Eva Nine discovers a human colony governed by Cadmus Pryde, who has secret plans to take over the entire planet. Leaving off where Search for Wondla left off, Book Two of Tony DiTerlizzi's WondLa series begins when Eva Nina finds out that she is not the sole surviving human being on Orbona (the name for Earth in this Sci-Fi series). After defeating Besteel, the villain in Book One, she and Rovender are saved by Hailey Turner, a scrappy boy pilot who saved the pair at the end of the first book. While Hailey prepares the Bijou to fly them all back to New Attica, Eva Nine and Rovender try to locate her lost omnipod. She needs the device to be registered in the human city. Hailey lends her an old omnipod to help her locate the lost one. Eva Nine and Rovender leave the ruins of New York City to find her omnipod in the desert. They discover a gelatinous blob containing metal parts. Hailey's omnipod beeps, suggesting her own device is close. A mother sand-piper and her brood of babies come out of the desert and traps Eva Nine. She telepathically communicates with the creature, telling her that she is lost, and she needs her omnipod to go home. One of the baby sand-pipers vomits up her omnipod. Eva and Rovender hurry back to the ruined city of New York, where Hailey is ready to take them to New Attica. Eva Nine is suspicious of Hailey, but all seems well once they arrive at the outskirts of the city. They meet Hailey's grandfather Van Turner, who warns Eva Nine that New Attica will try to "rewire your mind." The next day Eva Nines wakes up to find Rovender and Van Turner gone, but Hailey takes Eva to be registered without her alien friend. Thinking that Rovender will meet up with her later, Eva meets Cadmus, the ruler of New Attica, and learns he is responsible for creating the sanctuary where she was raised for twelve years underground by the robot Muthr. Eva is registered, given a quota card, and meets Cadmus's daughter Gen (and two other girls named Gen join in too). She notices that there are no aliens in New Attica, but thinks nothing of it. While her new home is prepared, the three Gens takes her on a shopping spree. Eva changes her hairstyle and purchases clothing to fit the New Attica fashion trends. At nighttime, Eva Nine is unable to locate Cadmus before curfew and takes refuge in an aviary filled with once-extinct birds of the old Earth. She is startled to find that Eva Eight, a human being just like her who was raised in the same underground sanctuary as Eva Nine, has tracked her and wants to take her away from New Attica. Eva Eight warns that Cadmus is not a benevolent ruler and that the two of them must escape and live a life together in the sanctuary. Eva Nine tells Eva Eight that Besteel destroyed the sanctuary, but Eva Eight insists, arguing that she has waited for Eva Nine for a long time and that they are like sisters. Eva Nine resists Eva Eight and the two are separated. Eva Nine discovers that Rovender has been captured by Cadmus's forces and learns that Hailey had intentionally returned them to New Attica because he thought Cadmus would give him spare parts for his airship. Eva Nine saves Rovender from being experimented on by Cadmus's medical bots, and they meet up again with Eva Eight, who is sorry for how she treated Eva Nine. Hailey joins up with Eva Nine, and all of them try to escape New Attica together, but Cadmus and an alien creature named the Prime Adviser stop them. They learn that Cadmus wants to take over Solas, the alien city, and steal the Virus Vitae (Virus of Life) Generator, which controls the natural resources of Orbona. It is now in the city of Lacus. Hailey manages to help Rovender, Eva Eight and Nine, and another alien named Nadeau, who is related to Rovender (they are Caeruleans), to escape in the Bijou. They barely escape Cadmus's forces, and after an airship chase sequence, Hailey releases his passengers in a life capsule, and flies off to fight the enemy ships. Now Eva Nine wants to reach Lacus so she can warn Cadmus about why it is such a bad idea to steal the Virus Vitae generator. Once on the ground, Nadeau is injured, and Eva Nine uses telepathy to ask a floating tree to help them. A sand-sniper with his army of floatozoans, birds that act in symbiotic harmony with the snipers, almost attack Eva and her friends. Cadmus's warbot finds the group and attacks, but the Sand-Sniper crushes it. Eva Eight is injured, and Nadeau's health grows worse. Eva Nine and Eva Eight get into another fight, where it is revealed that it was Eight who had visited Eva Nine in the Sanctuary and had brought her the "Wondla," which the reader knows is a copy of the Wizard of Oz. Muthr would not let Eva Eight enter. Eva Nine realizes that Eva Eight had tried to find her when she was a child, and she forgives Eva Eight for her petulance. Eva Nine and Eva Eight realize they had different experiences with Muthr, and they realize that they need to forgive and reconcile if they are to survive the challenges ahead of them. The group returns Nadeau to this home city, but the leader Antiquus blames the humans for his death (and Rovender is nowhere to be found). Eva Nine warns Antiquus that Cadmus plans to attack Solus and steal the Virus Vitae generator. Rovender returns and vouches for Eva Nine. It is revealed that Rovender is the son of Antiquus. They convince Antiquus to use his shuttle so they can travel to Lacus to prevent Cadmus from taking the Virus Vitae generator. However Eva Eight wants the Virus Vitae generator for herself so she can return Orbona to its earth-like condition. The two Evas find the location of the Virus Vitae generator in the heart of the forest, but it is not what they expected. A creature generated from a life-giving plasma affected a Muthr robot which grew into a cosmic Mother. The Mother envelopes Eva Eight into her plasma and turns her into a tree. Then Mother envelopes Eva Nine and heals her injuries so she can be a hero. Eva Nine finds Otto the water bear and meets up with Rovender. They travel to Lacus to stop Cadmus. Cadmus's forces had arrived before them, and a host of Halycyonus were evacuating over the mineral lake. Trapped by the Prime Adviser, Eva Nine is almost killed, but she is saved by a school of turnfins which attacked the Prime Adviser. The book ends when Eva finds Hailey alive, bruised and battered, but alive.
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Best part of story, including ending:
I liked the environmental message of the novel. The story is a thinly veiled cautionary tale about how man's reckless abuse of nature can end up with disastrous consequences.
Best scene in story:
I liked when Eva discovers the heart of the forest and realizes the true nature of the Virus Vitae generator. The scene is suspenseful because you don't know if Eva will be consumed and destroyed by the creature she encounters there, or whether she will be transformed and made into a hero.
Opinion about the main character:
Eva Nine is a strong female character in the novel, but I did not like the subtle hints that Book Three in the series will probably be a romance story between her and Hailey Turner.