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The Android by K. A. Applegate
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This one was flat for me, though it's a favorite in the series for lots of other fans. It's certainly packed with action, and the storyline moves swiftly- a bit too quick, as I really felt a lack of detail.

In a nutshell, the boys morph dogs to sneak into an outdoor concert, and run into an acquaintance of Jake's who seems- weird. They witness a decidedly strange incident that convinces them the guy's not human. Later they morph spiders and flies at an outdoor event to spy on him- and nearly get exposed when Marco-as-spider is eaten by a bird and has to escape by morphing back to human form in mid-air (and mid-bird, which could be gross except it's light on description). Of course someone sees him falling to earth, but it's the very guy they suspected. Who knows exactly what they are, and tells them he's infiltrated the enemy forces but is really on their side. Suspicious, they still have to learn more, so they visit his supposed home- and find another huge underground living space, this one for an alien race of androids. The history of this android race and how it fit into the fight against the Yeerks was just- a bit out there for me. I just couldn't suspend disbelief enough for this one. Even more than the android storyline, was the idea that dogs had absorbed the essence of another, entirely peaceful race of aliens that had gone extinct due to the Yeerks. Yes, the idea here is that aliens turned wolves into dogs. Anyhow, it gives some of the androids a reason to oppose the Yeerks even though complete pacifist mentality is written into their code.

So they need the Animorphs to steal back a special crystal the Yeerks have in a stronghold, which would allow them to control all the computer systems on Earth. Stakes are high and the Animorphs don't have time to prepare. They sneak into the building as roaches and spiders, narrowly avoid being eaten by a rat, and navigate a pitch-black room of tripwires as bats, only to find when they reach the crystal, that they can't carry it out of the room without using another form. So they morph into their 'battle animals' and blast out of there, only to be met by enemy forces with machine guns. This time there's no easy way out- they fight and are all about to die except in a final moment Marco manages to get the crystal into the android's hands, who then rewrites his code so he can annihilate the Yeerk forces singlehandedly. It's so awful the scene isn't even described because Marco (our narrator) went unconscious after nearly dying. And the memory of what he's done is so horrific for the android- who can never dull or forget a single memory- that the androids withdraw, vowing not to get involved again.

Traumatized androids. Lots of heavy discussion in this book about the ethics of warfare. No easy answers. Even that didn't make it interesting enough for me; I kind of had to make myself finish the book. The two new animal forms- spider and bat- were introduced and utilized so quickly, I wasn't able to enjoy that aspect of the story. It was all just fast-paced, action-packed and meh for me. Not my kind of read.

from the Dogear Diary ( )
  jeane | Feb 5, 2019 |
The Android was a strange entry to the series. The plot was very slow to get moving and didn't feel quite as action-packed as some of the recent instalments. The opening shared some similarities with The Invasion and The Visitor, as Marco tailed a loose acquaintance to find out if he was a Controller. Yet the stakes seemed a little lower this time as Marco admitted that he wasn't all that close to Erek.

Marco's narrative was as entertaining as ever. I love his snark and do really enjoy reading the stories told from his perspective. However, his attitude did get on my nerves at time. While Cassie tends to be unable to see the wood for the trees, Marco has a different problem. He's so fixated on protecting his father that he would sacrifice others to meet that end.

This leads to the best part of the novel - the climax. Erek's actions over the last twenty pages cause the novel to take a surprisingly dark turn. The Animorphs claim a rather pyrrhic victory this time around which I found to be very interesting. It's nice to see that their plans don't always work out - at the end of the day they're kids engaging in a battle they don't fully understand. It seems natural that they won't always beat the Yeerks.

It may not have been the strongest novel but I certainly preferred it over The Secret. ( )
  ArkhamReviews | Jul 18, 2016 |
A short comment for every book of the series until I get a chance to re-read them. All three of my sons and I loved this series and read every single book - I even bought every single book (most, but not all, used; some through school book sales). I'm excited to re-read them to see how the five main characters develop and to watch all the different transformations again.

The best books appeal to *readers* universally - not children versus adults. These may not be quite worthy of the adjective 'best' but they do have that crossover appeal. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
Animorphs was a good series that kept me reading. Enjoyed these as a kid. ( )
  odinblindeye | Apr 2, 2013 |
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Book description
Marco convinces Jake to sneak into a concert as dogs. While there, they come across a boy who has no smell- a boy who is also distributing flyers for the Sharing. The Animorphs form a plan to discover just who this boy is and what part he has in the Yeerks' invasion.
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Marco finds out Erek's been hanging with the kids at The Sharing. And he starts to think that something just a little weird is going on. So Marco, Jake, and Ax decide to morph and check old Erek out.

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