Six British kids save the world in this suspenseful, comic romp through Switzerland’s famed CERN laboratories.
Iago leads a pack of diverse and talented kids in his attempt to save the world from annihilation by a mad scientist, Katarina Kreng, an over-the-top villain who intends to create a black hole that will swallow the Earth. She’ll use subatomic particles called killer strangelets in the CERN Large Hadron Collider, where Iago’s Uncle Jonas works, to accomplish her dastardly deed. The group of young heroes hops a private plane to Switzerland and plots their attack using schematic drawings stolen from Uncle Jonas. While one wields his hacking skills to open doors and dig up information, Iago and his secret heartthrob Charlie, his pretty female friend, try to infiltrate the facility. Suspense ensues when they succeed. Furlong keeps the narrative brisk and full of light humor, although the preposterous tale remains a bit of a jumble. The kids appear to be middle-school age, and that seems to be the book’s natural audience, although some older readers may enjoy it. Reminiscent of the Alex Rider series for a younger set, this appears headed toward James Bond–style mayhem but with as much an emphasis on comedy as on suspense.
Lots of fun for the right audience. (Comic suspense. 9-13)