Chase - Posted on 15 November 2009

Anthony Horowitz's new Alex Rider book, CROCODILE TEARS is due out any day in the US and is out in the UK. Additionally, his COLLISION is airing on PBS as we "speak". I await the new book and its CD with excitement. Each Alex Rider book is better than the last.

Nicely plotted, describing the locales of real places, and action that can really happen with believability and a fast pace, while keeping the characters that we care about (Alex mainly, but also Jack and Sabina) the stores just speak to me. SKELETON KEY starts out with a CIA that needs Alex's help to unravel a mystery in the area near Florida and Cuba dealing with a Russian madman who lost his 16 year old son in Afghanistan in 1989. Before that Alex is used by the MI6 to find out what a spy is doing at Wimbledon and Alex gets into so much trouble he has to leave the country as the Chinese Triad are after him and follow him on vacation and try to kill him  as he surfs a wild wave. Foisted upon two snobby CIA agents and posing at their son, Alex has to spy on them to find out more about his mission. He even has to rescue one of them from a drug dealer's boat which blows up. The action continues from there and involves death of major characters (this is no talk down to the kids book), a death trap under the water, near crushing of Alex's ...well everything, a shark, and the madman himself...who wants Alex to replace his son. Alot of action and tension ensues and involves half the world nearly getting blown to crap. Needless to say it involves a great many more locales including a Russian nuclear sub graveyard they decay...and a henchman who is literally held together by pins...totally engrossing. 

Every Alex Rider book gets progressively better than the last one and SKELETON KEY is no exception. Alex's long time nemesis, the Russian Yassen, who propelled him into this world by supposedly killing his uncle Ian, may have loved Alex's father since Ale'x;s father saved his life as they worked together as assassins! Much to Ale'x's displeasure. Alex's holiday is once more interupted when his friend, a girl named Sabina, has her holiday rented house blown to crap and her father severely injured...Alex is trapped in a knife fight, a bullfight arena, and it all leads to a man that everyone thinks is  a saint...and is a popular rock star. Alex must face his deadly game GAMESLAYER and seem to die twice...and this leads to death in France and a strange death by thousands of coins in Amsterdam as well as a super bike being chased by cars, motorcyles and men on foot. Alex must also manage a real game board in a huge factory where an armoured snake and acid are just two of the dangers. But it is the plane ride on AirForce One that might mean Sabina's and Alex's death. Totally addicting, thoroughly exciting and well plotted.  

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