“… is there — as a man of science I hesitate to say this — a spirit in us that can be tapped into?”
“Of course. It is our will to live. What it can be used for, I imagine, is boundless.”
For book 13 of my #50bookpledge, I decided to read The Hunchback Assignments by Arthur Slade. I can’t exactly remember how this book got into my reading list. All I know is that I was scouring the internet for books to read and I saw this book and got intrigued by the synopsis of the book. Anyway, this is book one of a four book series, entitled The Hunchback Assignments. The book gives off a “steampunk”-y vibe which is really cool (since it’s the first book I’ve read which has this style).
Here’s the synopsis of the book from GoodReads.com:
The mysterious Mr. Socrates rescues Modo, a child in a traveling freak show. Modo is a hunchback with an amazing ability to transform his appearance, and Mr. Socrates raises him in isolation as an agent for the Permanent Association, a spy agency behind Brittania’s efforts to rule the empire. At 14, Modo is left on the streets of London to fend for himself. When he encounters Octavia Milkweed, another Association agent, the two uncover a plot by the Clockword Guild behind the murders of important men. Furthermore, a mad scientist is turning orphan children into automatons to further the goals of the Guild. Modo and Octavia journey deep into the tunnels under London and discover a terrifying plot against the British government. It’s up to them to save their country.
“It’s not about fairness, Modo. There are somethings that cannot be revealed. It’s that simple.”
– Mr. Socrates
I enjoyed the book even though it took me quite a while to finish it. I really liked Modo’s character. His character is endearing; he’s forced to hide a mask because people would not understand who he really is. For me, his ability to “shapeshift” is probably a necessary evolution. After all, it’s difficult for people to accept those they can’t understand. His ability allows him to change his appearance so that he can show people what they want to see. But I know it must be difficult for Modo to allwas be hiding behind a mask. How can you be sure people will love the you that you hide behind the mask? It’s devastating to show yourself and be rejected because people didn’t care for who you are.
On a random note, Mr. Socrates kind of reminded me of Mycroft Holmes from the BBC adaptation of the Sherlock Holmes story. 😛
There’s something about the book though which is making me hesitate to read the next book in the series. I can’t really put my finger on it but even though I enjoyed the book, I’m not sure I want to read the next one. Oh well. There’s always a next time. I can decide to read it some other time. 🙂
No matter the situation, be calm.
Anyways, that’s it for now. I’m off to sleep. Good night dear readers. (^^)/~~