The Dark Deeps: The Hunchback Assignments 2 is Arthur Slade's sequel to---you guessed it---The Hunchback Assignments. The novel follows the further adventures of the hunchbacked chameleon Modo on his further adventures protecting the Victorian British Empire from various steampunktastic threats.
Much of what I said in my review of the first volume applies to this story, as well.
What I Liked
- The setup is compelling.
- The plot is exciting and moves quickly.
- The protagonist is sympathetic.
- Some of the steampunkery is fun.
- There's just a hint of a love triangle.
What I Disliked
- Most of the technology in the book isn't too unbelievable, even if it's almost a century ahead of its time. This is steampunk, after all. There is one piece of "tech" that is more fantasy than science fiction, and its presence annoyed me.
- The narrator is just as whiny as she was last time around.
- Once again, the antagonists' actions don't seem sufficiently motivated.
- This book feels more like a a kid's book than some of the other YA fiction I've read recently.
The Bottom Line
Overall, I give The Dark Deeps 7.0 out of 10. It's entertaining, but far from great.