143. Empire of Ruins by Arthur Slade

Empire of Ruins by Arthur Slade (Canada) - (US)
The Hunchback Assignments, III

Pages: 309
Ages: 10+
Finished: Jun. 19, 2011
First Published: Feb.8, 2011 (US: Sept. 13, 2011)
Publisher: HarperCollins
Genre: YA, steampunk, fantasy
Rating: 5/5
First sentence:

In a Queensland rainforest, over ten thousand miles away from London, Modo leaned his humped back against a strangler fig tree.

Acquired: Received a review copy from Harper Collins Canada.

Reason for Reading: Next in the series; plus I read every new book by the author.

Modo and 'Tavia are back with a bang in a brand new adventure that is fresh and exciting.  The Clockwork Guild are back as is the villain with Miss Hakkandottir at the command but she has some new tricks up her metal hand's sleeve, namely a falconer and some vicious clockwork falcons added to the poisonous menagerie who are out to get Modo.  On an exploration trip to Australia to find perhaps a valuable weapon called the God's Face, the Association enters the jungles to discover what can only be described as an Egyptian temple.  All the crew are here, Modo and Octavia, back to work together again, along with Tharpa, Mr. Socrates joins the team in the field for a change as well!  Another nice surprise is to see Mrs. Finchley back on the scene, not about to enter any jungles, but back in civilization where she may be needed.  A fast-paced rip-roaring tale that certainly leaves the sameness some series often get bogged down in by transporting our heroes (and villains) to new surroundings and obstacles to face in primitive early 20th century Australia.  My favourite of the series so far!  There is a teeny-weeny bit of romance in the air but there is so much to be overcome by the participants themselves, individually, that the romantic theme is only barely only a whisper in the background, which suits me fine.  Great characters, great adventure, cool inventions, and book 4 seems to be headed for Canada so another out of the ordinary adventure to look forward to in the next book!


  1. I wasn't even aware of this series so I did a search and read your reviews for the first two books as well ... perfect summertime reading for my daughter!

  2. Yay, Arthur Slade! I look forward to the next book by him. :)


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