Race for the Dragon Heartstone

Holt. (Silver Batal: Bk. 2). Aug. 2020. 256p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781250181091.
Gr 4-7–With wicked Queen Imea’s trackers in hot pursuit, Silver and her dragon companion Hiyyan flee the deserts of Jaspaton and find themselves in the frozen wastelands, accompanied by her friend Mele, her mentor Nebekker, and their water dragons. When Hiyyan is poisoned by a Screw-Claw dragon’s attack, it becomes clear that the girl needs a dragon heartstone in order to heal him. Where to get such a heartstone is a mystery (Nebekker owns the only one ever heard of), so the companions begin a dangerous quest to find the Watchers, who supervise all the knowledge in the world. Of course, others, including Silver’s former hero, Sagittaria Wonder, still want to capture the threesome’s dragons, and it’s up to Silver to keep her crew, and their dragons, safe from predators both human and animal. Although there’s plenty of action, the second installment has a somewhat less frantic pace than the first one. While it lacks the excitement of the first book’s culminating race, this sequel makes up for it with a little more character development: Silver must make difficult choices that will change her life forever. While not a standalone novel, readers who enjoyed its predecessor will like this one as well.
VERDICT Purchase where the first book in the series is popular, or buy both if Tui T. Sutherland’s “Wings of Fire” series circulates briskly.

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