Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Phoenix Rising by Bryony Pearce

Phoenix RisingMy name is Toby, and my father is captain of the Phoenix. The Phoenix may appear to be a pirate ship due to the criminals manning the small crew, but we mostly sail the garbage-filled seas looking for wreckage to salvage. Resources are scarce, and our hopes rest in finding the location of a sunken ship containing solar panels. However, a rival pirate ship called the Banshee is hunting us down and is determined to loot our ship. The hunt for our ship seems to be personal to the Banshee's captain, and that became obvious during their recent attack. The captain said she wanted to kill me in front of my father before killing him. The captain's daughter Ayla, also her first mate, is a fearsome fighter, but she's also very cute. She scares me, but I can't help liking her. I thought we had left the Banshee far behind us, but Ayla reappeared at a most unexpected time. My father was taken prisoner in Tarifa and now she's come aboard the Phoenix, offering to help in his rescue. What is she up to?

I enjoyed this new book, and I'm looking forward to the sequel. The unusual relationship between Toby and Ayla, both enemies and friends, creates an interesting conflict. Toby's affection for Ayla is evident even though he doesn't trust her. Even though Ayla risks her life to save Toby's father, I kept waiting for the moment when she would turn on them. You must read the book to find out if that moment ever comes. It's hard to imagine a setting with the level of pollution described in the book. The front of the Phoenix was extra strong to enable it to move through oceans full of debris. It's similar to a navy destroyer cutting through ice in Arctic waters. It took awhile to figure out where the plot was headed, but it later introduced the solar panels and the search for an uninhabited island. The fact that Toby has never set foot on land in his entire life reinforces the importance of finding a land where the pirates can settle. I highly recommend you give this book a shot!

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