About the Book
Title: Dragon Defender (Dragon Defense League, Book #1)
Author: J.A. Blackburn
Publication Date: October 19, 2013
Publisher: Pip & Grey
Number of pages: 242
Recommended age: 10+
Summary (Amazon):For over a thousand years dragons have existed in secret . . . Peter Clark can build a robot from scratch and pick a lock in two minutes or less. But he can't figure out why his mother left or why his grandma refuses to talk about her. When Uncle Dominick shows up on Peter's twelfth birthday with a letter that hints at answers and an incredible story about dragons, Peter follows him, determined to find out the truth about his mother's disappearance. What he finds is a reality far different from what he ever could have imagined - where dragons live in hiding, hunted by poachers for their magical parts, and a small group of men and women work tirelessly to protect them. These are the Dragon Defenders. Peter's uncle is one. So was his mother. Now it's Peter's turn.
* Finalist in the Pacific Northwest Writers Association 2013 Literary Contest *
Peter lives a pretty quite life, keeping mostly to himself working on his robots, but when his long lost uncle appears and reveals the family's secret his life is turned upside down. Now, Peter finds himself on the adventure of a lifetime. He must rescue a dragon egg and protect the mother from vicious Knights who want to kill them to steal their magical healing powers. As Peter's Uncle Dominick lowers him into the cavern to get the egg, Peter hears voices and a gun shot. He quickly gathers the egg and heads deep into the cavern hoping to find another escape. Peter's mind is racing, will he find his way out, will he be able to save the baby dragon, and will he ever see is uncle again?
Dragon Defender is exciting right from the start, with Peter discovering that his family has a special duty to protect the dragons that still roam the earth. The author continues her quest to captivate readers by keeping the story flowing at a rapid pace. One thrilling event after another makes it difficult to put the story down. I like how Peter is willing, but cautious when it comes to his role as a Dragon Defender. As he questions his ability to succeed in his new role, his actions continue to prove he is the perfect person for this important, yet challenging task.
Dragon Defender is well written and certainly a story middle graders will find fascinating. I highly recommend picking up a copy.
More Buzz About the Book
"We read an advance copy of this book on kindle earlier this year and our 5th grade son read it twice and is anxiously awaiting the next book in the series. Great adventure, really kept our interest reading it together at night. This was one of the kids books I most enjoyed reading myself as well. The characters and the plot are well developed, and appealing to a wide range of kids (both genders). The writing is sophisticated but easy to understand, not 'dumbed down' like many kids books. The subject of dragons was so well crafted that it's easy believe that dragons just might exist, after all." ~ 5 Star Review, Leigh A., Amazon
"Reminiscent of the Fablehaven series (with just the right touch of Harry P.) this middle grade book is both an adventure and a pleasure...Fast-paced and full of wonder, this book takes middle grade readers on a vivid journey from the southwestern U.S. to Mexico; where jungles, ancient ruins and local folklore add to the enchantment that Peter finds when he discovers that dragons are in fact, real. As a former elementary school teacher, my strong feeling is that kids will eat this book whole, and then turn to searching for dragon eggs in their own backyards!" ~ 5 Star Review, Grace W., Amazon
"Dragon Defender was an absorbing action packed read! The author pulls you in from the first page and I'm not sorry to say I read it all in the first day. I'm 33 but still! This is a fun book for a chapter a night with your 5 year old (my son is loving it so far) or for yourself. The characters are well developed so you feel like you're really there, and the dragon is so believable. I'd venture so far as to say I had to remind myself that dragons don't really exist.... or do they?" ~ 5 Star Review, MGC, Amazon