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The Tripods Attack!

3.84  ·  Rating Details  ·  57 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
Faith and adventure combine in The Tripods Attack!, the first book of The Young Chesterton Chronicles a delightfully inventive new fiction series that re-imagines GK Chesterton, HG Wells, and Fr.Brown in an alternative Edwardian Age of steam driven wonders and sinister conspiracies.
Paperback, 367 pages
Published March 1st 2008 by Imagio
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(showing 1-30 of 127)
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Dec 31, 2011 CatholicBibliophagist rated it really liked it
Shelves: kid-lit, 2011
Currently rereading this because I've just gotten a copy of the second book in the series and want to be able to judge it in the context of the first.


Hey, still good the second time around!

In an alternate universe, young G.K. Chesterton meets the young H.G. Wells while on assignment to write about some strange "meteors." Yep, it's the War of the Worlds as the Martians invade England. The two young men are soon joined by Father Brown and a mysterious fellow known only as The Doctor (but n
Jeffrey Arrowood
Jun 23, 2010 Jeffrey Arrowood rated it it was amazing
Despite criticisms from G.K. Chesterton purists, Tripods Attack deserves lauds for a number of reasons. First, it's just a good piece of fiction in its own right. John McNichol incorporates a classic War of the Worlds theme within an alternate universe. The story itself is well-written, gripping and captivating.

Second, the Catholic worldview is woven into the text in a natural, unobtrusive way. It is simply part of the fabric of the story. It very much reminds me of the unique quality of Catholi
Marlene  Schuler
Jun 12, 2013 Marlene Schuler rated it it was amazing
At first glance, this looks like an amazingly nutty book. I mean... personally, if this did not have "The Young Chesterton Chronicles" brandied across the bottom of the cover, I probably would not have picked it up.

Do not let the cover fool you.

It's not what it seems. There is so much in between the covers of this book- action, adventure, Steampunk inventions, an alternate universe, Martians, Catholicism, Chesterton, debates, philosophy... it's mind boggling, fresh, exciting, and like nothing
Julie Davis
Jan 03, 2012 Julie Davis rated it liked it
I read the second book first just because this original novel was being reprinted at the time. Here I got the backstory for a steampunk world where young Gilbert Chesterton, recently orphaned, went from his home in Minnesota and found himself working in a computer factor in England (they call it something else, but punchcards and machines work everything so these are early computers). Downtrodden, barely making a living, and with no discernibly bright future, Gil is unexpectedly called into the ...more
Oct 04, 2015 Matthew rated it liked it
Much better than I thought it was going to be.

Okay, that was my original review. But I thought the book deserved more than that. I am not a G.K. Chesterton scholar. I have only read some of his nonfiction work. I've never read a Father Brown mystery. I am a sci-fi fan. I've read most of H.g. Wells' work. I also love alternative history/steampunk sub-genres of sci-fi. This book fits well into that mold. It was fun, exciting, a bit old-fashioned in style and a good read.

I look forward to reading
Nov 18, 2014 Polly rated it liked it
3.5 stars

I really enjoyed this book! Lots of action and fun. The reason for the 3.5 stars is the descriptions of the martians and their...*cough* habits. It was just a little to much for me. Despite that though, I really enjoyed the book.

I definitely recommend the book! A forewarning though if your a little squeamish, be prepared for a few unnerving scenes.

(view spoiler)
Erin Cupp
Sep 12, 2014 Erin Cupp rated it really liked it
In this first book of The Young Chesterton Chronicles, we have a young, skinny (I know, right?) Gil Chesterton, born into a completely foreign universe. I mean, literally foreign: he spent his childhood in Minnesota. We also have his new buddy Herb Wells and this quietly tough little priest… Really, Tripods is a rollicking wooden roller coaster through a number of different fictional universes. Hm. Take that roller coaster and turn it into a “dark ride,” and voila! Tripods. Think fanfic for the ...more
Feb 09, 2011 Elizabeth rated it really liked it
I'm really excited for the next one to come out. It was a pretty good book that reminded me a lot of "The Man Who Was Thursday," probably because it was written in the style of Chesterton... I thought it was fascinating that the main characters were based off of H.G. Wells, G.K. Chesterton, and Fr. Brown from the Father Brown Mysteries Series (by G.K. Chesterton). Good read. I'd probably have to read it again to catch everything I missed the first time. :)
Jennifer Fitz
I really enjoyed this. Learned about it via Jeff Miller at the Curt Jester, and snatched it up at my local Catholic bookstore. No regrets, I'm now a member of the John McNichol fan club.

Recommended for folks who like fun genre action-adventure, and particularly those with a fondness for GKC. Suitable for middle school and up. Has a couple gory alien battle scenes that squeamish mothers might want to skim, but boys seem to like, go figure.
Aug 28, 2015 Becky rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015-read
What a fun adventure series and a bit scary. I love the steampunk era and this book has some unexpected twists of fate that I haven't encountered before. Great for young adult readers, girls and boys. Hey I'm a mom and I thought it was good too!
Mia Silva
Feb 20, 2015 Mia Silva rated it really liked it
A wonderful book. Love the mix of sci-fi, adventure, and more. First book in the Young Chesterton Chronicles.
Feb 17, 2009 Patrick rated it liked it
Amusing, well-written historical fiction that blends Christian and steampunk elements.
Jan 11, 2013 Maggie rated it liked it
This book gets an overall meh. Poorly written, cliched, and with in-your-face-but-trying-to-be-subtle-ish Catholicism. However, I did enjoy it. The idea is fun, if silly (a teenaged G. K. Chesterton reimagined running through an alternate version of Edwardian England as an American (!!!) while aliens attack), it's mildly entertaining, has occasional flashes of humor and is edifying in the sense that it is a harmless diversion with Catholic themes. In other words, it's like Regina Doman writing a ...more
It was okay.

I was never truly interested.

The characters weren't as brilliant as I expected for who they were supposed to be.

The Doctor was a huge letdown. He was cruel and just horrible. I wasn't sure if the author was implying that this "Doctor" was a version of "the Doctor" from "Doctor Who" or what. If so, that would make it doubly worse.

The writing dragged on and on and on.

Plot was iffy at best. Rather a "War of the Worlds" theme.

I probably wouldn't recommend it.
Jan 23, 2014 Will rated it it was ok
First, be warned that the "Chesterton" of this steampunk novel is not really Chesterton, but an AMERICAN character from an alternate history. And WATSON as a villain! Words fail me.

I was also disappointed by apparent plagiarism from "The League of Extraordinary Gentlement".
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John McNichol was born in Toronto, Canada, in 1970, and spent the first eighteen years of his life there before attending Franciscan University of Steubenville, where he met his wife, Jeanna. Today, they live with their seven children in Vancouver, Washington, where John earned Master's degrees in English Literature and Education, and teaches middle school.
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