Eye of Zoltar by Jasper Fforde

Last Dragonslayer book 3

A review by Nalini Haynes
  • Publisher: H&S (Hachette)
  • ISBN: 9781444707281
  • 304 PAGES
  • Rating: ★★★★☆  4/5

Jennifer Strange is a teenage orphan indentured to Kazam, a magical collective of less-than-competent magicians in the Ununited Kingdoms. Although only 16 years old, Jennifer is running Kazam with the help of Tiger (another orphan) and Perkins (an 18 year old recently licensed magician) while looking after a dangerous Quarkbeast, a fire-breathing teenage dragon and a gaggle of semi-useless adults.

The malevolent Mighty Shandar threatens to kill Colin and Feldspar, the two teenage dragons who have become part of the Kazam contingent. To save the dragons, Jennifer must go on a search for the Eye of Zoltar, a large gem formerly owned by the evil wizard Zoltar. It’s not a quest: a quest would be too expensive plus Jennifer doesn’t want the red tape involved in questing.

The Eye of Zoltar is part Hitchhikers Guide, part Monty Python for minors, with lots of pop culture and literature humour. Although Fforde usually writes for adults, the Last Dragonslayer series is eminently suited for a younger audience. I highly recommend the Eye of Zoltar for children from primary school through to high school and adults who enjoy books for a younger audience.

I find a good children’s book – especially a humorous children’s book like the Eye of Zoltar – to be a refreshing change, energising me for more reading and reviewing.