The Foundry’s Edge (First Book of Ore) by Cam Baity and Benny Zelcowicz – Review

By on April 24, 2014

foundry

Publisher’s Description:

Two kids on a rescue mission. A mysterious realm of living metal. One secret that will change the world.

For Phoebe Plumm, life in affluent Meridian revolves around trading pranks with irksome servant Micah Tanner and waiting for her world-renowned father, Dr. Jules Plumm, to return home. Chief Surveyor for The Foundry, a global corporation with an absolute monopoly on technology, Phoebe’s father is often absent for months at a time. But when a sudden and unexpected reunion leads to father and daughter being abducted, Phoebe and would-be rescuer Micah find themselves stranded in a stunning yet volatile world of living metal, one that has been ruthlessly plundered by The Foundry for centuries and is the secret source of every comfort and innovation the two refugees have ever known.

What I expected: I expected a middle grade adventure full of interesting things, some adventure and a smidgen of painful learning for the two heroes.

What I got: I got what I expected, but I did not enjoy what I got as much as I expected to.

What I liked: I liked the pure imagination needed to invent a world of living metal.  I liked that Phoebe was forced to accept a few hard truths.

What I did not: I did not like the fact that Phoebe and Micah were horrible people.  She was spoiled and bratty and mean, and he was just plain bratty and mean. But, I can hear you splutter, they learn, and isn’t that the lesson?  Well, sure. But this learning lesson felt false. They played evil, hurtful, and destructive pranks on each other for no particular reason, and there is no way I could believe that they were truly good-hearted people underneath all of that or that the lessons learned from their adventure would be valid. This flawed the book for me from the start. I generally have difficulties with main characters whom I do not like.

Cover Talk:  I liked the cover a lot, which is one of the reasons I picked the book up in the first place.  It is a bit busy, but it is attractive and has the feel of the story.

Recommendation: Middle grade readers will probably enjoy this – I am more than likely prejudiced against people who are not nice, and that colors my view of the entire story.  Steampunk fans will probably also enjoy it for the pure inventiveness of it.

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