Philanthropic pop-star or utter madman? Anthony Horowitz's latest, Eagle Strike: An Alex Rider Adventure finds the teen spy tracking another arch-villain across Europe in an action-packed follow-up to Stormbreaker, Point Blank and Skeleton Key. PW wrote of the debut book, "Readers will cheer for the 14-year-old hero of this spy thriller and stay tuned for his next assignment." Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
In his fourth adventure, Alex Rider strikes out on his own. The fourteen-year-old MI6 agent is vacationing with his girlfriend, Sabina Pleasure, and her family in the south of France when he spots his nemesis, assassin Yassen Gregorovich. That afternoon, Sabina's parents are almost killed when their house blows up. Alex's investigations lead him to philanthropist-celebrity Damian Cray, but MI6 will not act on Alex's suspicions, forcing him to deal with the deadly Cray on his own. Appealing and outrageous action is barely held together with a plot like a colander. Fans will enjoy it, although they might feel popcorn-bloated by the sloppy details that make this novel purely "B-movie" quality. Of course, this episode is no different than the others, andas in a good B-movieit is the character of the protagonist that will keep readers engaged. Horowitz adds a new and darker element to Alex's character, promising a different relationship between him and the MI6 in future episodes. VOYA Codes: 3Q 4P M J (Readable without serious defects; Broad general YA appeal; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 2003, Philomel, 272p., Ages 11 to 15.
This fast-paced James Bond-style action/adventure tale begins with an assassination in the Amazon jungle and then fast-forwards 15 years. Reluctant teenage spy Alex Rider is on holiday in the south of France with his girlfriend Sabrina and her parents when the house they have been staying in is blown up. Alex assumes that he is the target because he has spotted his archenemy, a Russian killer, in town, but he learns that Sabrina's father, a journalist who has been working on a story about pop celebrity Damian Cray, was the intended victim. And so the game is on, as Alex sets out to discover what nefarious doings Cray has planned, and of course finds himself in one dangerous situation after another. Highlights include a stint as a matador, a chase on a bicycle (loaded with helpful spy gadgets) through Amsterdam, a perilous trip through a real-life version of Cray's deadly new computer game, and a fight to the death aboard Air Force One. Will Cray succeed in launching nuclear missiles? Only Alex and Sabrina stand in his way. Alex, with his quick mind, spy training, and repertoire of martial arts moves, is unfailingly heroic, and as with his previous outings (Stormbreaker, Point Blank, and Skeleton Key) this entertaining thriller is sure to be popular. It moves at a breakneck pace and will engage even reluctant readers. Can the movie be far behind? (An Alex Rider Adventure). KLIATT Codes: JRecommended for junior high school students. 2004 (orig. 2003), Penguin, Philomel, 272p., Ages 12 to 15.
Gr 5-10-Alex Rider, a 14-year-old secret agent who has worked for MI6-British military intelligence-returns for his fourth adventure. Vacationing in France with his girlfriend, Sabina Pleasure, and her parents, Alex spots Yassen Gregorovich, a known assassin, and senses something isn't quite right. Before long, Sabina's journalist father is injured in an "accidental" bombing and Alex is thrown into another mystery that involves a devious scheme to annihilate the world. In this heart-racing novel, Horowitz combines fast-paced action with ingenious gadgets that Alex either has on his side or is forced to battle against. The straightforward writing will appeal to a wide audience; the story is intricate enough to entertain older readers, but accessible to younger ones as well. For anyone who has enjoyed Alex's previous adventures, Eagle Strike will prove just as good if not better, and for those who haven't been introduced to this young spy, this book will certainly get them addicted and anxiously awaiting the next installment.-Leigh Ann Morlock, Vernonia School District, OR Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Here's more zippy action and fast-moving drama starring Alex Rider, in the fourth installment of the teenage spy series. This time, 14-year-old Alex saves the world all on his own, without help from MI6, as he accidentally becomes involved with a paid assassin and an insane rock star who's plotting nuclear evil. This episode has Alex thrust into a life-sized computer game in which he himself is the action hero, dodging real spears, and battling snakes and Aztec gods, in a chapter that certainly will appeal to adolescent boys. The final confrontation features Alex trapped inside a hijacked Air Force One with the nuclear warheads already launched. Can Alex destroy them in time? It's all absurd fun that lives up to the excitement young readers have come to expect from Horowitz. (Fiction. 12+)