Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The Lost Compass

26198855Ross, Joel. The Lost Compass
May 24th 2016 by HarperCollins

After narrowly escaping Kodoc in The Fog Diver, Chess is once again injured, and he and his friends are trying to get Mrs. E. to safety at Port Oro. There, he meets two leaders who also have fog in their eyes, but theirs is a result of an experiment that failed, and their eyes are now glass. They want Chess to travel to the bottom floor of the Station to locate a map that will tell them more about the Compass, which is supposed to somehow clean the nanites out of the air when the time is right. Chess does find the map, but Kodoc is hot on his tail, attacking his friends whenever possible. Chess eventually realizes what the Compass is, and how the air will be cleaned, but also thinks he has lead Kodoc to it and is responsible for it being bombed. Luckily, this is not the case, and by the end of the book, it looks good for Port Oro that the fog will be cleared up. 
Strengths: Good world building, fun characters who have convincing interactions, and lots of action and adventure.
Weaknesses: The history in the father's scrapbook leads to any number of misremembered things- parking greeters instead of meters, e eaters instead of e readers, etc. I always find this sort of thing overly precious and annoying. Kodoc is exceptionally mean, which seemed odd for this book somehow. 

What I really think: I'm not the audience for this one. I'll buy it, although the first book has not done as well as I'd hoped with my students, since it won the Cybils Middle Grade Speculative Fiction award. 

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