Visser

Please note that this review may contain spoilers for earlier instalments of this series. You can read my reviews of these novels by clicking the links below:

Animorphs:  1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-19 | 20-22 | 23-27 | 28-32 | 33-37

Megamorphs: The Andalite’s Gift | In the Time of Dinosaurs | Elfangor’s Secret

Animorphs Chronicles: The Andalite Chronicles | The Hork-Bajir Chronicles

For today’s review, I’m going to be taking a look back at the third of K.A. Applegate’s Animorphs Chronicles. These books are designed to be read alongside the main Animorphs series as they help to expand on the universe by giving more background to the different alien races. Today’s novel – Visser – focuses on how Visser One first began the invasion of Earth and is designed to be read directly after The Proposal (book thirty-five of the main series).

Edriss 562 has never been in so much danger. Following a string of mistakes in the invasion of Earth, she has found herself stripped of her rank as Visser One and brought before the Council of Thirteen to answer for her crimes. The charges stacked against her carry a dozen different death charges but the worst thing is that Visser Three is her prosecutor. The Andalite Controller has hated Edriss for as long as she can remember and will stop at nothing to see that she is found guilty.

As the trial progresses, Edriss recounts how she and her friend Essam discovered Earth and took the very first Human Controllers. However, as she is subjected to an invasive memory probe, it quickly becomes apparent that her early years on Earth did not go smoothly. Visser One has many secrets, ones that not even her host is aware of. Secrets that are enough to shock even the most hardened of Yeerk generals.

It’s not long before Edriss realises that she has no hope of being found innocent. The only thing that she can do is make Visser Three seem worse. His incompetence in dealing with the Andalite Bandits has made him look a fool time and time again, but Edriss knows something that he doesn’t – the fact that they’re not Andalites at all. Slowly, she begins to form a plan to use this information to her advantage…

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Animorphs 33-37

Please note that this review may contain spoilers for earlier instalments of this series. You can read my reviews of these novels by clicking the links below:

Animorphs:  1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-19 | 20-22 | 23-27 | 28-32

Megamorphs: The Andalite’s Gift | In the Time of Dinosaurs | Elfangor’s Secret

Animorphs Chronicles: The Andalite Chronicles | The Hork-Bajir Chronicles

Welcome again to my retrospective of K.A. Applegate’s Animorphs. In case you haven’t seen any of my previous posts, this is my gradual look back over a popular-science fiction series that ran between 1996 and 2001. The series consisted of fifty-four main books and ten spin-offs, though for the purpose of this review I’m only going to be looking at volumes thirty-three to thirty-seven – The Illusion, The Prophecy, The Proposal, The Mutation and The Weakness. Be warned, there will be spoilers below the cut…

Due to Rachel’s struggle against herself, the Animorphs failed to stop the development of the Anti-Morphing Ray. Now that it’s ready to be tested, the team know that it could reveal that they’re really human and put all of their lives in danger. Their only hope is to fool Visser Three into believing that it’s broken and the only way to do this is to use Tobias. The hawk is his true form and so if the ray is turned upon him, nothing would happen. However, tricking the Yeerks requires for him to first become their prisoner.

Following this, the Animorphs are contacted by the last of the Arn. He wishes to breed a new strain of Hork-Bajir to free his plant for the Yeerks, but to do so he needs to find a cask of armaments that was once hidden by Aldrea. To locate this, he needs to transfer Aldrea’s consciousness into a willing host. However, there is no way of knowing if Aldrea will be prepared to give the person their body back.

Yet some of the Animorph’s biggest challenges occur close to home. Marco struggles to control his morphing power when put under stress by the possibility of his father remarrying, and Jake is forced to make difficult decisions when the team are taken captive by a race of aquatic humanoids. Yet the biggest challenge comes when Rachel is left in charge while Jake takes a vacation. Her reckless plan to show up Visser Three puts the lives of her friends in danger. Just how far will she go before she realises that she is in over her head?
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Megamorphs #3: Elfangor’s Secret

megamorphs-3

Please note that this review may contain spoilers for earlier instalments of this series. You can read my reviews of these novels by clicking the links below:

Animorphs:  1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-19 | 20-22 | 23-27 | 28-32

Megamorphs: The Andalite’s Gift | In the Time of Dinosaurs

Animorphs Chronicles: The Andalite Chronicles | The Hork-Bajir Chronicles

It’s been a while since I looked at one of the Megamorphs books, so here’s a little background. This is a spin-off of K.A. Applegate’s popular Animorphs series. There are four Megamorphs books and they’re characterised by being longer and containing more narrators than a typical Animorphs book. For today’s review, I’m going to be looking at the third of these – Elfangor’s Secret – which was first published in 1999. It should also be noted that this book is designed to be read after The Sickness (the 29th instalment of the main series).

When Elfangor tried to escape the war, he did so using the Time Matrix – the most powerful device in the universe. He knew that if the machine fell into the wrong hands it could be used to alter the history of the world, and so he hid it. Unfortunately, things don’t remain hidden forever. The device has fallen into the hands of Visser Four, and he intends to use it to ensure that Yeerks can easily dominate the Earth.

When the Drode is sent to request the Animorphs’ assistance, they know that something is wrong. The Crayak is their most powerful enemy – why ever would he need their help? Yet it quickly becomes clear that neither side wants to see the Yeerks with such power. The Crayak offers to give them the ability to pursue Visser Four across history, but he will only do so for a price. One of the Animorphs must die.

This is naturally not something that they want to agree to, yet they have no choice. They can’t value one of their lives over those of every human on the planet. Therefore, they begin to chase Visser Four in an attempt to stop him from changing history. However, they know that they must be careful. The Yeerk is not the only threat. Any wrong move that they make could also change the future for the worse…

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Animorphs 28-32

animorphs-28-32

Please note that this review may contain spoilers for earlier instalments of this series. You can read my reviews of these novels by clicking the links below:

Animorphs:  1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-19 | 20-22 | 23-27

Megamorphs: The Andalite’s Gift | In the Time of Dinosaurs

Animorphs Chronicles: The Andalite Chronicles | The Hork-Bajir Chronicles

Sorry it’s taken so long for me to post this – life is busy. Anyhow, let’s return to my retrospective look at K.A. Applegate’s Animorphs books. As with previous reviews, please note that there will be spoilers. In case you’ve never heard of it before, Animorphs was a science fiction series for young teens that ran from 1996 to 2001. It consisted of fifty-four main novels, as well as ten spin-off stories. For the purpose of this review, I’m going to be looking at books twenty-eight to thirty-two only – The Experiment, The Sickness, The Reunion, The Conspiracy and The Separation. That’s a lot of ground to cover, so let’s get started!

The Battle for Earth is drawing on and the Yeerks are being forced to grow craftier in their approach. When the Chee come to learn that the Yeerks have taken control of a research lab and meat processing plant, the Animorphs know that they have to infiltrate both to discover why. What they find is a complex plot to change the food supply in order to remove human free will. However, can they destroy the Yeerks’s research without winding up as hamburgers?

Following on from this, the Animorphs are forced to embark on a number of sensitive personal missions. Cassie’s trust is put to the test when she is contacted by a Yeerk who claims to be part of a peace movement. His ally, Aftran, has been captured and will inevitably reveal everything about the Animorphs once Visser Three tortures her. Yet, with all the other Animorphs sick, it’s up to Cassie alone to rescue her and, to do that, she must morph into her worst enemy…

Jake and Marco face crises of a different source when their families are targeted by the Yeerks. Jake must pull out all the stops to protect his unknowing father as Tom tries to either infest or destroy him, while Marco learns that his mother is still alive and is forced to make the impossible choice whether to risk his friends to save her or let her die. Meanwhile, Rachel is forced to face the danger within when she finds herself split in half. With the threat of the Yeerks developing an Anti-Morphing Ray, the team needs to be more focused than ever. But how can they stop it while Rachel is at war against herself?

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Animorphs 23-27

animorphs-23-27

Please note that this review may contain spoilers for earlier instalments of this series. You can read my reviews of these novels by clicking the links below:

Animorphs:  1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-19 | 20-22

Megamorphs: The Andalite’s Gift | In the Time of Dinosaurs

Animorphs Chronicles: The Andalite Chronicles | The Hork-Bajir Chronicles

Apologies in the delay in writing this review – it’s been a busy few weeks. This time, I’m going to be looking at books twenty-three to twenty-seven – The Pretender, The Suspicion, The Extreme, The Attack and The Exposed. In case this is the first of these reviews you’ve looked at, the Animorphs series was written by K.A. Applegate and ran from 1996 to 2001. It consists of fifty-four books and a further ten spin-off stories and specials. As always, this a retrospective rather than a true review, so there may be spoilers.

Tobias is left shocked when he is contacted out of the blue by his father’s lawyer. The man tells him that the person he thought was father was not really, and that his birth-father’s last will and testament is to be read to him on his next birthday. He also tells him that his long-lost cousin Aria has offered to become his legal guardian. There is just one problem. Tobias has never heard of Aria and so the Animorphs grow concerned that it may all be a Yeerk trap.

Following on from this, the Animorphs are forced to embark on a couple of high-risk missions when they’re faced by new alien threats. The minuscule Helmacrons don’t seem to be very dangerous at first, however when they shrink Cassie, Marco and Tobias down to their size, the Animorphs realise that the insane aliens are far more threatening on their own turf. Things grow more dangerous still when the Animorphs travel to the Arctic to destroy a new Yeerk facility. It soon becomes clear that the cold is not the only issue they face. The Yeerks have revived a long-extinct race – one perfectly adapted to fighting in sub-zero temperatures.

Yet their biggest challenge comes in the form of the Crayak – the Ellimist’s evil counterpart. Although not able to harm them directly, the Crayak is still able to send his deadly allies to destroy entire species. The Animorphs face their most dangerous foes as they protect the Iskoort home world from the monstrous Howlers, but the fight is brought much closer to home as the Drode – the Crayak’s twisted sidekick – sets his sights on the Chee…

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The Hork-Bajir Chronicles

the-hork-bajir-chronicles

Please note that this review may contain spoilers for earlier instalments of this series. You can read my reviews of these novels by clicking the links below:

Animorphs:  1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-19 | 20-22

Megamorphs: The Andalite’s Gift | In the Time of Dinosaurs

Animorphs Chronicles: The Andalite Chronicles

The Hork-Bajir Chronicles was written by K.A. Applegate and first published in 1998. It is the second book of the Animorphs Chronicles, a spin-off of the popular Animorphs series, and focuses on how the Yeerks took control of the Hork-Bajir race. Although this book is technically a prequel, it is intended to be read after book 22 of the main series (The Solution).

Aldrea’s family honour has been tarnished by the well-meaning actions of her father, Prince Seerow. It was Seerow who first reached out to the Yeerks, taking pity on their weakness and teaching them about the stars. Now, the Yeerks are the scourge of the universe, taking over race after race, and the Andalites are struggling to stop them. Unwilling to trust Seerow, the Andalites send him on a mission to study a remote jungle planet. The only known species who live there an unintelligent race of tree-dwelling herbivore known as the Hork-Bajir.

Dak Hamee is different. He is a Hork-Bajir seer – a creature born only once every generation who possesses greater-than-average intelligence. When the Andalite party arrives, he is quick to befriend Aldrea. Seeing that he is special, she teaches him science and mathematics. In return, Dak teaches her to appreciate his forest home and the spiritual peace of Hork-Bajir life.

Yet the peace will not last. The growing Yeerk empire has also discovered the Hork-Bajir homeworld and realises that the powerful Hork-Bajir will make excellent shock troops for their war. Lead by Esplin 9466, the Yeerks invade the planet and kill Aldrea’s family. With nothing left to lose, she encourages Dak to use his influence to train a band of Hork-Bajir into resistance fighters to strike back at the Yeerks. Yet their actions have horrible consequences. As Dak watches his friends become ruthless killing machines, he starts to wonder if resisting the Yeerks is worth the cost to his people…

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Animorphs 20-22

animorphs-20-22

Please note that this review may contain spoilers for earlier instalments of this series. You can read my reviews of these novels by clicking the links below:

Animorphs:  1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-19

Megamorphs: The Andalite’s Gift | In the Time of Dinosaurs

Animorphs Chronicles: The Andalite Chronicles

The Animorphs series was written by K.A. Applegate and ran from 1996 to 2001, consisting of fifty-four books and a further ten spin-off stories and specials. This week, I’m going to be focusing on books twenty to twenty-two – The Discovery, The Threat and The Solution – which are collectively known by fans as The David Trilogy. As always, this is a retrospective rather than a true review, so there may be spoilers.

The Animorphs believed that all trace of Elfangor was vaporised along with his ship. Imagine Marco’s surprise when he sees a boy at school showing off the Escafil Device – the blue box which gave them their morphing powers. The boy, named David, has no idea what the object is but realises that it’s valuable. He tells Marco that he’s put it up for sale online and already had interest. Marco knows that this is not a good thing. The only ones who would be interested in such an object have to be Controllers.

The Animorphs rush to David’s house to try and claim the Escafil Device for themselves and wind up inadvertently dragging David into their war. With his home destroyed and his parents taken by the Yeerks, they are left with two choices. Either they leave him to the mercy of Visser Three or they allow him to join them, sharing the morphing technology. Although Marco and Ax are wary, the Animorphs decide to take the risk and allow David to join their ranks.

Yet David has joined the team a bad time. A summit is taking place and the Animorphs learn that one of the world leaders attending is already a Controller. It will be the perfect chance for Visser Three to infest the rest. It’s a serious mission and the Animorphs soon realise that they may have made a mistake in trusting a stranger. David is unpredictable and cowardly, and would do anything to save his own skin. Even if it meant turning his new allies over to the Yeerks…

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Megamorphs #2: In the Time of Dinosaurs

in-the-time-of-dinosaurs

Please note that this review may contain spoilers for earlier instalments of this series. You can read my reviews of these novels by clicking the links below:

Animorphs:  1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15 | 16-19

Megamorphs: The Andalite’s Gift

Animorphs Chronicles: The Andalite Chronicles

In the Time of Dinosaurs was written by K.A. Applegate and first published in 1998. It is the second book of the Megamorphs series, a spin-off on the popular science-fiction series, Animorphs. Although the novel is a spin-off, it’s designed to be read after The Decision (the eighteenth book of the main series) so I wouldn’t advise picking up this one until you’ve at least reached that point.

It’s Marco that first hears about the nuclear submarine. The vessel ran into difficulties off the coast of his hometown, trapping its crew at the bottom of the sea. The Animorphs know that they can use their morphing powers to save the day, yet the rescue attempt goes wrong in a way that none of them expect. The submarine explodes with such force that it creates a Sario Rip, sending the Animorphs hurtling back through time.

They find themselves stranded in the late Cretaceous Period, a time when humans do not exist and dinosaurs rule the Earth. Now, at the bottom of the food chain, even their battle morphs are utterly useless. When a kronosaurus devours Rachel and Tobias, the rest of the team have no choice but to flee for their lives. If they are going to survive long enough to find a way home, they know that they will have to acquire some powerful new morphs.

As they explore the jungle, they come across something that none of them were expecting. Two alien races battle for control of the planet – the peaceful Mercora and the vicious Nesk. Caught in the war between them, the Animorphs must find a way to use their technology to recreate the Sario Rip. Yet their time could well be running out as a comet has appeared in the sky…

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Animorphs 16-19

animorphs-16-19

Please note that this review may contain spoilers for earlier instalments of this series. You can read my reviews of these novels by clicking the links below:

Animorphs:  1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15

Megamorphs: The Andalite’s Gift

Animorphs Chronicles: The Andalite Chronicles

This week, my Animorphs retrospective is going to be looking at The Warning, The Underground, The Decision and The Departure, which are books sixteen to nineteen of K.A. Applegate’s popular science-fiction series. If this is the first of my reviews that you’ve looked at, please note that these ones may contain spoilers. As the series has been out of print for a while now, it’s more a look back over my childhood obsession.

Over the course of their battles, the Animorphs have had many victories. They rescued a trapped Andalite from his crashed ship, protected the only two free Hork-Bajir in the universe, destroyed the Earth-based Kandrona and even prevented the Yeerks from creating an army of Shark Controllers. Yet they are at war and so sometimes things can go horribly, horribly wrong.

When Jake uncovers a chat room full of people who seem to know all about the invasion, he leads the Animorphs on a mission to find out more. However, when a lapse of judgement causes Rachel and Ax to be captured by their enemies, he begins to doubt his ability to lead. Things go from bad to worse as another attempt to sabotage the Yeerk Pool ends in a fierce battle, and a freak morphing accident leads to the Animorphs being sucked out into Z-Space.

All of these incidents prove to be far too much for Cassie. After a final gruesome battle against a Hork-Bajir Controller, she quits the team and vows to never morph again. However, even this does not end well. She finds herself stalked by a Yeerk who has taken the body of a little girl – a Yeerk who quickly comes to learn exactly what she is. Now, Cassie finds herself in a dilemma. Does she go against her moral code and kill the girl and protect her secret, or let her live and risk the lives of everyone that she loves?

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The Andalite Chronicles

the-andalite-chronicles

Please note that this review may contain spoilers for earlier instalments of this series. You can read my reviews of these novels by clicking the links below:

Animorphs:  1-5 | 6-10 | 11-15

Megamorphs: The Andalite’s Gift

The Andalite Chronicles was written by K.A. Applegate and first published in 1997. It is the first of four Animorphs Chronicles books that further expand the universe in which the main series is set. Although it does not form part of the main Animorphs chronology, The Andalite Chronicles is technically a prequel to the series and focuses on Elfangor’s youth as a cadet in the Andalite military.

Before Elfangor-Sirinial-Shamtul was a war-prince, he was a lowly aristh – a cadet – eager to see battle and prove himself as a great warrior. Assigned to the dome ship StarSword, he begins an unremarkable career with his friend and rival Arbron. His first taste of a real mission is a simple excursion to investigate a Skrit Na freighter but what he discovers there changes his life forever.

The Skrit Na have abducted two humans – Loren and Chapman – and Elfangor and Arbron are placed under the command of a disgraced war-prince called Alloran in order to transport them home. Yet their plans are derailed when they make a discovery. The Skrit Na have also scavenged a legendary Ellimist artefact known as the Time Matrix and are on their way to deliver it into the hands of the Yeerks.

Elfangor and his party pursue the Skrit Na to the Taxxon home world in the hope of retrieving the device, however in doing so they find themselves in a deadly struggle against the Yeerks. During the course of the fight, Elfangor makes a critical error and in doing so condemns Alloran to a fate worse than death – a horrible existence as the host of the Yeerk that will one day become Visser Three…

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