When Gillian’s dad’s reputation has been discredited after all of his research is lost in a flood, she is determined to help her dad gain not only his reputation, but gain the truth of a scientist from the Cold-War era.
This is a light mystery of a group of kids discovering a diary of a scientist from the Cold War era who invented a battery that never ran out of power. Only he is missing; his diary is missing; and Gillian’s and Eric’s dad (the author of Dr. Aloysius Underberg’s biography) is a discredited laughingstock in the academic community.
This is a juvenile book, not dystopian, and not my normal read, but it had me hooked fairly soon. For young readers who want mystery and need to still be in juvenile books, this is great.
The group of friends are nice and different types of kids. As Gillian and Eric add more people to their team of investigators, we see kids from different backgrounds, kids with different hobbies, and kids from different social circles come together using their own strengths to help solve the riddle. There is supportive sibling love between the two after their mom couldn’t handle the conspiracy theory loving dad; there are teens who fit stereotypes and those that don’t; but the crew of kids are all working for one goal: To find the truth about Underberg’s inventions and the secret from his diary.
There’s adventure as the kids are chased into the newly discovered underground city. Levels beneath the ground, our adventurers learn more of Underberg’s inventions, why he created Omega City, and have to survive explosions and rising water levels. They are brave as well as intelligent, quick thinking pre-teens and teenagers. In the end, they uncover some secrets, are safe, and remain friends even after they return to ground level and their daily lives. (This felt very similar to the plot of the Goonies, only with some cool history about the Cold War and facts about space thrown in.)
There is an untitled sequel in the works.