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Predator's Gold

Predator’s Gold is the second novel in the YA sci-fi/dystopia Predator Cities quartet by Philip Reeve.

If you haven’t read Mortal Engines yet, I strongly recommend you do before you read this review and get some inevitable spoilers. You can read my review of that first book here.

Now, if you have read Mortal Engines feel free to continue…

Since the Traction City of London was demolished, Tom and Hester have spent the last two years flying the Jenny Haniver, trading and seeing the world. Their relationship has deepened, and the two have found a kernel of contentment after all the pain.

Yet an acclaimed author/adventurer named Pennyroyal asks for passage on their aircraft and when ordinarily they’d say no, they say yes. And suddenly they’re being pursued by rocket-firing gunships!

Their modicum of peace seems to be over.

Finding refuge in the ice city of Anchorage, Tom finds himself remembering how much he liked living on a Traction City. He starts to dread taking to the sky again. Hester, though, sees a city devastated by plague and madness. It’s a ghost city – sprawling but inhabiting only a few.

And Anchorage’s course is headed straight towards the Dead Continent of North America – a perilous path and hopeless destination.

Their adventure isn’t over…

Predator’s Gold has a startling, attention-grabbing first paragraph that reminds me what a great writer Reeve is. What a way to start!

I have to admit, I was pleased to pieces to see Tom and Hester’s romance, with time having passed in the interim between books, and strengthened. It made me happy! Of course that meant I cared, which meant I was in for a sometimes painful read!

Freya and her Traction City of Anchorage have an enigmatic, creepy feel… I was intrigued and nervous for our lovebirds. And I was right to be, as emotional turmoil begins here – jealously and bitterness start to poison relationships, and upsetting turns take place!

I was excited with the journey to America just because I was really wondering what they’d find there, but the characters’ personal relationships were hurting my heart!!! No details here, you’ll have to read it for yourself… but suffice to say Philip Reeve has made me connect to these people, and these people have flaws and make mistakes… and its agony!

Predator’s Gold has some amazing writing – sentences that Reeve constructs are equally complicated and lovely. Intense imagery and emotive prose. And the characters are three-dimensional, not always likable, but always fascinating! It can be disturbing, disheartening, and heartbreaking... but consistently absorbing.

As we reach a surprising, sweet, thrilling, ever-unpredictable end I was satisfied and more ready than ever to read the next book in the quartet! I can see why people have raved about this series!!!

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