After having completed Child Of Atlantis – Ascension, given that the book ended on a tidy little cliffhanger, it was clear that I wasn’t going to get off of this ride and immediately started with book 2 of the series, Child Of Atlantis – Destiny. However, writer Perry Covington isn’t one of those writers who recycles with themes and variations. Instead Destiny clearly shows that he has a plan for these characters and the universe they inhabit.
While Ascension dealt largely with the character of Max, we only get the briefest of revisits in Destiny’s prologue as he is still wrapped up in the “interesting situation” he was left in at the end of that first story, only not only does it not resolve, it also leaves the reader with even greater questions than before, after which we are then put right into Chapter 1 where we are reintroduced to Wayland Smith, Max’s best friend, and despite being told still from the Omniscient POV (the writer makes known all of the thoughts of each or as many of the characters as he/she sees fit), it is through Wayland’s thoughts that we learn just a bit more about Max as well as himself and the friendship he has with Max. Then, just as with Ascension, the pace jumps to 100 mph when some unsavory people show up to have a chat with Wayland, only to be rescued by some of Max’s “Scooby Gang” and then spirit him away to safety amongst the other Atlanteans, and then finally learns that he too is of that same mysterious lineage as Max. Not long after that he is reunited with Max (the resolution to Max’s situation is left deliberately mysterious) and brought into the fold with all of Max’s friends, after which they embark on a mission to try to thwart the plans that have been put into motion by enemies of the peaceful people of Atlantis. Along the way they meet new people, gain new friends and allies, and face a peril that could literally destroy the world as they know it.
Much like Ascension, this is a book for young adults, and yet at my age it never feels like it’s talking down to me. Covington has again managed to strike a really good balance between making this a young adult sci-fi/fantasy, and something more along the lines of The Last Sun. He clearly has characters whom are quite fully realized in their development. Each of them has their own voice and set of motivations, which makes it easy to almost “hear” their voices in your head, thereby creating the perfect “theater of the mind” experience. There are moments that do seem somewhat truncated in their development and storytelling, but never at the expense of the overall story itself. Those points that are dealt with mysteriously and not entirely answered are done so deliberately. Covington revisits them just enough times to inform you that answers to those questions will be forthcoming, and that we, just as much as Max and Wayland, need to be patient in order to receive those answers, for they will come precisely when we need them to, and not a moment sooner.
Even more so than with Ascension, this was a book I could not put down. By introducing us to new characters Covington was able to slightly alter the tone of the story, and yet remain true to its spirit. As much as the adventure is still there, the presence of Wayland almost turns this into an action/comedy, as there were several moments where Wayland would react to a situation that quite literally had me laughing out loud. And as with Ascension, this book also ends on the most abrupt of cliffhangers, only this time it had the impact of Star Trek: The Next Generation’s “The Best Of Both Worlds” type of ending, for as soon as it happened I almost cried out “NOOOOOO!!!!” However I had the great pleasure in knowing there was a book three, although it was at that point that I made a rather disquieting discovery. In my previous review I had stated that all of the books are out. I could not have been more wrong as this appears to be a 7 book series, and only at this time are the first three books released. However this should not dissuade you from picking these books up. They are pure fun with some of the most amazing characters, placed in some of the most outrageously dire situations. It is a fun, runaway thrill ride that must be read!
Child Of Atlantis – Destiny receives 4 out of 5 Swords!
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