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The Dark Deeps (Hunchback Assignments)

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The Dark Deeps

Hunchback Assignments

By Arthur Slade

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Format: Paperback, 272 pages
Published In: Australia, 01 June 2010
Modo - teenage spy and temporary shape-shifter - is plunged once more into the world of international espionage. This time he's on the trail of a mysterious underwater creature, and he's not alone. Mr Socrates orders Modo and his beautiful fellow agent Octavia Milkweed to investigate the disappearance of the Permanent Association's New York agent. From there, they follow a trail of clues that will lead Modo to an ingenious machine known only as the Ictineo, and a fabled underwater city ruled by pirates. There, Modo confronts Colette, a French agent with secrets of her own. Is she friend or foe? Meanwhile, on his secret island, Dr Hyde has been conducting a new and hideous experiment. When Miss Hakkandottir, Modo's nemesis from the Clockwork Guild, arrives to hijack the Ictineo, Modo must use all his ingenuity to track down an unseen force, even if it means revealing his true self.


Gr 7-10-Modo is back with more bizarre shape-shifting, daring espionage, and exciting steampunk adventures. Mr. Socrates's agents have been following the exploits of a French spy named Colette Chiyoko Brunet when she disappears unexpectedly. Modo and his partner from the first book, Octavia, are ordered to pose as husband and wife in order to investigate something referred to in Colette's documents as the Ictineo, or "new fish." They suspect that this may be a new kind of boat, or mechanical narwhal designed to sink ships. What they don't realize is that someone very dangerous is also on its trail. Modo and Octavia's journey will lead Modo to the depths of the ocean and straight into another conflict with the Clockwork Guild. Modo is an innocent character who is easily teased and is very honorable. His tentative affection for the streetwise and reckless Octavia is touching, but, like Modo, readers aren't sure that she can be trusted with his greatest secret: the deformity of his real face. In this book, readers begin to see that there is more to the stoic Mr. Socrates than was originally revealed. The only problem with the characterization is that the "bad guys" are simply evil, with little nuance of character. On the surface, this is a simple Victorian adventure that will be accessible to lower-level readers. However, there are allusions and references to some of great classic authors that will allow this novel to be an exciting read for those who want to mine more from its depths.-Heather M. Campbell, formerly at Philip S. Miller Library, Castle Rock, CO (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

EAN: 9780732290450
ISBN: 0732290457
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers (Australia) Pty Ltd
Dimensions: 20.8 x 13.7 x 2.4 centimetres (0.25 kg)
Age Range: 10-14 years
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