<Ax? Tell me something. When Jake sent you to get help, why did you come for me and not Marco or Cassie?>
<Prince Jake was specific. Get Rachel.>
<Did he say why?>
Ax hesitated a moment. Then he said, <Jake told me Tobias was probably dead. I said this was a terrible thing. And Prince Jake said, "Yes. If David's killed Tobias, we may have to do a terrible thing, too. Get Rachel.">
First off, this is one of my favorite books, if only for the number of emotional punches contained within. This is the first time the other Animorphs start to realize that Jake has become more than just the guy calling the shots--he's using them. Because he's a good leader, he's using them in ways that make sense, but subtly, possibly without even realizing it, and realizing what that means for each of them based on what Jake values them for is interesting. And of course, for Rachel, it's somewhat disturbing.
On top of that, we've got a guy who they tried to save, a guy who is only alive and free because they intervened, and he's trying to kill them. Not to mention, the whole leaders of the free world meet-up they've got to keep the Yeerks from taking advantage of. I love the way they handle stopping the Yeerks here, because it's actually the closest to fun they seem to have had in awhile. It's a bright spot of levity in what is an otherwise extremely dark book.
Then of course, there's the solution they come up with--or really, that Cassie comes up with--for handling David after he's made it clear they can't just leave him to his own devices. It's brilliant, but is it really the best solution? Should they have just killed him and been done with it? I always wonder just how Ax and Rachel really dealt with what they had to listen to at the end.
What did you like about this book? What did you not expect? How do you think you'd have reacted to everything if you had been David?
Next time: #23 The Pretender--the Ellimist continues to fuck with Tobias!