The Children of the Lost by David Whitley

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The Children of the Lost by David Whitley

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Category: Confident Readers
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Madeline Wheatley
Reviewed by Madeline Wheatley
Summary: The Children of the Lost is the sequel to David Whitley's well received debut book The Midnight Charter. Fourteen year olds Mark and Lily have been banished from their home in the city of Agora, and journey through the wilds beyond the city searching for the mysterious Children of the Lost.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 416 Date: August 2010
Publisher: Puffin
ISBN: 978-0141330129

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This is definitely one of those sequels where you need to read the prequel first! The Children of the Lost picks up exactly where The Midnight Charter ends.

Mark and Lily have left Agora and they have no idea what to expect from the land beyond the city walls. They have been brought up within a rigid system based on barter in a city where everything can be traded: goods, services, people, even emotions are up for sale. They have also been taught that outside the city walls is a wilderness, with no civilised life. Do bear in mind here that their idea of civilisation is Agora…They are ill equipped to survive, and immediately make things worse by arguing with one another. Mark is furious with Lily for her part in their banishment and his actions lead to Lily being placed in great danger.

As the story progresses Mark and Lily discover that there is life outside the city walls. Whole communities exist that are run on very different lines to Agora. Co-operation rather than competition is the key to life here. But what initially seems idyllic proves to be worryingly flawed.

One of David Whitley's strengths is his ability to create distinctive characters that will stay with you long after you have finished reading. This book introduces many new ones, but anyone who enjoyed The Midnight Charter will be pleased to learn that their old favourites are not forgotten. The book moves between the land beyond Agora and the city itself, so characters such as Theo, Laud, Snutworth and Cherubina have central roles to play. Characters that had seemed set in their ways develop in new directions, and there are some great pithy summaries of others. Theo's comment on Crede: I'm a doctor, Crede, and you, sir, are a disease made me smile. The changing relationship between Mark and Lily is centre stage in the story, even when they spend time apart.

The land beyond Agora has a very different feel to it, but the book as a whole is exciting and a very strong sequel. The cliff hanger ending means that you will have to wait for the final part of the trilogy to unravel events. While readers may find that frustrating, this trilogy is shaping up to be a must read as a whole. Just try to imagine it as one long book, and grab the third part as soon as you can!

Thank you to the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

Further reading suggestion:

David Whitley's The Midnight Charter really needs to be read before The Children of the Lost

Fantasy trilogy fans should try Suzanne Collins The Hunger Games (all three parts now available!)

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Buy The Children of the Lost by David Whitley at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Children of the Lost by David Whitley at


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