Enthoven, Sam. TIM: Defender of the Earth (2008)
This is a book I hadn't heard of until I picked it up in Half Price Books' clearance aisle, and it took me a while to read it. To add to the confusion, it's listed on Titlewave as an adult title. What a shame! Like Cole's Z Rex, this was a fabulous smash-em-up science fiction book!
TIM is a genetically engineered, indestructible tyrannosaur developed by the British government. He's been happy living underneath Trafalgar Square in a lab, until they try to kill him. Chris is a hapless teen who is given a strange bracelet by a guard at the British Museum. Anna is the daughter of Professor Mallahide, who has unleashed his cloud of nanobots of the world and is attempting to absorb every living thing into it. Obviously, this is really bad news for England, especially when all the countries in the world decide that the obly way to contain the nanobots is to bomb England into oblivion! Together, TIM, Chris and Anna must find a way to save the world, no matter what the cost.
Strengths: Wow! The dedication page explains a lot: "To Gamera, Godzilla, Kong, and the rest, with love and bellowing." Most of London is laid waste by one force or another, with descriptive explosions, chases, and general mayhem. The London Eye is put to good use, as is Big Ben, and the Houses of Parliament are pretty much wiped out. Still, there is a moral: scientific discoveries should be used for good and not for evil.
Weaknesses: It's not explained too clearly why TIM, a government project, becomes a defender of earth, and his conversation with his predecessor, the Kraken, is a little confusing. Surly Teen Boy also devoured this, and said that it felt slightly rushed to him. Not that we cared. I am just sad that Crawlers ("They will do anything for their queen, and soon, so will you!") has not been released in the US. How can I not love an author who claims on the back flap of the book that this is "phase two of my sinister master plan to conquer the universe"? Every day should have an evil master plan! It's one of those phrases that I find my students quoting.
Did not read a lot of young adult books this weekend. Read Hal Herzog's Some We Love, Some We Hate, Some We Eat:why it's so hard to think straight about animals , which was interesting, and a scholarly biography of Lillian Moller Gilbreth, Making Time. Wow, we should all be able to work until we are 90! What an amazing woman.
Also found an excellent use for the Kindle. I paid a whopping 89 cents to obtain the e version of Christopher Morley's The Haunted Bookshop (1919), the sequel to Parnassus on Wheels, which I am almost ashamed to say I have in my school library. It was good! Since it is about an antiquarian bookseller, many books and authors are mentioned, and I was able to download samples of the works mentioned! It was a bit distracting, but since most of the titles are ones no longer held by circulating libraries, it was awesome to be able to read them.