Release Date: first published 2004, paperback out 2005
Books in Series: Airborn, Skybreaker, Starclimber
About the Book: Matt Cruse is a cabin boy on a huge passenger airship (think the Titanic in the sky). One night while he is on duty, his ship intercepts a small one person airship carrying an old man. The old man's ship has been badly crashed and beaten and as the man is dying, he tells Matt of beautiful creatures who were flying in the sky. Everyone thinks the old man is crazy and Matt isn't sure what to think. A year later when the man's granddaughter shows up claiming she has her grandfather's journal and she wants to find the same beautiful creatures, Matt finds himself on a action packed adventure. Are the creatures real? And can Matt and Kate find them?
GreenBeanTeenQueen Says: Airborn is such a great read! (Or in my case listen, since I listened to the audiobook). But no matter how many times I booktalk it, tell my teens about it, and try to really sell it to readers, it still remains a hard book to convince them to take. I'm not sure if that's because the old cover which we have in the library and maybe the paperback cover is helping to remedy that.
I often describe this book as Treasure Island meets Around the World in 80 Days which sometimes will get a reader's attention. With the rise of steampunk, I could see readers looking for more in the genre and picking this one up.
But if you can find a way to get this into reader's hands and get them to read it, they'll love it! Once I've convinced a reader to pick this one up, they come back raving about it. There's action, adventure, mystery, romance, pirates and strange creatures in the sky. I loved the audiobook because it was done by Full Cast Audio so each character had a different voice and it really made the book feel like a movie. Airborn would make a great classroom or family read aloud because there is something for everyone in the book. It gives such a great nod to the old classic adventures that readers of all ages should enjoy it. There are two sequels so Matt and Kate's adentures do continue, but Airborn wraps things up nicely that it can be read on it's own.
Airborn is a perfect all ages adventure story that will excite readers and leave them wanting more.
Book Pairings: Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne, Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson, Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld, Larklight by Philip Reeve