Black, Peter Jay Urban Outlaws, 274 p. Bloomsbury, 2015. $17. Violence : PG (mild).
Jack and his friends are basically orphans who have left their group homes and are living under the streets of London. They make money to live by using computer hacking skills, ninja-like moves, and a whole lot of cunning. Their latest crime stole a million dollars, which they donated most to a local charity, keeping only a little for themselves. The gang comes up against a challenge that intrigues them – Proteus, a previously only theorized supercomputer with the ultimate spying capabilities to bypass any password protections in the whole world and gather secrets. Proteus, however, has a virus, which the kids solve and then accidentally unleash. Not only do they need to isolate the virus and take down Proteus, they also need to stay out of the way of the ruthless arms dealer whose money they stole.
While I like the kids and their skills, I don’t like that they have created their own computer problems - Proteus and the virus – by their hubris at their excellent skills. Their adventure is certainly tense and attention-grabbing, but I would rather have the CHERUBS by Robert Muchamore.
MS – ADVISABLE. Cindy, Library Teacher