Raj's Reviews > Mortal Engines

Mortal Engines by Philip Reeve
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's review
Apr 13, 10

bookshelves: sci-fi, post-apocalypse, young-adult
Read from April 11 to 13, 2010 — I own a copy, read count: 1

In a post-apocalyptic future, cities have become mobile and survive in a twisted form of Municipal Darwinism, with towns eating villages and cities eating towns, ripping them apart and incorporating their human and material resources into themselves. The most ancient City of them all, London, has returned from its hiding places to the great Hunting Ground in a mad dash east. Apprentice Historian Tom Natsworthy and the murderous Hester Shaw are hurled from the city and must survive in the wilderness and discover the secret at the heart of London's Guild of Engineers.

I really enjoyed this book. It's a riveting tale with lots of strong characters and a feeling that that none of the protagonists are necessarily safe, but it still packs a punch when someone does die. The world-building is rich and the descriptions are excellent, particularly those of London, in its new mobile form (well, I say 'new', although the novel is set over a thousand years after the creation of the Traction Cities). This is the first in a quartet of novels set in the same world, but I'm not entirely sure that I'd want to read the others, since the climax of this one was so poignant.

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