BLACK LIGHT EXPRESS  by Philip Reeve
Kirkus Star

BLACK LIGHT EXPRESS

Age Range: 12 & up
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Reeve picks his story up directly after Railhead (2016), with more of everything, from destruction to fun.

Zen and Nova have discovered a new network populated by numerous alien races (three-legged antelopelike creatures are the least strange). There’s no Datasea or Guardians; even the sentient trains are different, but the rails are the same, and carvings of the mysterious Station Angels point to a shared origin. Meanwhile the Prell corporate family has staged a coup in the Network Empire, and Empress Threnody, accompanied by a professional criminal and a Guardian’s interface, is on the run aboard an old war loco, Ghost Wolf, who is destined to steal readers’ hearts. Reeve’s bizarre but compelling far future boasts a mainly brown population (only the strange, standoffish Prells are white) of people who are equally diverse in their personalities. There are gay AI gods, sentient bugs, and machines who very nearly think they are human but turn out to be so much more. The action-packed plot never flags; Reeve’s great strength is that he can weave worldbuilding and character development into even the most literally explosive scenes; his writing bristles with evocative details, and those details reveal worlds about the characters. Exposition is nearly nonexistent, and yet even new readers can glean enough back story to catch up.

Hop aboard and prepare for the ride of your life. (glossary) (Science fiction. 12-adult)

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 2017
ISBN: 978-1-63079-096-7
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Capstone Young Readers
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15th, 2017




THE 9 MOST OVERLOOKED SUMMER YA NOVELS YOU SHOULD READ:

ChildrenSOLO  by Kwame Alexander
by Kwame Alexander
ChildrenSAINTS AND MISFITS by S.K. Ali
by S.K. Ali
ChildrenSOVEREIGN by April Daniels
by April Daniels
ChildrenWILDMAN by J.C. Geiger
by J.C. Geiger

MORE BY PHILIP REEVE

ChildrenCARNIVAL IN A FIX by Philip Reeve
by Philip Reeve
ChildrenRAILHEAD by Philip Reeve
by Philip Reeve
ChildrenPUGS OF THE FROZEN NORTH by Philip Reeve
by Philip Reeve

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

ChildrenTHE SCORPION RULES by Erin Bow
by Erin Bow
IndieTHE HARMONIES OF MAGIC by Ross Goodell
by Ross Goodell