STORM: The Ghost Machine
E. L. Young
Dial Books (2008)
Reviewed by Ben Weldon (age 10) for Reader Views (9/08)
“STORM: The Ghost Machine” by E. L. Young is a spellbinding novel about three brainiac teenagers who try to stop an evil psychopath from killing many of the world’s secret service leaders. Will, Andrew, and Gaia are the STORM (Science and Technology to Over-Rule Misery) team. Together they use their many talents to save the world. When their contact in Venice reports some disturbing news and then vanishes, the STORM team senses trouble and sets out for Venice. They discover strange thefts with a “ghost” as the culprit, and these thefts are soon dubbed the work of Il Fantastma (The Ghost). As they travel to the Isola delle Fantasme (Isle of the Masks) they find a dangerous cult with the mysterious Master at its head. Will they be discovered before they uncover the mystery that surrounds the cult? Armed with brilliant brains and high-tech inventions, they are out to battle the evil psychopath who is terrorizing Venice. Who will triumph, good or evil?
STORM members Andrew, Gaia, and Will are not ordinary kids. Computer geek and self-made multi-millionaire, Andrew provides plentiful funding for STORM. Gaia is fluent in many languages and has photographic memory. Will is an inventor and is often, to his annoyance, called The Maker by Andrew. Together they are quite a team. Once, when Will, Andrew, and Gaia were fleeing from the island, they were pursued by two evil, gun-toting cult members on hydrofoils. Luckily, they had Blind Spot, a laser beam that causes temporary blindness, and Gaia used it to blind the pursuers who toppled into the lagoon, so the three of them could make their getaway.
Author E. L. Young is a science writer, and she based all the gadgets in this book on genuine research and inventions. At the end of the book there is an author’s note which provides references for the inventions and more detailed information about some of the science in the book. She makes very clear the few fictional scientific aspects of the book. There are even several pages of schematic drawings of the gadgets.
I would recommend this book to people who like science fiction and action. “STORM: The Ghost Machine” is the action-packed sequel to “STORM: The Infinity Code.” This was a terrific book, and I was thrilled to find out that this is the second in a series of four books that have already been released in the UK. With every chapter, the suspense grew, and it kept me on the edge of my seat for the entire book. There is no bad language that parents will object to. I hope that everyone who reads this book likes it as much as I did.