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Empire of Ruins: The Hunchback Assignments 3 Hardcover – September 13, 2011

4.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Slade’s steampunk espionage series, the Hunchback Assignments, continues. In this episode the Permanent Society travels to Australia in search of an ancient Egyptian artifact that has driven earlier seekers mad. As Modo continues his daring stunts while also maintaining his shape-shifting, he longs for Octavia to think more romantically of him than he believes his true and deformed face could ever permit. Slade does a fine job of applying an ethical gloss on Victorian Britain’s stripping of native artifacts without derailing the pace or mood of the story. The cliffhanger ending is a satisfying promise of more adventures to come. Grades 7-10. --Francisca Goldsmith

About the Author

ARTHUR SLADE has published several novels for young readers, including The Hunchback Assignments; Dark Deeps: The Hunchback Assignments 2; Jolted: Newton Starker's Rules for Survival; Megiddo's Shadow; Tribes; and Dust, which won the Governor General's Award for Children's Literature. He lives in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, with his wife, Brenda Baker, and their daughter. Visit him on the Web at ArthurSlade.com.

Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 750L (What's this?)
  • Series: The Hunchback Assignments (Book 3)
  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Wendy Lamb Books (September 13, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385737866
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385737869
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,830,446 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Arthur Slade was raised in the Cypress Hills of southwest Saskatchewan (on a ranch) and began writing at an early age. He received an English Honours degree from the University of Saskatchewan, spent several years writing advertising and now writes fiction full time. He is the author of seventeen novels, including the "Northern Frights" series of books, "Dust" (which won the Governor General's award), "Tribes," "Monsterology" and "The Hunchback Assignments" series. He also penned the graphic novel "Modo: Ember's End." He currently lives in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Reason for Reading: Next in the series; plus I read every new book by the author.

Modo and 'Tavia are back with a bang in a brand new adventure that is fresh and exciting. The Clockwork Guild are back as is the villain with Miss Hakkandottir at the command but she has some new tricks up her metal hand's sleeve, namely a falconer and some vicious clockwork falcons added to the poisonous menagerie who are out to get Modo. On an exploration trip to Australia to find perhaps a valuable weapon called the God's Face, the Association enters the jungles to discover what can only be described as an Egyptian temple. All the crew are here, Modo and Octavia, back to work together again, along with Tharpa, Mr. Socrates joins the team in the field for a change as well! Another nice surprise is to see Mrs. Finchley back on the scene, not about to enter any jungles, but back in civilization where she may be needed. A fast-paced rip-roaring tale that certainly leaves the sameness some series often get bogged down in by transporting our heroes (and villains) to new surroundings and obstacles to face in primitive early 20th century Australia. My favourite of the series so far! There is a teeny-weeny bit of romance in the air but there is so much to be overcome by the participants themselves, individually, that the romantic theme is only barely a whisper in the background, which suits me fine. Great characters, great adventure, cool inventions, and book 4 seems to be headed for Canada so another out of the ordinary adventure to look forward to in the next book!
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Format: Hardcover
Arthur Slade has another smash hit on his hands. In this amazing novel we are reunited with Modo, Octavia, and Mr. Socrates, and Tharpa joins the expedition this time around. And of course, it features our favorite mechanical hand villain, Miss Hakkandottir. This time the steampunk adventure takes us to the colonies once again as we immerse ourselves in the Victorian World with a technological twist.

Now the adventure heads to the Australian Outback and a rumored Egyptian pyramid in the middle of the Jungle. Filled with a mix of Victorian sense and sensibility, and the steampunk cutting-edge technology, the story takes us into an alternate past. This story is wonderfully written with greater character development and depth than the earlier two books. Slade is a master storyteller and as he draws us into this world and the complex relationship between two spies serving their country, Modo and Octavia both explore new feelings and expectations. This adventure is to see and find a legendary God Face, an ancient relic supposed to turn an enemy arm upon itself. But with poisonous mechanical falcons, an assassin, and Modo and company always seeming one step behind, can they pull it together and achieve another victory for England and the Crown?

This book was another amazing read by an incredible Canadian author. Arthur Slade has been in my top ten reads almost every quarter and every year for a few years running. This book was no exception. I had heard a rumour that this book 3 was to be the last, but now Arthur Slade has confirmed at least a 4th book, breaking with his tradition of only doing trilogys for series, such as Northern Fights and his Canadian Chills. I already anticipate the next, and if you have not read them, read the Hunchback Assignments.

They are exceptional works of fiction!
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Format: Hardcover
This is the third book in a series about Modo, a deformed teenage spy with the ability to shapeshift. This book picks up a few months after the last one ended. Modo was given a bit too much time to recuperate from his last mission and is starting to get antsy, so he is relieved when Mr. Socrates finally announces that he will be going on another mission. This time, Mr. Socrates is going too, along with Modo's fellow agent Octavia, Modo's fighting teacher Tharpa, and Modo's mother figure Mrs. Finchley. I was glad to see Mrs. Finchley again as I was beginning to think she was out of the picture for good.

The group travels to Australia in search of an Egyptian pyramid of all things. They hope to find a potentially dangerous artifact known as the God Face. The villainous Clockwork Guild is also looking for the God Face and they have some scary new "weapons" this time around.

I enjoyed this book just as much as the first two. I was glad that this one was slower paced and had a bit more of the character development that I was looking for, and I think everything was handled well and realistically. However, I didn't care much for any of the minor characters this time, unlike in the second book. I also found the mission a bit boring. The end really picked up though, and I can't wait for the next book to come out in September. I'm just sad that it's going to be the last one. I can't recommend this series enough!
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Empire of Ruins: The Hunchback Assignments 3
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