Airborn Hardcover – 2004
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Now in paperback--a swashbuckling new fantasy by the bestselling author of the Silverwing trilogy. In the early 20th century, a young orphan serves as a cabin boy aboard an airship and is witness to life-and-death battles in the sea and above land.
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Top Customer Reviews
This book isn't your typical Treasure Island, however. The Aurora is an airship (think the Good Year Blimp with a full crew and rich passengers) that sails the skies 800 feet above the ocean surface. The airplane has never been invented, and the airships are powered by a light-weight gas called hydrium (a mango-scented gas than all other molecules and pushes any other air out of the space it is in) and propellers to guide the ships through the air.
In this tale, the Aurora, and more specifically Matt Cruse, rescues a stranded balloonist over the Pacificus. One year later, the balloonist's granddaughter, Kate, appears as a passenger on the ship, intent on finding a mysterious creature her grandfather saw on his final voyage. Kate shares her grandfather's story with Matt, who aids her in her quest. Together they face many dangers, including the wrath of Kate's overbearing chaperone, Miss Simpkins, who does not feel that proper ladies should associate with the crew of an airship.
This book is very well written. Kenneth Oppel describes the events, people and places fully, without letting potentially gruesome incidents get to graphic. All of the plot lines intertwine gracefully throughout the narrative until they connect in the book's climax. The characters are interesting and multi-dimensional.Read more ›
Matt Cruse is on the crow's nest, as the "ship's eyes," when he catches a glimpse of a sinking airship. The dying balloonist dies shortly afterward -- but not before telling Matt about glorious winged creatures. Matt dismisses these as hallucinations -- but one year later, a routine cruise on the airship Aurora becomes something more when the dead man's granddaughter Kate arrives. Wealthy but treated like a nuisance, Kate is determined to find whatever her grandfather saw.
She shows Matt her grandfather's writings about these winged creatures, and Matt is slowly convinced that the old man wasn't just hallucinating. But their investigations are interrupted by a sudden pirate attack -- which leaves the Aurora sinking from a rip in its envelope. Soon the airship and her crew and passengers are stranded on a deserted island, which may hold the secret to Kate's winged beasts... but it also holds the pirates.
Oppel really hits his stride in this book, mixing science with science fiction and wrapping it in a fantasy tortilla. While his bat books were quite good, "Airborn" has the rare quality of slipping readers into his imagined universe. It's one of those stories that can be easily imagined as a reality, even if we do have planes and not airships. He even describes how creatures like the cloud cats could fly, were they real.Read more ›
As a fan of Kenneth Oppel's SILVERWING trilogy, I was ecstatic to hear about his newest addition to the literary world, AIRBORN. Let me tell you, I was not disappointed in even the slightest way. AIRBORN is an exciting thrill-ride of an adventure, that takes the reader through space, and clouds, where we get to meet up with pirates, voyagers, and all types of other humans and creatures who tour the sky day and night. Matt was an exciting character, who will be loved by readers, as he is very optimistic, and intelligent, and his imagination is much like a childs, what with his constant fantasies about sailing through the sky, and being the gas that powers the airship. Fans of Oppel's SILVERWING trilogy will find it hard to put down AIRBORN.
Most recent customer reviews
The audiobook of Airborn is done using a full cast with ambiance sounds. What a joy to listen to.
I like listening to audiobooks in general but the difference between... Read more
I purchased this because I'd passed it several times in bookstores and had always been curious about it. Read morePublished on Dec 27 2012 by Jimmy
It was weird going back and reading the first book in this trilogy after reading the third novel, but it was well worth it. Read morePublished on Jan. 25 2011 by Steven R. McEvoy
I love this book. This book is adventurous and very exciting. There's also a little romance in the book, so be prepared. Read more
This is an awesome book. The first few pages are pretty boring and confusing but when you get into the middle of the book, the book gets extremely exciting. Read more