Synopses & Reviews
Jake Mendoza lives at the Makepeace Institute of Integrated Dragon Studies in Smokehill National Park. Smokehill is home to about two hundred of the few remaining draco australiensis, which is extinct in the wild. Keeping a preserve for dragons is controversial: detractors say dragons are extremely dangerous and unjustifiably expensive to keep and should be destroyed. Environmentalists and friends say there are no records of them eating humans and they are a unique example of specialist evolution and must be protected. But they are up to eighty feet long and breathe fire.
On his first overnight solo trek, Jake finds a dragona dragon dying next to the human she killed. Jake realizes this news could destroy Smokehill even though the dead man is clearly a poacher who had attacked the dragon first, that fact will be lost in the outcry against dragons.
But then Jake is struck by something more urgent — he sees that the dragon has just given birth, and one of the babies is still alive. What he decides to do will determine not only their futures, but the future of Smokehill itself.
In this fascinating look at a modern-day world where dragons truly exist, the Newbery Medal-winning author of The Hero and the Crown takes readers into a controversial nature preserve, which about 200 of the worlds few remaining dragons call home.
Dragons are extinct in the wild, but the Makepeace Institute of Integrated Dragon Studies in Smokehill National Park is home to about two hundred of the world’s remaining creatures. Until Jake discovers a dying dragon that has given birth—and one of the babies is still alive.
About the Author
Robin McKinley has won various awards and citations for her writing, including the Newbery Medal for The Hero and the Crown and a Newbery Honor for The Blue Sword. Her other books include Sunshine; the New York Times bestseller Spindle's End; two novel-length retellings of the fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, Beauty and Rose Daughter; and a retelling of the Robin Hood legend, The Outlaws of Sherwood. She lives with her husband, the English writer Peter Dickinson.