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Predator's Gold (The Hungry City…

Predator's Gold (The Hungry City Chronicles) (original 2003; edition 2006)

by Philip Reeve

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Title:Predator's Gold (The Hungry City Chronicles)
Authors:Philip Reeve
Info:HarperTeen (2006), Paperback, 416 pages
Collections:Your library

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Predator's Gold by Philip Reeve (2003)



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Tom Natsworth and Hester Shaw's adventures continue, as they are caught up in a swirl of treacherous manoeuverings following the events of Mortal Engines. Caught up in the hunt to destroy the traction city of Anchorage, they stumble upon a plot by the Anti-Traction League's Green Storm unit to resurrect Anna Fang as a Stalker. Along the way, they meet the thieving Lost Boys, the duplicitous historian Pennyroyal, and the last surviving member of the Rasmussen clan of Anchorage, Freya, the Margravine. ( )
  Bill_Bibliomane | Dec 10, 2013 |
The sequel to Mortal Engines a book which didn't really need a sequel, IMO, but still Predator's Gold does not disappoint. And it is rather a nifty world.

For the unintiated, these stories are set in a post-nuclear Europe. The landscape has long been rendered uninhabitable and America all but destroyed in the 60 minute war. Cities are now mobile structures (traction cities) that travel around the landscape and canabilise smaller cities, hamlets and villages. Yes, you have predator suburbs, scavengers, pirate airships and other such coolnesses. Yes, I realise now that I may have derived the term "scavengers" from here as well, but I have always listed "Mortal Engines" in my inspiration list (and what a long list it was).

Anyhow, Mortal Engines begins the adventures of young Tom, historian, as he is snatched from his moderately comfortable life in the traction city of London by the horrifically scarred Hester and Predator's Gold continues their tale. After the wake of the MEDUSA disaster, they have now found themselves aboard the winter city of Anchorage, half its inhabitants dead of the plague or fled, bound on a dangerous journey to the dead continent following the findings of a bumbling historian. And danger, of course, is close on their tails, as the great predator city of Arkangel hunts it across the frozen wastelands.

I would hope this would be the last one, but now I think about it, there is definite hints at a sequel where the anti-traction league will likely face off against the traction cities with the aid of the terrible Stalkers. I just hope poor Tom and Hester get a bit of a break.

These books are something a little bit different - cyberpunk I suppose might be an appropriate term, and definitely quirky - good for someone who likes a truly original, fun but tense, read. ( )
  LemurKat | Sep 12, 2013 |
Second book from the Hungry Cities Chronicles series picks the story of our two young heroes, Tom Natsworthy and Hester Shaw, two years after the climactic events at the conclusion of Mortal Engines. After spending those years away they're now back in the familiar environs of the Great Hunting Ground but there are some people who remember them and others who're willing to pay for the information that they've returned. After an encounter with a hunter for the city of Arkangel they decide it's time to leave Airhaven and as they've not secured a cargo agree to take a passenger with them as they depart. The passenger, the renowned historian/explorer Pennyroyal, also seems in a hurry to leave and so off they set. It's not too long into their journey that things start to go wrong as they are set upon by three gunships from a fanatical arm of the Anti-Traction League. Barely managing to escape and with their own craft severely damaged they just manage to find a city travelling the icy wastes where they can touch down and hopefully make repairs.

The city of Anchorage has seen better days though. Most of it's citizens have either left or died of plague but those who have stayed are devoted to the young Margravine, Freya, who has found herself in charge. Freya has set a course for the Dead Continent and it seems the gods have approved by delivering Pennyroyal, author of America the Beautiful, into her lap at just the right moment. Freya has also set her sights on Tom as well and much to Hester's chagrin, Tom seems to enjoy the time he's spending with the Margravine and Hester thinks she might be travelling on alone when repairs to their ship have been completed. With the repairs barely completed, Hester spies Freya kissing Tom so she flies off in a jealous rage and comes up with a desperate plan to win Tom back. She sells the location of Anchorage to Arkangel's hunters but refuses the normal predator's gold for agreement that she will rescue Tom from the impending destruction of the city and enslavement of its people. But plans have a habit of going awry and this one's no different as Hester is kidnapped before she can set off to rescue Tom. Strange things are also happening back in Anchorage with odd items going missing and the chief engineer keeps thinking he's seeing the ghost of his dead son. Can Tom get to the bottom of the mystery or will the mystery get to him first?

This is an entertaining action/adventure story designed primarily for early teens (or just a little younger) but there is enough here to enjoy for older readers. There is enough character development and the promise of an ongoing story arc to continue through later books in the series and I will be more than happy to read the next one in the series at some time. ( )
  AHS-Wolfy | Jun 2, 2013 |
It was an interesting enough start and I read a good chunk in the first sitting, but I felt no compulsion to return to it. :shrug:
  GinnyTea | Mar 31, 2013 |
Predator's Gold is the follow-up novel to Mortal Engines which I read a few weeks ago. The story picks up more than two years after Mortal Engines finished. I think one really needs to have read the first book to appreciate this one. Reeve didn't really capture my interest strongly this time. We begin within a strange setup in the mobile city of Anchorage skating across the arctic. Much of the story takes place in this city. Like Mortal Engines, Reeve continues to play with airship names - the first new airship we encounter is a small attack ship, the "Clear Air Turbulence", an homage to the pirate space raider from Iain Bank's 1987 novel Consider Phlebas. Having just read "Consider Phlebas" my eyes did widen a bit at the coincidence. Reeve pays homage to more than a few things in fact, incorporating pieces of several works of literature such as "The Lost Boys" and an Oliver-like scenario with the boys complete with a Fagin. There's more than that too. There's so much of this that it bothered me a little.

I liked this story "OK", but not nearly as much as the first book in the series. Characters from Mortal Engines, good and bad, were mostly dead by the end of that book, as was the city of London in which significant events occurred. The characters in this book, Predator's Gold, didn't seem as interesting, nor did most of the storyline itself. Tom and Hester return from the first novel, Mortal Engines, and begin the novel now solidly in love. I felt sorry for Hester in the first book, but can't say I really liked her. I do feel a bit sorry for her again this time, but her behavior here is pretty awful. Problems arise in the story with the relationship between Tom and Hester fractured. Neither of the two behave perticularly sensibly, but Hester rather flips out with dire consequences. The strong point of this book is the future post-apocalyptic world that we learn a little more about and the adventures we participate in as reader's. Of the several new characters I just didn't care at all for the pompous Prof. Pennyroyal, but did take a strong liking to the "Lost Boy" Caul. He added an interesting viewpoint to the novel.

There are some other interesting things in this book as well. Overall I found myself somewhat disappointed in this novel. I don't think I'd call this a sophomore slump since it still is an enjoyable (although dark) story. Perhaps I was expecting too much from the follow-up to a strong debut. I'm looking forward to reading future books in the series at some point, however. ( )
  RBeffa | Mar 5, 2012 |
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Freya woke early and lay for a while in the dark, feeling her city shiver and sway beneath her as its powerful engines sent it skimming across the ice.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0060721960, Paperback)

"Predator's Gold" is the second thrilling instalment in Philip Reeve's brilliantly-imagined creation, the world of the Traction Era, where mobile cities fight for survival in a post-apocalyptic future. When Tom and Hester's scrapyard aircraft is pursued by rocket-firing gunships, they seek sanctuary in the speeding ice city of Anchorage. But it is no safe refuge. Devastated by plague and haunted by ghosts, Anchorage is heading for the Dead Continent...'Big, brave, brilliant' - "Guardian". Philip Reeve has won the CILIP Carnegie Medal, the "Guardian" Children's Fiction Prize, the Nestle Children's Book Prize and the Blue Peter Book of the Year.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:55:37 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

In the distant future, when cities move about and consume smaller towns, Tom and Hester hope that the ice city of Anchorage will reach the rumored haven of the Dead Continent--America--before the savage Hunstmen of Arkangel find them.

(summary from another edition)

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