________________ CM . . . . Volume XVI Number 18 . . . . January 15, 2010


Draco's Fire. (Dragon Speaker Series, #3).

E. L. Thomas.
Toronto, ON: High Interest Publishing/HIP Books, 2009.
112 pp., pbk., $12.95.
ISBN 978-1-897039-48-9.

Grades 5-8 / Ages 10-13.

Review by Katie Edwards.

** /4


Jacob didn't feel any pain. What he felt was strong. Strong and angry and very, very powerful. He flexed his claws, getting the feel of them.

He sensed Draco's mind, as well, deep inside, but Draco wasn't ready to fight yet. Jacob was.

Kain ran, stumbling backwards to get away from Jacob-the-dragon


In the final volume of the "Dragon Speaker" series, Jacob and his friends are planning their final battle. Jacob has two magical stones which need to be melded together on the night of the dragon comet. It has been prophesied that this is the time when Kain will be vulnerable and can be beaten.

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     Jacob and Orson are separated during a skirmish, and upon his return, Jacob discovers that Orson has been enchanted. He has turned Lia and Aldous over to the soldiers, and he steals the magical stones from Jacob in order to deliver them to Kain.

     During the final battle, Orson snaps out of the spell just in time to save his friends. He has also somehow gotten the light stone back from Kain, and he tosses it to Jacob, shouting, "I'll explain later!" However, the explanation never comes.

     Nonetheless, the final battle is satisfying, with every one of the heroes playing an important role.

     Jacob's physical weakness becomes a moot point when he enters Draco's mind and controls the dragon in a fight. This move will appeal to young readers, but it would have been interesting to see Jacob overcome his limitations, rather than avoiding them.

     Overall, the "Dragon Speaker" series is a worthy purchase if you are looking for a hi-lo fantasy. The plot holes are mostly eclipsed by the non-stop action, and the characters are believable and easy to identify with.

     More and more often, fantasy books are expanding to several hundred pages - even those meant for children. While this is not a problem in and of itself, it does leave struggling readers in the dust. This series is a good choice for kids who love swords and sorcery but feel intimidated by the hulking volumes currently eating up your shelf space.


Katie Edwards is the Cybrarian (Teen Services) for Calgary Public Library.

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

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