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Reviewed by Susie Coe
Opening sentence
A thrilling adventure to enjoy, reviewed by Susie Coe
December 13, 2022

Eirlys Hunter’s The Uprising: the Mapmakers in Cruxia started off a little bit slow, but as I got into it I found it very enjoyable and couldn't put it down. The story starts with our heroes, Sal, Joe, Francie, Humphrey and their mother in a city called Porto Pearls looking for their father, a famous explorer that went missing on an expedition. They take a dirigible (airship) to Cruxia, where the story then unfolds.

A mass of events follow, including a near run-in with some old enemies from a previous adventure, The Mapmaker's Race, the first book in the series, which is best read before this installment, and meeting some of the locals.

The diversity of the characters made it a very interesting read and I really loved how Sal is great at maths and Joe likes to think he's normal, but he's a living compass and can always tell north even when blindfolded. His twin, Francie, always seems younger to me, because she is mute. She can draw their maps perfectly and she has a special ability, which helps them out on a number of occasions throughout the book. On the other hand, Humphrey is really funny and he is very good at spotting things, which makes the plot even more enjoyable.

Out of all the characters I think that Joe is my favourite, but I also like Hessa, one of the locals. I was intrigued the way the characters had to work together to achieve their goals and help the Cruxians save their ancient burial grounds from the greedy Grania Trading Company and their evil leader, Mundle.

Was there anything I disliked about the story? Well, I felt sad about what happened to the althemeter as I liked it, and I also would have loved to read more from Francie's point of view because we only get to see her side of things when she is flying. I wondered what it would've been like in her head when she was drawing or being with the others, as she can't voice her feelings and thoughts to others throughout the book.

Aside from those few points it is an awesome read and I'm so glad Eirlys Hunter took the time to write it. This story had quite a few exciting plot twists and that make for a very thrilling read. The ending was particularly fitting for this story and if there are any more installments then I look forward to reading them too!

- Susie is 12 and lives in the Wellington region.
Author & Illustrator: Eirlys Hunter
Publisher: Gecko Press