Dragon of the Red Dawn (Magic Tree House #37): 05/17/10
Sean and I left off with the series at High Tide in Hawaii (#28). My son picked up Dragon of the Red Dawn because of the dragon on the cover. The Magic Tree House books build on each other and a lot has happened between those ten books.
The Dragon of the Red Dawn is a Merlin mystery. In the books we read, Merlin was a minor character. Now he's a recurring character and he's troubled. He's not eating and sleeping. Morgan needs help to cheer him up. Tim (the ex-dog) is also there to advise to the siblings and he has given them a wand to help them in their time of need.
Despite our initial confusion, once Jack and Annie leave for Edo (now Tokyo) to find the secret of happiness, Sean and I were in love with the book. Sean has been studying haiku in school so it was fun for him (and me) to see Jack and Annie meeting Matsuo Basho the poet who is known as a master of the haiku.
Besides Basho's poetry, the book includes a Japanese water spirit dragon. Sean is also learning about Chinese dragons at school and the dragon who comes to the rescue here is very much like Jin Jin by Grace Chang. It was fun to see Sean's face light up as he recognized the dragon and knew how it would be able to help.
After we had finished reading Dragon of the Red Dawn Sean asked me to check out a book of Basho's poetry. Fortunately our library was able to oblige his request without even needing a hold. We checked out The Essential Basho (review coming). Any book that inspires further reading or research gets top a rating.
Other Magic Tree House books reviewed here: