Jack McKinley is the kind of kid who can take a coffeemaker and papier-mache volcano, and rig it to catapult a plastic dinosaur as an alarm clock to wake him up in the morning. He's also the kind of kid who doesn't believe that he has any hidden talents either though. The Colossus Rises begins with that dinosaur smacking Jack right between the eyes. Peter Lerangis provides some back story on how Jack has au pair's (or a "don't-care-giver") watching over him as his father travels the world. Jump ahead to Jack sticking up for a kid when he gets this feeling like "something had crawled into my head and was kickboxing with my brain." He falls down and the last thing he remembers is a car speeding toward him. When he awakens, Jack is in the hospital with a mysterious doctor examining him and ends up being injected in the arm. I must admit that all sounds horribly sinister. That isn't the worst either, Jack finds that he has been kidnapped, gets holes drilled in his head and is now stuck in some weird Institute. Better yet, Jack has a rare genetic condition that is connected to the lost ancient civilization of Atlantis. Everyone who has this condition is marked by a lambda on the back of their head and usually die before the age of fourteen. Jack isn't the only one either, he's a part of the team of Select which includes Cass (amazing photo recall and can speak backwards), Aly (hacker and movie genius expert), and Marco (strong athletic type). Being connected to Atlantis has some major disadvantages. For instance, the power that controls it was destroyed and hidden all over the world. Hence the title, Seven Wonders. It will be these four children's quest to find these items and bring them back to Atlantis.
The Colossus Rises is part science fiction with mythology. Some of the heavier science fiction parts delve into medicine and possessing of a "G7W marker or a piece of genetic code." I found this to be an interesting concept but was lost with some of the more detailed descriptions of "ceresacrum's feeding off of powers from Atlantis." I found the mythology interesting especially when Lerangis was discussing the Atlantean rulers and how the Loculus were first made and why they were separated. Also the parts when they discover ancient paintings on the walls. This is some of the parts that I think would have been wonderful as a Pre-Novella. Although, I realize that Lerangis probably wrote The Select after he had already completed The Colossus Rises, not like you can rip that part out now. I just think it would have made an interesting short story, maybe it comes back later in the series though too. I found that The Colossus Rises could have been a wonderful introductory look into the ancient Seven Wonders of the world. With the first focusing around The Colossus of Rhodes, I think I expected to learn more about this ancient wonder. Even when the children enter a Library in the city of Rhodes to do some research there are only bits and pieces of information given about The Colossus via conversations with the librarian. It seems a missed opportunity to give a little history, but maybe that is just the parent in me talking. If anything maybe if the historical information didn't fit into the storyline it could have been put into an authors note or somewhere in the back of the book? Again it's probably just the parent in me talking. Overall, I felt The Colussus Rises was a wonderful first adventure, science fiction mythology there is plenty of room left for the story to progress further, what with six more Ancient Wonders to visit as well as determining who else is out to locate the Locolus. Copy Reviewed was from the Public Library.