STORM: The Infinity Code is the first book in a cool new spy series for young readers. Although the heroes — Will, Gaia, and Andrew — aren’t spies in the normal sense of the word, their adventures are definitely espionage-based. In addition to the cutting edge technology, international chases, and really bad guys, they're also cut off and operate independently in a dangerous world.
I got pulled into the novel immediately by Will when he starts experimenting with his new gadgets. One of the best things about this book is that the gadgets all have basis in reality. The designs are all being worked with for military applications by several different developers around the globe. Spy stories just aren’t spy stories without these gadgets, and this book has a ton of them – including a flying insect drone and a remote-controlled rat.
Most kids are going to find someone among our three heroes they can empathize with. Personally, I really enjoyed Will because he was very sympathetic after losing his parents. He’s the real loner among them and doesn’t want to hook up with anyone, especially after he finds out what Andrew intends to do with all his millions and specialized knowledge.
Gaia is the perfect heroine for girls because she can be fantastically sarcastic when she needs to be, and she’s smarter than the boys at times. She’s independent, funny, and intelligent, yet at the same time she is a nurturer and caretaker.
Andrew is probably the least likely for readers to look up to. He’s a good character, but he has his faults. He’s driven and he has his own idea about how things should be. Also, if he feels compelled to, he will interfere in the lives of others and snoop through their things. STORM (Science and Technology Over-Rule Misery) was his brainchild and he wants to help the world be a better place to live.
None of the three have a happy home life. Will’s father was killed and his mother has virtually abandoned him (though as readers will find out in this first novel, there’s a lot of mystery about those things!), Gaia’s father is an alcoholic, and Andrew’s father is absent.
I really enjoyed how much the novel moved around. It felt like a James Bond film or an Alex Rider spy novel as it sprinted through London’s posh areas and estate manors. Then it ripped right through Europe as the trio journey to Saint Petersburg, Russia for the last confrontation.
The intriguing story is made even more exciting by the headlong rush of the pacing. E.L. Young obviously knows science and she knows a thing or two about young readers as well. STORM: The Infinity Code is one of those books that young minds will totally absorb and cling to until they’re finished. Thankfully there are two other books in the series waiting in the wings.