By Stephanie Brockway
Illustrated by Ralph Masiello
Publication date July 1, 2011 by Charlesbridge Publishing (pre-release copy reviewed)
137 pages – Age 9-12
13 year-old Abigail Thaddeus didn’t fit into any groups at school. She wasn’t a jock, band geek, or bully. She wasn’t even a nerd and definitely not a Britney (the very popular cool girls who think they’re really pretty). Her life living with her over-protective grandfather and kooky grandmother was kind of boring. She would have felt like a total looser if it weren’t for her one friend, Charley. One day her life changed when she gets a mysterious letter from someone who claims that he is her “devoted friend”. The letter challenges her to learn all she can about mythical beasts (like gryphons, phoenixes and mermaids). With the help of Charlie she begins to research and discover all she can about every mythological beast she can think of but she has to do it without anyone discovering what she and Charley are up to.
I thought this book was cool from the moment I got it. The book is Abigail’s “scrapbook” of her findings, pictures, research notes and kind of a diary too. The pages are formatted in a really neat way that keeps you wanting to read the next note or entry. The pages are colorful and the illustrations are cool. You have to see them to really get the idea.