Ride the Wind: Skydragon 3
Allen & Unwin, 2021
200pp., pbk., RRP $A15.99
When a mysterious glowing purple ball ignites their home while they are innocently making pizzas for tea, only Amber and her brother Reggie emerge from the inferno alive but both are badly injured, Reggie in a coma. Weeks later, watching from her neighbour’s fence Amber sees what remains of her home demolished in a very hush-hush operation.
Five years later, with Reggie still in a coma and Amber reminded daily of the events because of the scar on her face, she is the butt of nasty comments and bullying from her peers who refuse to see the girl beyond the scar. The only constant is her fascination with dragons and her only joy, the beauty of the insect world. But something very strange happens when she trips and falls while on an insect-watching excursion with her class and is surrounded by a swarm of deadly hornets…
Afterwards, Amber knows she has been given an incredible power, but was it a freak accident, or was there something she was supposed to do with it? Controlling her new ability might be the hardest thing Amber has ever done. Especially when she is running for her life. Who is her mysterious enemy? What connection does he have to Amber’s past? And, most importantly, does Amber have what it takes to truly become . . . Skydragon?
Now, in this third adventure, Amber is tired of being hunted, and sick of being afraid. Maybe she can escape her destiny and live a normal life, like a normal girl. But two new villains are on the prowl, and when other people’s lives are on the line, will Amber hide … or will she rise?
This is an intriguing series aimed at those newly independent readers who are discovering the worlds to which their new skills can take them but who still need a little support with shorter chapters and some illustrations. Anh Do is arguably one of the most popular authors for this age group at this time and he knows how to come up with something original, appealing and pitch it at just the right level. This is perfect for those who are at the top end of the readership for this blog and also for those who are a little older and who are still developing their skills because to be reading something by Anh Do, a favourite of their peers, is a huge boost to their self-esteem and self-belief. They can be a reader and they can belong.