Book #6 in the series Animorphs
by K.A. Applegate.
Disclaimer: If you've heard of Animorphs and you're thinking "Aww, how
cute," maybe you should read my introduction to the first book
to see how wrong you are.
by K.A. Applegate
The Animorphs need to investigate a hospital that appears to be involved in yet another plot of the Yeerks, so they morph roaches to spy on a meeting and find out what's up. Visser Three visits in human morph to announce that the governor of their state is going to be coming to the hospital for minor surgery, and that they plan to infest the governor at that time. The group goes to the hospital in housefly morphs and attempts to cause a hiccup that will prevent the governor's infestation, but they encounter a Jacuzzi full of unprotected Yeerks. While boiling the Yeerks to strike back, Jake ends up getting attacked and knocked into the water, and he is accidentally infested by the Yeerk that used to control his brother. His friends figure out he has been taken over and are forced to isolate him for three days while the Yeerk in his head dies, but since the Yeerk can also morph while he's possessing Jake, it's harder than it sounds.
About this book:
New known controllers:
- Indeterminate doctors and nurses at the hospital
- The governor's secretary
- Jake (temporarily)
New morphs acquired:
- This book contains an inconsistency; Jake's narration refers to Chapman as "the most important Controller we know," but considering in the previous book they discovered that Visser One is a human-Controller, that's not true.
- Cassie reveals that she has some social power with Jake due to their special bond; if she tells him what to do in a certain way, he will listen to her as a matter of course, even though she is usually not a forceful person.
- Ax's sense of humor is discussed in this book, but not conclusively. It's unsaid at this point whether he has a dry sense of humor or whether he actually just doesn't understand the jokes.
- Tobias is able to poke fun at himself and his half-and-half nature in this book, suggesting that he's getting more comfortable with what he's become.
- As "tough" as Rachel is, it's rather interesting that witnessing Cassie's fly morph causes her to run outside and puke.
- The Yeerk that infests Jake refers to his expectation that he might become "an under-visser" because of what he's done to enslave Jake. Later in the series this rank is called "sub-visser."
- When Ax acquires Jake's DNA, there is no mention of him experiencing the temporary sedation that normally happens when an animal is having its DNA acquired. In fact, he screams in anger during the process and doesn't appear to be affected by the sedative effect at all. This may be an inconsistency.
- Since Jake is narrating and experiences being controlled by a Yeerk, we now know that the Yeerks can read the hosts' minds but the hosts can't do the reverse; however, the hosts do automatically feel the emotions of the Yeerk as it reacts to what is said and what happens. Hosts and Yeerks can also communicate telepathically and have no choice but to "hear" each other.
- The Yeerk reveals that besides the Hork-Bajir, the Taxxons, and the Gedds, the Yeerk race has also conquered creatures called the Ssstram and the Mak. That's five races they've conquered, and they're working on the humans.
- Cassie is said to morph a great horned owl in this book, but has never done so before, which means she acquired it sometime during this book. However, either Rachel or Marco--or both--has also acquired an owl morph, because more than one other owl appears during the events and does not identify itself. It's possible they both acquired the owl, but it's also possible that only one did.
- At one point in Jake's stolen body the Yeerk tries to morph two birds and an ant. This may be a contradiction; because of information we see in a later book, it's clear that morphing to an animal with a skull below a certain size should prevent a Yeerk from being able to continue existing inside. They can't infest creatures who are too small for them to fit inside the skull, so if a Yeerk can make a morph-capable person shrink smaller than a Yeerk's physical body, something transformative that makes no sense must be happening to the Yeerk. Yeerks are said to be about two inches long, so fitting inside a bird skull might be possible, but an ant? No.
- Jake's vision of an eye looking at him during the Yeerk's final moments isn't something that can be interpreted using what we know at the time of this book, but this appears to be when a super-powerful evil creature called Crayak first takes notice of Jake. We will find out more about Crayak in a future book, but the big red eye is an homage to Sauron in Lord of the Rings, of which the author is a big fan.
Cassie: "Is it possible to die of total willies? I mean, do you think we could someday just gross ourselves right out of existence?"
Marco: "Okay. We're bugs. Let's get this over with, because I have to tell you--I have a major urge to step on myself."
Marco (After Ax suggests that being bipedal is very precarious): "You know, Ax, now that you mention it . . . I only have two legs! I'm falling . . . falling!"
Cassie: "If you ever need to find poop, hire a fly."
Jake (to the Yeerk, as they encounter an alpha male wolf while in wolf morph): "Go ahead. Go kick his butt. Of course, that's a real wolf there. An alpha male. Leader of his pack, which means he's probably been in a dozen fights and won them all. Go on, Yeerk. Tell him how the Yeerks are the masters of the galaxy. I'm sure he'll be very impressed."
Temrash one-one-four: "You are fools. It is madness to fight when you cannot win."
Jake: "Yes, it is foolish. It is crazy. And it's why we will win."
Next book: The Stranger, Animorphs #7