Book Review: Animorphs #2 — The Visitor

This review is long overdue! By which I mean the draft for this review has been sitting since August 2011, and it is now October 2012. So. Yeah. After venting out my Animorphs feels as the depression of the relaunch possibly being canceled sinks in, I feel like I have to re-read all the books and review them and love them forever and ever and ever! ono

I just bought re-released copies of #5 and #6, so more reviews are definitely on the way! ❤

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**contains some spoilers!!**

NEW Cover for Animorphs #2 — The Visitor

When the Animorphs discover that the door in their school that leads to the Yeerk pool is closed, they turn their attention to a known Human-Controller — the assistant principal in their school, Chapman — to obtain more information and find out how to plan another attack against the Yeerks.

But Rachel notices that Melissa Chapman — who happens to be the assistant principal’s daughter — is acting strange and distant. Could she be a Controller too? How far is Rachel willing to go for this war?

/skip to general information1, more thoughts2, grading3, or final impression4.

Fair warning; this review is riddled with spoilers, especially for The Invasion. I try to keep them as minimal as possible, but if you’re super sensitive about spoilers and haven’t read these books yet, go away and buy the books already!

ORIGINAL Cover of Animorphs #2 — The Visitor

Rachel kicks ass. Everyone is awesome, but seriously, I love Xena!Rachel. Not only does her character get even more layers in future books (solidifying her spot as the Animorph I’ve found most memorable), but right off the bat, you can see her bravery/recklessness (not telling Jake and the others about the fact that Visser Three was already suspicious of Chapman’s cat because she wanted to go back in) and it makes books narrated by her all the more interesting. The whole book was great, from her interactions with Melissa and the creeper hitting on her and Tobias and even Visser Three. (Also, I loved how Visser Three appreciated cats. =w=d)

I read this book last year, but even on re-read, I was hooked by the action. I don’t want to get too in-depth because I want to keep this review as spoiler-free as I can, so I’ll just say that honestly, I find this book perfect. It accomplishes everything it sets out to accomplish. It’s a slim book, but the story is incredibly satisfying, packed with high stakes and tension and action. I know I’m somewhat biased because Animorphs has been my favorite series since I started reading 10+ years ago, but in my opinion, the books have stood the test of time. Heck, they’re even more mindblowingly awesome on re-read.

1. general information

name: Animorphs: The Visitor

author: K. A. Applegate

number in series: 2

genre: young adult (science fiction)

narrative point of view: first person.

narrative tense: past tense.

2. more thoughts

readability: Rachel is awesome. She’s a great character, and makes a phenomenal narrator. The writing is even more engrossing in The Visitor than in The Invasion. The action is great. Definitely a page turner.

what I enjoyed: See above! But seriously, as much as I enjoyed The Invasion, book #2 blew my mind even more. Makes you feel like characters you know will escape are in danger and might actually die (even though (slight spoiler?) [I know that they appear in later books]). Everything was just flawless.

what I disliked:  I feel like saying “that it’s too short”, yet the short length is what makes Animorphs books awesome. As soon as I’m done, I feel like diving for the next book. Honestly, I don’t dislike anything!

hooked on the series: YES. *foams at mouth* The Visitor fleshes out the characters wonderfully. I love the growing dynamic between Rachel/Tobias, and I love the relationships between each of the characters. These five work great as main characters (although don’t get too attached to this because an upcoming book will shake up this dynamic, harharhar), and getting inside animals’ minds is fascinating.

recommended for: Anyone who’s ready for an epic adventure, who loves learning about new animals, who doesn’t mind a breakneck pace that’ll make ’em zoom through the book in no time, and who’s looking for a well-fleshed out story and compelling characters!

not recommended for: People who absolutely dislike sci-fi/gory fighting. People who aren’t satisfied with short books. People who don’t like simple writing. That being said, I’d recommend this series to anyone. If you like “young” (middle grade/YA) lit, give it a chance!

3. grading

premise: I loveloveLOVED the premise. They had to spy on their assistant principle in his own home? When they knew he was a Controller? This has “high stakes” written all over it. And every time action ramped up, it kept blowing my mind. Also, Rachel turns into a cat. Called Fluffer McKitty. 8.5/10

characters: They’re slowly getting fleshed out. Maybe not at their “peak” yet, but hey. Rachel is awesome. Love the Rachel/Tobias moments. Heck, I even love Visser Three. 9.5/10.

plot:  The plot is great. The skeptical “all books are going to disappoint” part of me thought The Visitor would be entirely carried by its premise, but there is actually a great plot! I did not expect Rachel to get captured, and I started to believe she actually might die despite knowing better! 9.5/10.

writing style: For some reason, the second book feels better written. The first one was excellent — don’t get me wrong. But… I don’t know, The Visitor has more voice? It’s not just because Rachel is a great character, but this book feels even more like the Animorphs I’m used to reading. The vocabulary is still simple and the writing is still lean. The action scenes are fast-paced and amazing. (I’m not being biased, swear!) 9/10.

OVERAL GRADE (not an average)9.5/10. [note: I am automatically bumping the ratings down because otherwise, I’d give almost every Animorphs book a 10.]

4. final impression…

I’m mad that I’m typing this instead of reading the next book already. Heck, I could even re-read The Visitor a few times in a row. Not because of its size, but because I like it that much.


About lily.

My life revolves around writing and enough geeky hobbies to annoy my parents.

Posted on 06/10/2012, in Animorphs, Book Reviews and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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