The Opal Quest by Gill Vickery
Dragon Child Book 2. A and C. Black, 2013. ISBN: 9781408176252. 80p. RRP $12.99
Highly recommended for children from 7-9 years of age. Suitable for a class read aloud. Themes: Fantasy, Quest Adventure, Witches, Magic. The Opal Quest is the second fantasy adventure in the Dragon Child Series. Tia a young girl who has been reared by dragons must recover the stolen Jewels of Power. She sets out on the journey to find the opal that gives the power of shape-shifting. She needs to prove that she is really a part of the dragon family.
This novel starts with a recap of her first adventure where Tia and her DragonBrother Finn found the emerald which gives the power of talking to animals. In this adventure they need to travel across the island to the town of Kulafoss, where she needs to confront the High Witch Yordis. Tia is confronted with challenges and uses her powers to best the witch. She is concerned for the young village children sent deep in the old mines to gather the prized small crystals. Tia's journey is filled with drama and magic. She shows her strength of character and draws on her quick thinking ability throughout the story.
Gil Vickery's novel is tightly written and shows her understanding of the young reader's need for excitement and adventure. Mike Love's dark moody black and white sketches create atmosphere and add to the reader's understanding of Tia's difficulties.