This is a tightly written novel with interesting characters such as Inkas, who is described as a “perky little bird” and he is a bit different. When one wing is up the other one goes down and this causes him to fly in a zig-zag manner. Inkas lives in a lush and green valley with behemoths such as Brontosaurs and Apatosaurs both of which are vegetarians.
This is an original story although it relies on established literary themes such as the “different” or “underdog” character helping out the rest when the chips are down and gaining respect from his peers. This will be good for children as they read this and they learn that they may be unique in a specific way but can make a difference in the lives of others.
Life is simple for Inkas, being a Ramferinkas, making his nest high atop a Potowanga Tree. He eats berries and cactus salad but his life changes when he takes on a new job, the important job of being the “Official Weather Bird”. This job covers the entire valley and it is Inkas’ job to let all the inhabitants know when the climate would be right for planting. Some of the dinosaurs believe Inkas is too young for the role or that, due to the awkward way he flys he will not be up to the job. In fact, Monty, a haughty Brontosaur, who is considered the brainiest of the vegetarians because of his two brains, expects a lot of Inkas and doesn’t cut him any slack.
Inkas proves his worth in this story. When he falls downward in one spot in the book, he dusts himself off and prepares to fly again. Inkas’ greatest challenge is Drake, a meat-eating mean-spirited Sphenodon, which attempts to trick Inkas into leading him to his vegetarian friends so that Drake and his pals might dine on some fresh meat. The author plays on words well, such as Drake telling Inkas he wants to “meat” his friends. Inkas is determined to warn his friends and to lead Drake on a wild-goose-chase or, in this case, a wild dinosaur chase.
This book features vivid characterizations such as Inkas, Spencer, Drake, Monty, and others and kids will delight in the determination of Inkas to save his friends. Along with the conflict of the meat eaters attempting to locate the vegetarian dinosaurs, the Blue Volcano, is a real threat to the community. This book contains moral themes such as watching out for one’s friends, going forward in life despite being considered “different”, and it is an imaginative story which kids and adults will enjoy. We commend the author for writing a story which focuses on characterization and moral motivations. We gladly award the novel five Doves, our best rating, and we heartily recommend it for all ages.