Monday, September 28, 2020

HATCH by Kenneth Oppel


Okay, I'm not going to lie: I've been waiting to read the second book in the BLOOM trilogy since I read the last one back in the spring.


First the rain brought seeds. Seeds that grew into alien plants that burrowed and strangled and fed.

Seth, Anaya, and Petra are strangely immune to the plants’ toxins and found a way to combat them. But just as they have their first success, the rain begins again. This rain brings eggs. That hatch into insects. Not small insects. Bird-sized mosquitos that carry disease. Borer worms that can eat through the foundation of a house. Boat-sized water striders that carry away their prey.

But our heroes aren’t able to help this time–they’ve been locked away in a government lab with other kids who are also immune. What is their secret? Could they be…part alien themselves? Whose side are they on?


Just like with BLOOM, Oppel sucked me in from the first page. If BLOOM was all about the sudden and horrible infestation of Earth by disgusting plants, HATCH is all about creepy-crawlies.

Honestly? I hate creepy-crawlies. And nobody does creepy-crawly better than Oppel. Read THE NEST if you want to know what I mean. I literally shivered my way through that book. And readers: Ken Oppel did it to me again. 

Sometimes I had to put the book down because I was so jittery. And of course I picked it back up.

And kept thinking how much kids are going to LOVE being so creeped out!

While the first book focuses on Seth, Anaya, and Petra, book two introduces us to new characters, all of whom are fully drawn and are various degrees of likability. 

Our protagonists have no idea who to trust, including each other.

Oppel makes us care about his characters, which makes the stakes that much higher.

We also learn more about the aliens in HATCH. Or do we? Oppel leaves us guessing.

HATCH ratchets up the tension and thrills, and Oppel does an amazing job of taking us deeper into the labyrinth of this world, where we can never be certain that things are what they seem to be.

Of course, he leaves us hanging.

It is a long way until spring 2021.

And I can't wait!

This is a book that will be devoured by kids everywhere, though I would recommend it for kids 10+. 

And you MUST read BLOOM before you read this one.

But don't worry: you will devour them, much like some of Oppel's creepy crawlies devour their prey.


Verdict: 5 stars!

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