Review Blog

Aug 27 2014

Hero 41: Eye of the Gargoyle by Sam Penant

cover image

Orchard Books, 2014. ISBN 9781408328286.
(Age: 10-14) Recommended. When Dax Daley cut his tongue on an envelope and sent it off, he didn't realise how much his life would soon change. By licking the envelope he had submitted his DNA to the government and thus exposed himself to possessing the very rare Lomas Gene.
The combination of Dax having the Lomas Gene and also having parents who are quite happy to see the back of him for a while (along with a little financial compensation) means that Dax soon finds himself on the way to his new school, Scragmoor Prime. Scragmoor Prime is not the average suburban school for the average suburban kid.
Only 40 kids from around the country have been found to possess the Lomas Gene. That is until Dax turns up late one night. His unexpected arrival falls during the welcome dinner where 40 students are already feasting and excitedly wondering why they have been invited to this exclusive school. Thus we now have the 41st student and possible hero 41.
The adventure that ensues sees Dax make friends and enemies with his new peers. We meet the eccentric teachers and staff of Scragmoor Prime. Learn about the colourful past of the school buildings which happened to be a very nasty prison. Dax and his friends battle a Gargoyle hell bent on turning Dax into stone and have a lot of fun discovering the powers that the Lomas Gene can bring out in a person.
Hero 41: Eye of the Gargoyle is the first in the Dax Daley Series. It is a fun ride for younger readers from 10 - 14 with a few descriptions of past events that would prevent me reading it to readers any younger. The next book in the series, Hero 41 - The People in the Wall is already eagerly anticipated by a group of year 5 students that I have read Eye of the Gargoyle to.
Steve Whitehead

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