Battle of the Beasts

COLUMBUS, Chris & . illus. by Greg Call. 480p. (House of Secrets: Bk. 2). HarperCollins/Balzer & Bray. 2014. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780062192493; ebk. $9.99. ISBN 9780062192523. LC 2013956357.
Gr 4–8—The action-packed adventures of the Walker siblings ramp up in this sequel. This time, the family travels to Ancient Rome, battles Nazis during World War II, and treks through the Himalayas.
Book two of this family adventure finds the Walker siblings fighting ancient Roman gladiators and WWII-era Nazi cyborgs in an effort to get home by way of their evil nemesis's magical book. The narrative careens between action set pieces and expository dialogue, and its MacGuffin-laden twists eventually lose impact. However, visually imaginative world-building makes for many memorable, cinema-ready scenes.

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