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Fires of Invention (Mysteries of Cove)

by J. Scott Savage

Series: Mysteries of Cove (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
10610258,924 (3.98)1
Fantasy. Juvenile Fiction. Science Fiction & Fantasy. HTML:

Trenton Colman is a creative thirteen-year-old boy with a knack for all things mechanical. But his talents are viewed with suspicion in Cove, a steam-powered city built inside a mountain. In Cove, creativity is a crime, and invention is a curse word.

Kallista Babbage is a repair technician and daughter of the notorious Leo Babbage, who died in an explosionâ??an event the leaders of Cove point to as an example of the dangers of creativity.

Working together, Trenton and Kallista learn that Leo Babbage was developing a secret project before he perished. Following clues he left behind, they begin to assemble a strange machine that is unlike anything they've ever seen before. They soon discover that what they are building may threaten every truth their city is founded onâ??and quite possibly their very lives… (more)

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Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
This is a story that grows on you. All the characters are interesting and even though there's attraction between Trenton and Simoni, you know it's not strong enough to survive as events get more intense and frequent. The ending is one that begs you to grab the next book. ( )
  sennebec | Aug 22, 2022 |
It was okay. ( )
  pacbox | Jul 9, 2022 |
A lot of fun, a dystopian steam punk mystery. Some things were a little over the top and a few things were silly/unbelievable but I'm am adult who has read 1000's of books and I don't think kids are gong to notice the sane things. My 9 year old has read it several times inn the past year and loves it! In terms of appropriateness, there is a mild romance: hand holding and middle school "going out". No swearing. Mild or implied violence.
( )
  wrightja2000 | Sep 6, 2018 |
Starts out pretty reminiscent of works like City of Ember and The Giver, and there were a lot of bits that felt a bit too predictable. But then there’s a twist that I really didn’t see coming and which shifts to the plot into something more unique. (I was really intrigued by the concept of the constant advance of technology destroying the environment and causing us to move underground. Since, y'know, it isn’t outside the realm of possibility, see e-waste. A little disappointed with how this wasn’t quite the case.) There were times I really couldn’t wait to see what would happen and others when I had to force myself to keep reading. (I’m not sure if this is a fault of the pacing or my own interests and impatience.) Overall, a solid read. And I am interested to find out where the story will go in the sequel.

Librarian perspective alert: This book really ties into the whole maker culture thing. It’s a very STEM-y/STEAM-y book. Definitely worth incorporating in your collection if you’ve got a population of middle-grade makers!

ARC provided by Net Galley. ( )
  nwessler | Jun 20, 2018 |
This is the first book in the Mysteries of Cove series. This book started out a bit slow but I really enjoyed the last third or so of it. The last part of the book was enough to really pull me in and make me want to read more of this series. This is marketed as a middle grade steampunk book; which it really isn't. It is more of a middle grade dystopian novel. The society of Cove is definitely a dystopia of sorts.

The only steampunk element in this book is that our two main heroes build a dragon out of metal and it is driven by a combustion engine. There are no other steampunky items in here.

That doesn't mean this isn't a good book. I really enjoyed some of the twists and turns at the end of the book and thought the book was well written. I enjoyed the characters as well, they were easy to relate to. Additionally, I loved the crazy hunt for secrets our characters end up on.

I would like to say that, although the mechanical dragon makes an impressive cover, it is a huge spoiler for this book. Part of the huge mystery in this book is what Trenton and Kallista are building and the cover spoils this mystery right away...very poor cover choice in my opinion. It spoiled a lot of the story for me.

Overall I really enjoyed this dystopian middle grade novel. There are some really unique story elements especially at the end. I enjoyed the characters and the riddles they have to solve throughout. My 10 year old son did start this book but stopped reading it because he thought the beginning was boring. I agree...the beginning was boring, but the ending made it all worth it. I convinced him to pick it up again and finish it so we'll see what he thinks. I plan on continuing the series. ( )
  krau0098 | Jan 27, 2018 |
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Fantasy. Juvenile Fiction. Science Fiction & Fantasy. HTML:

Trenton Colman is a creative thirteen-year-old boy with a knack for all things mechanical. But his talents are viewed with suspicion in Cove, a steam-powered city built inside a mountain. In Cove, creativity is a crime, and invention is a curse word.

Kallista Babbage is a repair technician and daughter of the notorious Leo Babbage, who died in an explosionâ??an event the leaders of Cove point to as an example of the dangers of creativity.

Working together, Trenton and Kallista learn that Leo Babbage was developing a secret project before he perished. Following clues he left behind, they begin to assemble a strange machine that is unlike anything they've ever seen before. They soon discover that what they are building may threaten every truth their city is founded onâ??and quite possibly their very lives

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