Lost Cause (Steve #1; Seven #2)
Steve thinks a trip to Europe is out of the question--until he hears his grandfather's will. Suddenly he's off to Spain, armed with only a letter from his grandfather that sends him to a specific address in Barcelona. There he meets a girl named Laia and finds a trunk containing some of his grandfather's possessions, including a journal he kept during the time he fought with the International Brigades in the Spanish Civil War. Steve decides to trace his grandfather's footsteps through Spain, and with Laia's help, he visits the battlefields and ruined towns that shaped his grandfather's young life, and begins to understand the power of history and the transformative nature of passion for a righteous cause.Steve's adventures start in The Missing Skull, part of The Seven Prequels and continue in Broken Arrow, part of The Seven Sequels.

Lost Cause (Steve #1; Seven #2) Details

TitleLost Cause (Steve #1; Seven #2)
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseOct 10th, 2012
PublisherOrca Book Publishers
ISBN-139781554699445
Rating
GenreAdventure, Fiction, Young Adult, Teen, Historical, Historical Fiction, Cultural, Canada

Lost Cause (Steve #1; Seven #2) Review

  • Tracy Tang
    January 1, 1970
    The ending is so cute! Laia is such a good match for him! <3
  • Abbey
    January 1, 1970
    I started this series recently, and I started with the second book in the series. I don't think it makes much of a difference where you start in the series because they are all different stories. They interconnect with how they are each on an adventure (through their grandfather's will) but aside from that each book in the series seems to be a book unto itself. Meaning, if you like one type of book better than another you might have more options in this series because they are not all completel I started this series recently, and I started with the second book in the series. I don't think it makes much of a difference where you start in the series because they are all different stories. They interconnect with how they are each on an adventure (through their grandfather's will) but aside from that each book in the series seems to be a book unto itself. Meaning, if you like one type of book better than another you might have more options in this series because they are not all completely the same. In fact each of the seven books in the series is written by a different author. Overall, the book was alright. It is a very quick read and can easily be entertaining for boys and girls. There is adventure and mystery involved. However, the mystery is more of a personal goal for the young boy in the novel than a true mystery. Not all of the questions have answers, and that can be frustrating to some readers. So, if you need all the answers at the end of the book I wouldn't necessarily recommend this book. There is a sense of adventure in this book, and it has great historical content, so if as a reader you are interested in history and especially Spanish history I would give this book a try. Like I stated earlier, it is a very quick book to get through, which makes it both good and bad. Good because it's a quick read if you aren't an avid reader and bad because it doesn't completely suck the reader into the story. It could be a better book, but I wouldn't dismiss it if you want something quick and light to read.
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  • Francis
    January 1, 1970
    The second book of The Seven Series (a collaboration between 7 authors, each writing a story about a grandchild of a deceased grandfather).I did not enjoy this book quite as much as the first of the series (Between Heaven and Earth). Some of the writing seemed very forced, and there wasn't as much flow to it. The story of the second grandchild was interesting. Steve's story took him to Spain, and went through much of the history of the Spanish Civil War. This was the most interesting part of the The second book of The Seven Series (a collaboration between 7 authors, each writing a story about a grandchild of a deceased grandfather).I did not enjoy this book quite as much as the first of the series (Between Heaven and Earth). Some of the writing seemed very forced, and there wasn't as much flow to it. The story of the second grandchild was interesting. Steve's story took him to Spain, and went through much of the history of the Spanish Civil War. This was the most interesting part of the book, as beforehand, I knew nothing about this period in time. Steve's grandfather was part of the International Brigades, and Steve follows his grandfather's journey by reading his journal. At times I did actually pull up Google to search some of the information presented in the book. All of it was historically accurate. I learned more than I had expected about the Spanish Civil War!Looking forward to reading the rest of the series. Having 7 different authors write 7 different stories gives a unique perspective into each grandson. Two down, five to go!
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  • Mary
    January 1, 1970
    I didn't know what to expect from this book but was looking for a book for students at school and grand kids. I was pleasantly surprised. John Wilson does a good job portraying both a young adult's attitude and the realities of war - not an easy task. Steve, the main character, is assigned the task of going to Spain to pick-up a package left by his deceased grandfather. He's not sure about the assignment as he didn't understand his grandfather but because he wishes to travel and since his grandf I didn't know what to expect from this book but was looking for a book for students at school and grand kids. I was pleasantly surprised. John Wilson does a good job portraying both a young adult's attitude and the realities of war - not an easy task. Steve, the main character, is assigned the task of going to Spain to pick-up a package left by his deceased grandfather. He's not sure about the assignment as he didn't understand his grandfather but because he wishes to travel and since his grandfather's estate will pay for the trip he agrees. What he doesn't expect is to be so moved by his grandfather's experiences during the war. Wilson does a wonderful job of describing how Steve's grandfather moves from an idealist to someone who has faced the realities of war. What affected me the most was the stories from the modern day residents. This book is the second in a series of stories about grandsons each having a different author giving each book a singular voice - an interesting premise. Will read the rest.
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  • Lgeorge
    January 1, 1970
    Forgettable ... I became excited about the series because I loved the premise and I loved Between Heaven and Earth. I loved the first book because Eric Walters is an amazing writer. This book is my second read in the series and it did nothing to pull me in and keep me interested.
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  • Paula
    January 1, 1970
    It was a bad idea reading a book about war on Christmas Eve...but the book was well written and kept me interested throughout the book.
  • Wendy
    January 1, 1970
    “Lost Cause” the second book in the “Seven” series, each written by a different author begins when Steve’s grandfather sends him on a quest to Spain to hunt for a trunk of his grandfather’s possessions accumulated during the Spanish Civil War. Meeting up with Laia he unlocks the trunk safeguarded by her family, discovering a journal his grandfather wrote while serving in the International Brigade during the war. Together he and Laia decide to retrace his grandfather’s footsteps through the battl “Lost Cause” the second book in the “Seven” series, each written by a different author begins when Steve’s grandfather sends him on a quest to Spain to hunt for a trunk of his grandfather’s possessions accumulated during the Spanish Civil War. Meeting up with Laia he unlocks the trunk safeguarded by her family, discovering a journal his grandfather wrote while serving in the International Brigade during the war. Together he and Laia decide to retrace his grandfather’s footsteps through the battlefields and ruined towns of Spain that left their mark on the young soldier’s life with all their tragedy, heartbreak and death.Historically-based the plot is riveting as Steve and Laia take a trip back in time through the eyes of his grandfather as he transforms from being naïve, romanticising the war against Fascism to facing the cold realities of war. Vividly John Wilson brings to life the sights and sounds of Spain as well as the landscape of a war where a church is bombed killing women and children, and anti-Fascist supporters are massacred. Experiencing the past Steve quickly learns about how complicated life can be as well as about the horrors of war, while drawing close to Laia whose friendship he’s determined to keep unlike the love his grandfather was forced to leave behind. Emotionally-charged and captivating the plot is enthralling from beginning to end.Dreaming of travelling Europe but without money or a job, seventeen-year-old unorganized and insecure Steve is given the opportunity to travel along his grandfather’s path during the war years in Spain. Disliking that his brother DJ is so unlike him with his self-assurance, optimism and superior attitude, in gaining more confidence and a different perspective as he travels with Laia, the tables turn as it's Steve who will support and encourage DJ.I thoroughly enjoyed “Lost Cause” a well-written and fascinating journey as Steve traces his grandfather’s footsteps back in time through a bloody war that held no triumph but only pain and heartache.
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  • Sarak
    January 1, 1970
    Whoops, wrong book. This second book in the series has one of the grandsons off to Spain to find out about his grandfather's actions during the Spanish civil war.The story is educational without being too preachy. The girl/boy interaction was realistic and not too romancy. There are still mysteries in the grandfather's life.
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  • Art
    January 1, 1970
    What a story about what one's grandfather did in his youth!Reminded me of Ernest Hemingway's book, "For Whom the Bells Tolls" & " A Farewell to Arms".I was also reminded of the Finn-Russian War, " A Frozen Hell" & "The Darkest Evening", "Dancing Under the Red Star" "The Winter War" and about Norway's resistance fighters.
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  • Lori
    January 1, 1970
    Follow 17-year-old Steve as he traces his grandfather's journey through Spain during the Spanish Civil War. Steve is one of seven grandsons, each of whom has his own journey to undertake. The story give insight to the Spanish Civil War and its effect on the people in its path.
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  • Awsam
    January 1, 1970
    I didn't even get to read it yet u idioits
  • Marie Stark
    January 1, 1970
    Bored me out of my mind
  • Nicola Mansfield
    January 1, 1970
    I was interested in this series when I first heard about it. What attracted me to it was a series of connected books where, it is proposed, the reading order does not matter. The collection of Canadian authors contains one of my all-time favourites whom I read everything he writes, Shane Peacock. So I would eventually at least read that one book for sure. I'd read and enjoyed three of the other authors, have always wanted to read another one of them leaving me with only two new-to-me authors. It I was interested in this series when I first heard about it. What attracted me to it was a series of connected books where, it is proposed, the reading order does not matter. The collection of Canadian authors contains one of my all-time favourites whom I read everything he writes, Shane Peacock. So I would eventually at least read that one book for sure. I'd read and enjoyed three of the other authors, have always wanted to read another one of them leaving me with only two new-to-me authors. It sounded very promising. I was pleased to have won this particular title as I have read and enjoyed a few of author John Wilson's books.I was immediately engaged in the story right from the beginning. The common set up between the books of the Grandfather giving the boys tasks to accomplish in his will is unique and had me interested. The main character of the grandson Steve is well fleshed out and we get to know him very well throughout this book. Wilson is mainly an historical novelist and while this is a contemporary story it is rooted in the past by means of a search into the Grandfather's past in Spain and the finding of his journal from the year 1938. The book alternates with a present day narrative and journal entries of the young grandfather fighting in the 15th International Brigade during the Spanish Civil War ending with the final engagement at the Battle of the Ebro. I found the story utterly compelling and engrossing. I know virtually nothing of this war and learnt much from the personal point of view of a common soldier. It also really made me think hard, the concept of fighting Fascism with Communism is very difficult for me to wrap my mind around; one evil fighting another. The book has made me eager to read other books set during the Spanish Civil War should I come across them and I very much want to continue this series. Occasional references were made to Steve's twin brother who had his own task to complete scattering their grandfather's ashes; so I think that is the book I will move onto next. I am also very eager to see if picking and choosing the reading order will really make no difference to the enjoyment of the series. I found this a total page-turner and it has solidified my opinion of John Wilson as a strong writer of historical fiction.
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  • Shonna Froebel
    January 1, 1970
    This is the second book in Seven: The Series, which started with the novel Between Heaven and Earth by Eric Walters. This is the story of Steve, the younger twin brother of DJ, from the first book in the series. Steve didn't get on with his grandfather as well as his brother or some of his cousins, but he finds himself intrigued by the task that his grandfather has set for him, and pleased that it offers him the chance to go to Europe, which he had wanted to do this summer but wasn't sure he cou This is the second book in Seven: The Series, which started with the novel Between Heaven and Earth by Eric Walters. This is the story of Steve, the younger twin brother of DJ, from the first book in the series. Steve didn't get on with his grandfather as well as his brother or some of his cousins, but he finds himself intrigued by the task that his grandfather has set for him, and pleased that it offers him the chance to go to Europe, which he had wanted to do this summer but wasn't sure he could raise the money to do. The task is framed as a bit of a mystery, and it takes Steve to Spain to uncover his grandfather's past. He discovers his grandfather fought against Franco in the Spanish Civil War as part of the International Brigades. He also discovered his grandfather's early romance, and together with a young Spanish girl, he uses the material he discovers to trace his grandfather's footsteps to discover a story that isn't as straightforward as he first thought it might be. This gives us some history in the context of the Spanish Civil War, and the geography of the area around Barcelona where Steve's grandfather fought. Like DJ, we see Steve develop as a character as he ventures out on his own for the first time. Another enjoyable read
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  • Shanella
    January 1, 1970
    The Lost Cause is one of seven parallel stories written by different authors. John Wilson’s story follows Steve, one of the six cousins, who are tasked by their recently departed grandfather to figure out a puzzle about his life, Steve’s task sends him to Europe. When there, Steve learns a lot about his grandfather’s time with the International Brigades in the Spanish Civil War from a girl named Laia. Laia is the granddaughter to a woman that Steve’s grandfather knew while he was fighting in Spa The Lost Cause is one of seven parallel stories written by different authors. John Wilson’s story follows Steve, one of the six cousins, who are tasked by their recently departed grandfather to figure out a puzzle about his life, Steve’s task sends him to Europe. When there, Steve learns a lot about his grandfather’s time with the International Brigades in the Spanish Civil War from a girl named Laia. Laia is the granddaughter to a woman that Steve’s grandfather knew while he was fighting in Spain and together, the retrace the steps of Steve’s grandfather took during the war. The Lost Cause was a quick read and a pretty good read if you are interested in learning a bit of history as well as reading a good story. It went by quickly, and though I couldn’t find myself believing the origin of their task, I did enjoy the different things that Steve was able to show us of his grandfather’s life as a Canadian soldier. One thing I did like about the story is that, you didn’t have to read them in any order, Lost Cause could have stood on its own and did a good job of doing just that. I’d recommend this for history buffs, or anyone who likes reading fiction placed in a historical setting with historical accuracy.
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  • Desiree
    January 1, 1970
    Steve is not excited about attending the reading of his late grandfathers will, that is, until the lawyer reveals two secrets. The first secret being that there is a 7th mysterious grandson that the family has yet to meet. The second secret is that each of the grandsons is given a specific task that they are to complete. The funds and resources have been provided, but they must go alone. Steve is excited to learn that his task is to travel to Spain as he has been saving to travel to Europe for a Steve is not excited about attending the reading of his late grandfathers will, that is, until the lawyer reveals two secrets. The first secret being that there is a 7th mysterious grandson that the family has yet to meet. The second secret is that each of the grandsons is given a specific task that they are to complete. The funds and resources have been provided, but they must go alone. Steve is excited to learn that his task is to travel to Spain as he has been saving to travel to Europe for a year. In an interesting twist, the task given to him is in the form of a mystery that he must solve as his grandfather knew that he is a lover of mystery novels. What Steve first thinks will be a simple task turns out to be more complicated than he can imagine. With the help of his tour guide, Laia, and old diary left by his grandfather, Steve is able to piece together the mysteries of his grandfather’s past. This is book number 2 in a series of 7. However, a reader would not need to read the books in order to enjoy this book. This book is filled with suspense and strong in historical information. Readers who enjoy histories and mysteries would enjoy this book.
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  • Heidi
    January 1, 1970
    Orca's The Seven Series gives us seven authors each writing the story of one of David McLean's grandsons. During the reading of David's will, four of his daughters and six of his grandsons learn that David left letters instructing each grandson to complete a task. At the same time, they learn there was another daughter and another grandson. A family tree showing David's descendents and the book covers in which each is the protagonist, and a map showing where each grandson will travel, are good a Orca's The Seven Series gives us seven authors each writing the story of one of David McLean's grandsons. During the reading of David's will, four of his daughters and six of his grandsons learn that David left letters instructing each grandson to complete a task. At the same time, they learn there was another daughter and another grandson. A family tree showing David's descendents and the book covers in which each is the protagonist, and a map showing where each grandson will travel, are good additions in the front of the book. This book finds Steve travelling to Spain, following his grandfather's footsteps via a journal found in a trunk left in-country from the Spanish Civil War. David volunteered to fight during the war and hoped to return to Spain to retrieve the trunk and another very important item but he wasn't able to make the trip. Steve learns about a side of his grandfather he never knew as he learns about a period of history which he was ignorant about. Well done.
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  • Jeffrey
    January 1, 1970
    2nd book in the Seven series from Orca - better than Between Heaven and Earth mostly because it avoided the sappy "from beyond the grave" preachiness of David McLean, spectral grandpa, and has a much less annoying hero, DJ's twin brother Steve - I liked that Steve's task is find out about his grandfather's being part of the Spanish Civil War though more than a bit annoyed at how Wilson positions the Republicans as being no better than Franco's Fascists - while I'm not excusing the Republicans, t 2nd book in the Seven series from Orca - better than Between Heaven and Earth mostly because it avoided the sappy "from beyond the grave" preachiness of David McLean, spectral grandpa, and has a much less annoying hero, DJ's twin brother Steve - I liked that Steve's task is find out about his grandfather's being part of the Spanish Civil War though more than a bit annoyed at how Wilson positions the Republicans as being no better than Franco's Fascists - while I'm not excusing the Republicans, the long-term legacy of the atrocities of Franco's fascists is blurred in the simplistic both sides have things they need to answer for - Guernica, anyone? On to Ted Staunton's Jump Cut!
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  • Nick
    January 1, 1970
    This was a very good. It was enjoyable for me because it is kind of a Mystery, and it also was about war which are two topics I like to read about. I also enjoyed it because it got started rather quickly instead of havering a long exposition. I think that the author could have maybe given more details about everything. He could have specifically gone into more detail about Steve's relationship with his grandpa. Another thing I liked is how John Wilson used real facts about the Spanish civil war. This was a very good. It was enjoyable for me because it is kind of a Mystery, and it also was about war which are two topics I like to read about. I also enjoyed it because it got started rather quickly instead of havering a long exposition. I think that the author could have maybe given more details about everything. He could have specifically gone into more detail about Steve's relationship with his grandpa. Another thing I liked is how John Wilson used real facts about the Spanish civil war. I think that this would be a good read for almost any level reader it's a good book that I had a hard time putting down. I think that I will be reading the others in the series soon.
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  • Philip
    January 1, 1970
    A good read with good characterizations and good descriptions of the places where it all took, and takes, place and I learned some history that I wasn't aware of which is something I really like in a mystery/adventure story. I don't think it was quite as adventurous as "Between Heaven and Earth" as the major action didn't involve Steve in the present but was Grandpa David's from the past whereas in the first book most of the action involved DJ in the present time. So far this is a very interesti A good read with good characterizations and good descriptions of the places where it all took, and takes, place and I learned some history that I wasn't aware of which is something I really like in a mystery/adventure story. I don't think it was quite as adventurous as "Between Heaven and Earth" as the major action didn't involve Steve in the present but was Grandpa David's from the past whereas in the first book most of the action involved DJ in the present time. So far this is a very interesting set of books and a unique concept.
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  • Barbara McVeigh
    January 1, 1970
    Love the concept of this series. A grandfather leaves his seven grandsons specific tasks and adventures in his will.LOST CAUSE concerns Steve discovering his grandfather's involvement in the Spanish Civil War. The book does a great job at weaving in historical facts and ambiguities. I would say that is a good choice for a reluctant readers, except that sometimes I found the writing a bit patronizing.The series could be used for literature circles, as well as research on the contexts and locals o Love the concept of this series. A grandfather leaves his seven grandsons specific tasks and adventures in his will.LOST CAUSE concerns Steve discovering his grandfather's involvement in the Spanish Civil War. The book does a great job at weaving in historical facts and ambiguities. I would say that is a good choice for a reluctant readers, except that sometimes I found the writing a bit patronizing.The series could be used for literature circles, as well as research on the contexts and locals of each novel.
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  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    I liked this book. The Series reminds us that each member of a family has a unique experience and perspective. Steve's challenge and relationship with his grandfather was quite different from DJ's. I like the overlap in stories with the first book, although I question the texts between the brothers. As I was reading, I didn't feel like they were the same. Steve takes us on an adventure through Spain both past and present. I think this book will really appeal to teen boys and girls with its mix o I liked this book. The Series reminds us that each member of a family has a unique experience and perspective. Steve's challenge and relationship with his grandfather was quite different from DJ's. I like the overlap in stories with the first book, although I question the texts between the brothers. As I was reading, I didn't feel like they were the same. Steve takes us on an adventure through Spain both past and present. I think this book will really appeal to teen boys and girls with its mix of war and romance.
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  • Sandy
    January 1, 1970
    I enjoyed this story, one of the seven books in www.seventheseries.com, thanks to its combination of history, mystery, a recovered journal that documents a teenager’s passionate belief in a cause and also a touch of romance. Reading his grandfather’s journal, Steve and his self-appointed local guide Laia are inspired to trace his wartime movements through Spain, learning a great deal about a secret part of his grandfather’s life and history in general.
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  • Megan Weiss
    January 1, 1970
    I just couldn't get into this. The plot was way underdeveloped and lacked emotion, detail, and pace. The characters were way underdeveloped, and in some parts it seemed very cliched, especially in dialogue. This seems like more of a first draft of a book rather than a finished one, the idea is there...it just needs a lot of development.
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  • Hannah
    January 1, 1970
    This was a great book! I loved reading the grandfathers journal. Although I liked Between Heaven and Earth a bit better (I loved the mountain climbing) this was good too. I loved at the end when we got to see Steve's side of the conversation which convinced DJ to finish the climb."I didn't know you had a twin brother. Where is he?"Halfway up a mountain in Tanzania."
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  • Monique
    January 1, 1970
    I liked this book a lot. Steve's story was fun to read, but the parts and information about the Spanish Civil War were much more interesting. I couldn't stop looking for more information and pictures about this war. I have to thank John Wilson for showing me how interesting the Spanish Civil War is.
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  • Shonna
    January 1, 1970
    So far this is a fantastic series. I just ordered the whole set for the school library. They're recommended grade 5 and up. Three of the series are up for Red Maple awards this year. The books are about 7 grandsons but each book so far has had a strong female character as well. Definitely one that will appeal to both boys and girls.
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  • Stephanie Stocks
    January 1, 1970
    When Steve's grandpa dies, he leaves each of his grandsons with a special task to complete. Steve's task fulfills his dream of spending the summer in Europe, but he is also required to solve the 75-year-old mystery of his grandfather's past...a past that includes war and lost love.
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  • Stacey Cimino
    January 1, 1970
    I really enjoyed reading the second series of the books. What a wonderful story of how the grandfather sent each of his grandchildren on a different adventure and how there each learning about there grandfather and also how there learning something about themselves.
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  • Meenu
    January 1, 1970
    My favourite from the three I've read!!!:o I love this book! The parts with his grandfathers journal intrigue me and make this book all the more enjoyable. Cant wait to get my hands on the next one!!!
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