- "Let's focus here. Rachel and Tobias may have been killed. In any case, there's nothing we can do about it. We are millions of years in our own past, and there's nothing we can do about that. We're in the age of dinosaurs, and none of our morphs can even begin to fight things like... like that. So the question is: What do we do?"
- ―Jake to Cassie, Marco and Ax
Megamorphs #2: In the Time of Dinosaurs, published in May 1998 and written by K.A. Applegate, is the second book in the Megamorphs series, a set of companion books to the Animorphs series. With respect to continuity, it takes place between The Decision and The Departure. It is narrated by all six members of the Animorphs.
We could blame everything that happened on Marco. He was the one who heard about the downed submarine. He was the one who thought we should check it out. And everyone knows that if Marco's up to a challenge, I'm definitely there.
Everything was going fine. Until the explosion. An explosion that blows us millions of years back in time. Back to the age of dinosaurs. Now Tobias, Cassie, Marco, Ax, Jake and I are fighting for our lives with every step we take. But that's not our biggest problem. Our biggest problem is we have no idea how to get back to our own time ...
To be added
- Eva (Mentioned Only)
- Elfangor-Sirinial-Shamtul (Mentioned Only)
- Yeerks (Mentioned Only)
- Gedds (Mentioned Only)
- Taxxons (Mentioned Only)
- Hork-Bajir (Mentioned Only)
- Ellimist (Mentioned Only)
- Pemalites (Mentioned Only)
- Chee (Mentioned Only)
- Erek King (Mentioned Only)
- Korla (Mentioned Only)
- Skrit Na (Mentioned Only)
- Elfangor's fighter (Mentioned Only)
- Due to a nuclear fusion explosion, the Animorphs encounter a Sario Rip that transports them sixty-five million years into the past, during the late Cretaceous age of the dinosaurs. To their surprise, they discover that there are two advanced, intelligent and sentient species residing on Earth – the Nesk, a race of ants from outer space, and the Mercora, a peaceful, non-violent race. The Animorphs steal a nuclear weapon from the Nesk in order to recreate an explosion to send them back to their own time, but the Nesk, intent on eradicating all other sentient species, divert a comet's trajectory to impact Earth and kill them all.
- The Mercora wish to use the nuke to destroy the comet, thus saving their lives, although it would mean the Animorphs would remain trapped in the Cretaceous Age. Tobias, who has realized from the beginning that the Mercora were meant to die out along with the dinosaurs, lulls them to a false sense of safety by giving them the nuke, although he privately orders Ax to disable it. Leaving the Mercora to die, Tobias orders the other Animorphs to head to the ocean, where they morph into dolphin and use the nuclear fallout and subsequent shockwaves of the comet's impact to close the Sario Rip, which sends them back to their own time.
- It is revealed that the Animorphs were meant to be present on Earth during the late Cretaceous age, as their actions led to the extinction of both the Mercora and the dinosaurs, thus allowing humanity to evolve and prosper. This causes a causal loop, meaning that when the Animorphs return to their present time, their current world remains unchanged because their actions in the past led to the timeline they traveled from.
- More relationship moments are shown between Tobias and Rachel, and Cassie and Jake. Jake and Cassie console one another when they discover that they are in the age of the dinosaurs, and Jake gives Cassie a one-armed hug. Later, when Cassie has lost herself in the instincts of her Tyrannosaurus Rex morph, Jake demorphs, knowing that the sight of his human form would trigger Cassie's mental state to assert herself. Tobias mentions that that he has always liked Rachel, even before he became a red-tailed hawk, and that he finds her extremely beautiful. While Rachel is being chased by Deinonychus, Tobias wills himself to attempt to resist the instincts in order to protect Rachel, citing that he must do what he can as Rachel needs him. Rachel also rips her leotard into strips, exposing her midriff, in order to fashion bandages to mend Tobias's wing. She tells Tobias not to break another wing as she would have no more material left to spare, only for Tobias to remark that he would not even look at her if she had little to no clothing on, with Rachel replying with "Yeah, right." Additionally, Marco and Rachel's relationship is touched upon a little, with Marco becoming extremely sad at the notion of Rachel being dead and Rachel going back to teasing him when they reunite.
- Due to some unexplained side effect of the Sario Rip, the Animorphs are unable to morph into dinosaurs upon returning to their present time.
- This marks the third time in the series that the Animorphs travel through time, following The Stranger and The Forgotten, and the second time they travel to the past. This is also the fourth time Tobias has time traveled, and the third time he has time traveled to the past, as Tobias briefly visited the past in The Change.
- Megamorphs #2 was originally a big summer event for Animorphs. There was a lot of advertising put into it months before its release, with posters and special book stands for book sales that were given out. It also stands as the only Megamorphs to have seven versions of its cover, each with a different color front, which reflected to a different Animorph in the inside cover: Jake, Rachel, Tobias, Cassie, Marco, and Ax. The seventh inside cover consisted of all of their covers combined in a two-by-three grid.
- Ax and Tobias are the only two who are not shown in a stage of mid-morph in the inside covers because their natural bodies are the forms they typically use in combat, and thus do not have a unique battle morph.
- Ax reveals that an Andalite's stalk eyes are capable of seeing infrared and other spectra of light. He also reveals that an Andalite's internal sense of tracking time is related to the orbital rotation of the planet.
- K.A. Applegate alluded that the Nesk who left Earth eventually became modern day Earth ants.
- Along with The Ellimist Chronicles this is one of the only two books in the series in which no Yeerk appears.
- In chapter 2, Marco questions why the Animorphs are in the ocean in the middle of the storm, although chapter 1 makes it very clear that it was Marco's idea to begin with.
- On p51, Tobias says that the only morph that he has that would be useful on land and against predators would be his human morph, although he possesses a Hork-Bajir morph. This was most likely the morph he attempted to use to escape from the Kronosaurus.
- Given the rules of morphing and the rules of time traveling this series has presented, there is no logical reason given as to why Tobias was unable to fix his broken wing through morphing.
- Immediately after Jake and Marco go to sleep, Cassie and Ax notice a comet. When Jake wakes up later, he asks how long he has been asleep, to which Ax replies that an hour and fifty-two minutes have passed. Jake then notices the comet, and Ax replies that it he has observed significant changes to the comet in the last three hours. Ax could not have been able to observe a comet for three hours if he had only noticed it, or had time to observe it, for less than two hours.
- The Animorphs are able to hear Tobias and Rachel's thought-speak even though it is not directed at them, and shortly after the Mercora, whose existence the Animorphs were unaware of, manage to hear their thought-speak as well. However, in the previous book (The Decision), Ax did remark that his human friends had a tendency to misdirect thought-speak thus not keeping their conversations private.
- On p163, Marco remarks that Tobias is speaking up for the first time, regarding the debate on raiding the Nesk base. However, Tobias was the first one to chime in, on p161.
- There is a missing thought-speak sign in the second paragraph on p220.
- Rachel calls the Mercora 'Mercorans' on p222.
- Tobias refers to the Kronosaurus and the Elasmosaurus as dinosaurs, but they are actually pliosaurs. He also mentions a Spinosaurus, which was not around during the late Cretaceous period, although the author's note at the end of the book lampshades the latter's presence.
- According to K.A. Retrieved on 1999-05. "What happened to the Nesk? Been to a picnic lately?" - K.A.