Ironheart by Allan Boroughs

Published by MacMillan (ISBN: 978-1447235996)

India Bentley and her sister have had a hard time since their father went missing while prospecting for oil in Siberia. When she meets tech-hunter, Verity Brown, India goes in search of him – and Ironheart, a legendary place holding the secrets of the old world. 

However, she is not alone in her search; others are seeking it too- and their motives are not so honourable. 

Ironheart is pacey from the very start. Allan Boroughs throws you straight into his world, where Southsiders- those from South London- are a threat and India Bentley lives in a walled settlement, ‘protected’ by Memhetand his gang. London is no longer recognisable after The Great Rains and India’s father has gone missing, assumed dead by everyone, but his daughter.

India is a very well –drawn; loyal, feisty, brave and reckless, she throws herself into the quest to find her father, standing up to injustice on the way. The story has echoes of Mortal Engines and Boroughs creates a convincing post-apocalyptic world. 

This is an exciting story which would make an engaging class read. Older children will connect with the characters and there are many opportunities for discussion as the story progresses. There are also opportunities for cross curricular work looking at environmental and moral issues.  Research about Siberia might also be inspired by this story as it is vividly described.