Book Review: Conspiracy 365 – March (Gabrielle Lord)

Here we go – it’s now March and Callum Ormond is still on the run. He’s successfully escaped the horrendous fate awaiting him at the end of February but has managed to get himself into yet another scrape. This book is possibly the most relentless one yet, with far-fetched escape after far-fetched escape.

What’s amusing (and also raising the tension) is that Callum is only ever a step ahead of both the cops and the crims – so he really is on the run from absolutely everyone.

My favourite set piece in this one is a chapter involving a snake venom laboratory.

***SPOILER WARNING***

It’s not often you get a main character smash open a glass cage of death adders, get bitten, and then have to race against time to get to the antivenom room. I was pretty impressed. What with sharks in January and lions in February, the natural world has really got it in for this kid.

***SPOILERS OVER***

The book climaxes with Callum attempting to steal the mysterious Ormond Riddle, escaping by the skin of his teeth, and then doing his best to escape town. I think definitely a change of location would be good for all of us. (Though my prediction is that this series will end up in Ireland, the place where Callum’s dad went in the previous year, and came home sick.) But we shall see…

4 out of 5.

Book Review: Conspiracy 365 – February (Gabrielle Lord)

And it’s only getting better as Conspiracy 365 continues into February. Our 15-year-old hero, Callum Ormond, managed to get himself out of the oily scrape he found himself in at the end of January, but things only get more confusing. There’s now a girl thrown into the mix – but can he trust her? Mysterious doppelgangers, an illuminating stained glass window, more chases, and – get this – he finds himself at the zoo in the lion’s cage.

It’s starting to get a bit exhausting, all this running around (in January, Callum was hiding out in a house, but now he’s taken to storm water drains, which – believe me – is as dangerous as it sounds). But Gabrielle Lord is slowly teasing out the mystery of what happened to Callum’s father, and what the mysterious drawings mean. It’s this mystery that drives Callum (and us, the readers) to keep on reading.

And, of course, it all comes to a head in another cliff-hanger climax involving a train and a tunnel. Need I say more? Just as much fun as the first one, but at this pace, we could lose steam as the story progresses. We’ll see. I’m certainly wondering what Callum is going to do once the winter kicks in…

4 out of 5.