Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

A Hero for WondLa

A Hero for WondLa

Tony DiTerlizzi
Fiction  Series
For ages 10 and up
Simon and Schuster, 2012   ISBN: 978-1416983125

Eva Nine is thrilled because she has not only met her first human, but she is now going to travel to a city full of humans. Finally she is going to go home, she is going to be able to live in a community where she belongs, and where she fits in.

Feeling incredibly excited, Eva Nine boards the Bijou. Piloted by a boy called Hailey, the ship takes about three hours to travel to New Attica. When they arrive, and before Hailey takes her to be registered in the city, Eva Nine meets an old man, Van Turner, who was born in a Sanctuary, just as she was. For some reason that she cannot understand, Van does not want to live in New Attica. Instead he prefers to live on the outskirts, surviving as best he can. He does not like the fact that there are “too many rules” in the city. He wants to have real experiences, and he wants “to live.”

After Eva Nine is registered as a citizen of New Atticus, Hailey leaves her, and the founder of New Atticus, Cadmus Pryde, takes her under his wing. Cadmus Pryde is the man who first came up with the concept of creating Sanctuaries where human babies would be raised my robots so that the human race could be saved. He was convinced that humans were going to destroy Earth and that there would come a time when Sanctuaries would be the only way to safeguard the human species. It turned out that he was right. Earth was destroyed and then brought back to life when visiting aliens jumpstarted the regreening of the planet.

At first Eva Nine does not understand why Van Turner does not like the city. She thinks New Attica is an amazing place. Then she begins to appreciate that the people in the city live a very strange kind of life, one that is devoid of meaning. They are given everything they need to survive. No aliens live in the city, and the people Eva Nine meets think that aliens are not real. In short, they don’t know anything about what exists outside the safety of their city. Even their weather is manufactured.

Then Eva meets someone who really shows her what New Atticus is like and what Cadmus Pryde is up to. She meets Eva Eight, a sister who grew up in the same Sanctuary as she did and who was raised by the same Muther robot. Eva Eight hates Cadmus Pryde and is she is determined to keep Eva Nine out of his clutches. The sisters set about trying to escape from New Atticus, and in the process find out that Cadmus is experimenting on alien species, including on Rovender, Eva Nine’s dearest friend. Clearly Cadmus is up to something, and it is up to Eva Nine, her sister, and their allies to stop him before it is too late.

This extraordinary book picks up where The Search for Wondla left off, and it reveals more about how Earth came to become Orbona, and why Eva Nine was raised in a Sanctuary. The story not only takes readers on an extraordinary adventure, but it also explores the idea that it is vital that we listen to our hearts. We need to embrace our true selves and not let anger cloud our ability to give our love and friendship freely to others.

With colorful characters, a compelling storyline, and a message that speaks to everyone, this is a book that all readers over the age of ten should read.

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