Ruan and Fern. Because of her knowledge of electricity, she is a member of a traveling barge theatre. Mayda is a city where buildings go up and down the hills on runners and birds called "Angels" fly through the sky. In Mayda, Fever meets Arlo, a young man who is working on the lost secrets of flight. In this world, the people have no knowledge of flight. Fever is well educated in engineering, so she and Arlo join together to build a flying machine on a remote island. But this is a dangerous pursuit. Powerful enemies want to steal the new invention. And other enemies want to destroy the secret of flight and keep society on the ground. The book is an imaginative work. Even though it is a sequel, one can read the book alone. Be advised that there are violent scenes in the book. Reviewer: Carollyne Hutter
School Library Journal
Gr 6�10—Having fled London and her recently discovered parents, Fever Crumb is traveling around a postapocalyptic Europe with an acting troupe. She earns her keep by using her knowledge of technology and electricity to provide lighting and special effects. The audiences and performers are appreciative, but deep inside, Fever is unhappy about how unreasonable the acting business is, since her childhood training by the Order of Engineers focused on facts and rational thought. Then, at a seaside town, Fever comes across a model glider built by a mysterious young recluse named Arlo Thursday, who is trying to rediscover the lost mysteries of flight. Fever wants to help him, but shadowy powers seem to be working against any inventor, philosopher, or engineer who wants to study flight and flying machines. Reeve's intricately imagined world, combined with a fast-paced plot, offers a rich, rewarding reading experience. In the bittersweet ending, Fever continues to develop as a character as she experiences the transformative power of love and makes sacrifices that none of her family and friends can truly appreciate. This book can be read as a stand-alone work, though readers familiar with Fever Crumb (Scholastic, 2010) will have a better understanding of the backstory.—Misti Tidman, Licking County Library, Newark, OH
Fever Crumb is back!
Two years after the events ofFever Crumb(2010), Fever finds herself far south of London (which continues to ready itself for mobilization), in a volcanic city where a lonely young man seeks the secret of flight. Reeve's writing, already excellent, shines here as he turns his attention to the romantic, in both the human and poetic senses. Fever herself is a virtuoso character: prickly, even unlikable, hampered by her eminently rational upbringing and the way it distances her from others, yet compelling and even lovable by readers and characters alike. Her rational approach to the world blinds her; readers will intuit elements of the mystery consuming Fever long before she catches on. It also dooms Fever's chance at love, because love in inherently irrational. Religion and political machinations both play a role here, and the actions of her Scriven mother and grandfather continue to intrude on Fever's attempts to make her own way in this ingenious world. A final delight for old fans: Building blocks of the Mortal Engines series appear like video-game Easter eggs (the first Jenny Haniver!). This is clearly the middle of Fever's tale, and the end hints at more adventures to come.
Imaginative, inventive and exciting.(Steampunk. 12 & up)