Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Max Tilt: 80 Days or Die (Max Tilt #2)

Lerangis, Peter. Max Tilt: 80 Days or Die (Max Tilt #2) 
July 24th 2018 by HarperCollins
Copy provided by Young Adult Books Central

After finding an enormous treasure with his cousin Alex, Max's family has built a big new house and is enjoying their good fortune, especially since his mother's cancer is in remission. However, Max's friend Evelyn's scleroderma worsens, and he and Alex travel to London for the funeral of Basile. While there, they meet Basile's niece, Bitsy, and find that there may be a secret cure, the clues to which are in the London Reform Society archives in a paper left by Verne himself. With the help of their uncle Nigel, Max, Alex and Bitsy set off on an 80 Days Around the World style adventure to find the ingredients for a cure they hope will help their friend. Unfortunately, Nigel leaves them to go out on his own and collect the ingredients before they do, but this does not stop the friends from a whirlwind adventure through Greece, Siberia, Nepal, South America and Antarctica. Their quest takes on even more urgency when Max's mother's cancer returns, and eventually, his father calls him back. Luckily, they have found all of the ingredients, but after using them successfully on Max's mother and Evelyn, some go missing, insuring that more adventures will occur.

Readers who enjoy puzzles, clues, and cross continent travel reminiscent of the Cahill's and Vesper's adventures in The Thirty-Nine Clues series will enjoy riding along with Alex, Max and Bitsy as they try to beat the clock and gather exotic ingredients from even more exotic locations. The fact that they have unlimited funds due to their previous adventures makes the travel portion of this seem more possible!

Max is on the autism spectrum, which leads to occasional odd behavior that surprises new people they meet. His emotions have smells, he interprets things literally, and he sometimes asks awkward questions. This is not a huge part of the plot, just an added richness in Max's character, which is a nice way to add diversity to an adventure series.

I often recommend that readers alternate series while waiting for the next book in a new series to come out, and Max Tilt is a fun addition to an action/adventure line up that includes Stokes' Addison Cooke Vegas' Pyramid Hunters and Nix's Time Twisters.
Ms. Yingling

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