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Ark Angel by Anthony Horowitz


2015, first published 2005  

This is the sixth of the Alex Rider books. It starts off with Alex almost recovered form a bullet wound at the end of the last adventure. The bullet only just missed his heart.  He befriends the boy in the next room.  Paul is the son of a very wealthy business man, Nikolei Drevin.  An attempt is made at kidnapping Paul but Alex takes his place.

All is not what it seems. The aggressive activist group Force Three is a set up: Drevin has commissioned it to make him look innocent when he blows up the space hotel he has been working on with the British government.  The project is bleeding money and Drevin wants to get rid of it. He has arranged for it to fall out of the sky and act like a nuclear bomb that will wipe out Washington.  Alex’ a guardian, Jack Starbright, is currently staying in Washington with her parents.  

Drevin also makes several attempts to toughen up his son. The kidnapping is his idea and had it not gone wrong with Alex taking Paul’s place, Paul would have lost a finger.  

Alex, who has still not quite recovered from the operation to remove the bullet, is now sent by the CIA to move the bomb to another part of the space hotel, so that it explodes harmlessly in space.

Anthony Horowitz supplies us with graphic details of what travelling in space would feel like.     

The book is 346 pages long, with blocked text and an adult but simple font. The chapters are quite long.


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2017, fluent reader, Key Stage 2, ages 9-11, upper primary
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There is perhaps an assumption that the reader will be familiar with the original stories. Certainly they are amusing and not just for the young reader.Adults can enjoy them too. 
This is quite a …