Lost in Babylon

Lost in Babylon

Book - 2013
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Journeying to the ancient city of Babylon when Bhegad tracks down Marco, the companions face a daunting choice involving a dire trap and a long-lost figure from Jack's past.
Publisher: New York, NY : Harper, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, ©2013.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780062070432
Characteristics: 373 pages :,illustrations ;,22 cm
Additional Contributors: Nordstrand, Torstein - Illustrator


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Jul 10, 2019

3/5 stars
PREMISE- (2.5/5) So I’ll admit, this series is a little young for me. Targeted to more of a middle-grade audience, I definitely would’ve enjoyed the Seven Wonders series more a few years ago. But once I start a series, I hate not finishing it, unless I really, really dislike it. Lost in Babylon is the second book in this sci-fi-fantasy blend, which revolves around the Seven Ancient Wonders of the world and a genetic mutation that provides a rare few with special abilities--but it also kills them before they turn 14. The first book covered the Colossus of Rhodes, and in this one, our main character Jack and his friends are searching for the Hanging Gardens of Babylon.
CHARACTERS- (3/5) Our main characters are Aly, Cass, Marco, and our narrator, Jack. All four are 13, and they each have a special skill or superhuman ability. I don’t adore any of these characters, but they have a fun group dynamic. The humor is a little young, but it’s there, and though they’re young, the characters aren’t lacking in depth. They come from different backgrounds, but they work well together. As for our side characters, I enjoyed Daria, and am hoping to see more of her in book three. There weren’t a ton of other important characters in this book except among our villains, the Massa. They’re an interesting group, but there hasn’t been a lot of individual development. Maybe that’ll happen too as the series progresses.
PLOT- (3.5/5) The plot was reasonably solid with lots and lots of action. This book is full of action, the pace rarely lets up. But what really makes the plot, are the twists. This book had a number of plot twists, and I’ve seen some mixed reactions. Personally, I saw most of them coming, but I still enjoyed them, and a lot of other readers were completely taken by surprise. Even though I suspected quite a few of the book’s twists and turns, they were still interesting, providing new sources of conflict and pushing forward other new plot points. Lost in Babylon was fast paced, packed with action and plot twists, and I thought the plot was pretty well done.
WORLD- (3/5) This is a little tricky because I’d like to make this rating based largely off the accuracy (or lack thereof) of Lerangis’ portrayal of ancient Babylon. Unfortunately, I know pretty much nothing about the actual historical ancient Babylon. So, as a fictional world, I’ll say it was fairly well constructed. The book is short enough that there’s no time to get into the nitty-gritty details of the society, but that’s not surprising in a book marketed to a slightly younger audience. But there wasn’t anything that struck me as blatantly wrong or illogical (except maybe Daria, but that was explained). I have no idea if this alternate Babylon is at all close to the real ancient Babylon, so I can’t judge one or the other there, but as a setting and fictional world, Babylon worked.
WRITING- (3/5) I don’t LOVE Lerangis’ writing, but I think that’s largely because I’m older than the intended audience. Sometimes, the way his characters talk or the immature humor bugs me. But that’s just because it’s not my style, not necessarily because it’s bad writing. Lerangis does do a good job of keeping his audience engaged by keeping the plot moving and constructing a believable, if not detailed world. His characters aren’t any of my favorites, but I would imagine are quite relatable to a 13-year-old reader.
OVERALL- (3/5) Lost in Babylon is a great sequel. I would’ve enjoyed it a lot more in elementary school, but I still enjoyed reading it as a high school student. It’s a quick read, fairly short and fast-paced. And I find the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World super fascinating, and that’s not something you get to see all too frequently in fiction. Though I saw the plot twists coming, they caused interesting ripple effects, and the fast-paced action drove the story straight to the conclusion. Although, this is not my type of read I’m sure many others would enjoy this book.

This is a pretty good book.

Jan 31, 2018

An interesting read. It's a shame about Marco, though. I could totally see what was going on.
Overall, very good.
Oh, my stars. I forgot Daria. She's such a nice character. I would really have liked to learn more about her.

Aug 02, 2015

SUMMARY: Marco has disappeared with the first of seven Loculus needed to possibly cure the four select teens who have the gene that will kill them by age fourteen. Jack, and the other two set out to find him. Following clues, the gang ends up in another ancient wonder, the lost city of Babylon, where another loculus is supposed to be stored. After many trials and tribulations as well as a run in with the enemy, the gang changes in a way none of them expects.

THE GOOD: This story was more riveting than the first. I was caught up in where was Marco and what was he up to. All along you know he is up to something, but not what actually happens. New characters enter the scene which adds interest. Again, there is plenty of predictability, but it was still exciting and never stopped me from wanting to know what happens next. There were tons of plot twists that kept me going. I listened to this on audio CD and the reader did a much better job than book one. Again, there was more about Babylon, time warps and numbers than I was interested in, but that is what will make many preteens and teens fall in love with this series.
THE NOT AS GOOD: I felt like this story was a little bit too long and occasionally took one too many turns (probably to set up the next book). I felt the author could have cut a little of the extra fat off the story and made it even better. Again there was quite a bit of violence and destruction as well as death and cruelty.

AGE RECOMMENDATION: GRADES 5-9 due to maturity and violence

Nhan Cao
Apr 27, 2015

just read the book it's pretty good.

elizabethfulop Dec 16, 2014


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Feb 11, 2015

Kaelan thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 7 and 13

elizabethfulop Dec 16, 2014

elizabethfulop thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 12 and 15


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