________________ CM . . . . Volume XIV Number 2 . . . . September 14, 2007

cover

Summer Dragons.

Holly Haggarty.
Toronto, ON: Napoleon, 2007.
171 pp., pbk., $9.95.
ISBN 978-1-894917-52-0.

Grades 3-5  / Ages 8-11.

Review by Jane Bridle.

*** /4

excerpt:

Something caught her attention. Lying in the grass, near the fence, was a rock. A rock in the shape of an egg. Beth reached over and scooped it up. The rock was white, bright and clean, without any dust or dirt on it. Slightly larger than a baseball, it was smooth and fit snugly into her hands. Beth had never seen a rock so perfectly egg-shaped. It was warm and surprisingly light. Could a rock be an egg? She could almost feel something inside this rock. She knew right then she had to keep it; she knew it was a treasure.

When 10-year-old Elizabeth and her older brother Eddie accompany their mother to eccentric Great Aunt Germaine's home in Caradoc for the summer, they learn more about themselves than they expected. While their mother fears that her forgetful and frail aunt is incapable of living independently because of suspected Alzheimer's, Eddie and Elizabeth gradually develop a relationship with the formidable Aunt Germaine. They also learn to cope without television, gameboys and computers as they discover the joys of a summer in the country. After Elizabeth finds what she thinks is a dragon's "egg stone" in the local cemetery and she attempts to hatch it, she sets off on a quest for the "Caradoc Swamp Monster," spurred on by her great-aunt's family stories and collection of old newspaper clippings. Along the way, Elizabeth's annoyance with her brother's constant teasing and pranks comes to a head, but the sibling rivalry is finally resolved in a satisfying conclusion.

     While the cover art may not inspire readers to pick up this book on their own, young readers who do will find this short novel to be a delightful adventure tale filled with humour, suspense and captivating characters. This is the second novel, after Dream Dad(1996), by Holly Haggarty who currently resides in Thunder Bay, ON.

Recommended.

Jane Bridle is the Branch Head at the Fort Garry Public Library in Winnipeg, MB.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.
 

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