Reviews for Point Blank : An Alex Rider Adventure


Booklist Monthly Selections - #1 April 2002
Gr. 6-10. There are times when a grade-B adventure is just the ticket for a bored teenager--especially if it offers plenty of slam-bang action, spying, and high-tech gadgets. Point Blank, the second in the Alex Rider Adventure series, is a nonstop thriller of just that sort, which features a 14-year-old orphan who is a reluctant spy for the British government. Trained by his uncle, a topnotch spy who died with his boots on, Alex is a bright, tough, daredevil athlete. No wonder M16 wants him to investigate a mysterious Swiss school dedicated to "reforming" delinquent sons of wealthy industrialists and important officials. Using a false identity, Alex enters the school and soon finds himself surrounded by curiously docile students, teachers who support the fascism, and a renegade doctor interested in cloning. With secret rooms, sullen sentries, mysterious disappearances, and wild rides galore, this is a great choice for reluctant readers. ((Reviewed April 1, 2002)) Copyright 2002 Booklist Reviews

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Horn Book Guide Reviews 2002 Fall
Fourteen-year-old Alex Rider, the youngest agent working for Great BritainÆs intelligence organization, is called into action again. This time heÆs sent to a boarding school in the French Alps where hard-to-handle boys are mysteriously transformed into Stepford-like students. The plot is preposterous, but daring escapes, larger than life villains, and a surprise ending make this sequel to [cf2]Stormbreaker[cf1] a riveting read. Copyright 2002 Horn Book Guide Reviews

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Kirkus Reviews 2002 February #2
Fasten your seat belts for the second installment in Anthony Horowitz's spy-thriller series starring 14-year-old British schoolboy and ace agent from MI6, Alex Rider. James Bond has nothing on this crafty kid, and it's lucky Alex is on the job. It seems that mad scientists still infest the planet and still want to rule the world. When readers first met Alex in Stormbreaker (2001), MI6 had sent him to spy school. This time they send him to an exclusive school for the recalcitrant sons of the super-rich. Disguised as the son of a British supermarket magnate, Alex learns that something extraordinarily odd is going on at the school. Yes indeed, the school's owner, the creepy South African apartheid supporter Dr. Grief, intends to take over the world by controlling his wealthy students. But who are his students? Is Dr. Grief using brainwashing, fear, or something more sinister on the boys? Can Alex escape from the fortress-like school before that sinister something happens to him? Horowitz devises a string of miraculous circumstances that keeps Alex alive and spying throughout. Spy thrillers appear too seldom in YA literature. With plenty of cliffhanger action, the Alex Rider adventures might help get young readers hooked. The unabashed fantasy imitates the James Bond movies more closely than the books, but it's all plenty of fun. (Fiction. 11-14) Copyright Kirkus 2002 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved

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Publishers Weekly Reviews 2002 May #2
Powerful, privileged and screwed up, 16 boys in a boarding school suddenly turn into model students. It's up to 14-year-old Alex Rider to find out why and to face the maniacal man who has engineered it all in a bid to take over the world in Point Blank: An Alexander Rider Adventure by Anthony Horowitz, the follow-up to last year's Stormbreaker. (Apr.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

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School Library Journal Reviews 2002 March
Gr 5-10-After two influential businessmen die in separate freak accidents, MI6, England's spy network, once again calls upon 14-year-old Alex Rider to infiltrate Point Blanc, a private school in the French Alps for out-of-control, wealthy teens. Armed only with his wits and some 007-type devices, he stumbles upon an evil mad scientist's plot to take over the world using clones as replacements for prominent sons. Spy gadgets, chase scenes, mysteries, and a cliff-hanger ending will keep even reluctant readers interested in the second novel in this series. Familiarity with the first novel is not necessary as the plot fills in past information when needed, but many students will want to go back and read Stormbreaker (Philomel, 2001) to see how Alex first became involved with MI6.-Kim Carlson, Monticello High School, IA Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

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VOYA Reviews 2002 February
In the second installment of Alex Rider's adventures, which follows Stormbreaker (Philomel, 2001/VOYA August 2001), this fourteen-year-old MI6 agent is sent undercover to Point Blanc, an elite finishing school high in the mountains of France, to find out why the fathers of two students there-one an American, one a Russian-were assassinated recently. Inventive gadgetry, including a CD player that turns into a saw when Beethoven is played, and suspenseful action, such as trains in tunnels and an escape down the slopes on an ironing board, drive the plot here and lead the reader through the paces of what feels like a James Bond movie. The stock characters make their appearances-the cold-hearted bombshell or the evil and ugly female assistant to the villain, with her Afrikaans accent and a title in weightlifting-sometimes feeling tacked on, as does the action sequence at the very beginning that serves as an opening-creditslike introduction to the hero but has nothing to do with the plot. The plot itself unfolds rather obviously around an evil mastermind with a cloning project. Readers looking for character development or challenging mystery will be frustrated. The cliffhanger ending appropriately closes this episode in a series that will satisfy teens looking for a fast pace, and the level of intrigue lets the reader stay a step ahead of the hero.-Nina Lindsay. This fast-paced book is for the young James Bond and spy-adventure fan. The book is short enough for the reluctant reader and cuts to the chase to hold attention. Other readers might quickly tire of the larger-than-life action scenes and clich s such as the stereotypical mad-scientist villain. Readers who enjoyed the first book will enjoy Point Blank.-Anna Yu, aka Anna Banana, Teen Reviewer. 3Q 4P M J Copyright 2002 Voya Reviews

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