Friday, April 29, 2011

95. Dragonbreath: Lair of the Bat Monster

Dragonbreath: Lair of the Bat Monster by Ursula Vernon (Canada) - (US)
Dragonbreath, Book 4

Pages: 204 pages
Ages: 8+
Finished: Apr. 14, 2011
First Published: Mar. 17, 2011
Publisher: Dial Books
Genre: children, fantasy, action, graphic hybrid
Rating: 3.5/5

First sentence:

The deepest jungle. The dark heart of the rain forest. The brave explorer fights his way through the undergrowth.


Acquired: Received a review copy from Penguin Group Canada.

Reason for Reading: Next in the series.

This is the fourth book in the series and Ms. Vernon is still going strong. I'll say this was not my favourite of the bunch but it is still a worthy entry in the series. Danny and Wendell save a tiny bat from drowning and true to the form that the series ventured from in book three, Danny asks him mom for a relative who can help them save the bat's life. So she sends them off to visit cousin Steve in the rain forests of Mexico as he is conducting research on bats there. Whilst there, the three come upon the existence of a new giant species of bat that kidnaps Danny.

Fortunately Steve and Danny get along amazingly well from the beginning because, as Wendell notices, they share the same attitude and humour. This helps carry the story and keep the dynamics rolling along as the reader is used to when Wendell and Steve are partnered up for a good portion of the book searching for Danny. Of course, as expected, the plot is full of action from start to finish in this part text, part graphic novel chapter book. The humour is off-key and as hilarious as ever with Danny/Steve and Wendell's character's being so completely different.

Perhaps I've gotten used to the silliness of these stories and that is why this one didn't quite thrill me as much as the last two. Another difference is that this book does manage to add quite a lot of actual scientific information about real bats into the story. I'm not saying that's a bad thing, just different for a Dragonbreath book. The end of the book warns us that next time Danny will have a "Haunting" adventure, which sounds promising as the fifth book will be released in August is called "No Such Thing As Ghosts".

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