This book has it all, action, adventure, tragedy, and a little bit of romance. The book grabs you from the very beginning and never let's go. It follows the story of boy in his early teens (15 or 16) that is a cabin boy on an airship. While the boy, Matt, is on watch duty he spots a hot air balloon that's been damaged and they proceed to give assistance. There is an old man in the balloon, it's only occupant, and he is badly injured. Before he dies he tells young Matt about a beautiful flying creature that no one has ever seen before. But his ranting and raving are passed of as the words of a confused dieing man. Then a year later Matt meets the old mans granddaughter who's is hell bent on proving her grandfather actually did see a real creature. And thus begins a thrill ride of an adventure that you won't want to put down until you reach the last page.
My thoughts on the book:
I finished this book a little over 2 days while I was on vacation. The characters are very well written, you get a good sense of who they are and become very attached to the few leading characters. The two main characters are Matt Cruse and Kate de Vries. Matt is a level headed young man who thinks everything through and does it quickly and doesn't hesitate to act when he thinks it's needed. He is very adapt on the air ship, and because he has spent so much time on them he know what everything does as well as every inch of them.
Kate on the other hand is a strong willed young woman who doesn't let anything get in the way of her goal, and this gets her into trouble, as well as Matt, throughout the book. Kate is definitely not your average female who is helpless, she is very well studied and reads a lot of books and is very knowledgeable about things Matt has never dreamed of knowing about. That being said she does relay on him for some of the more practical things such as how to find there way back when they go traipsing through the jungle.
All in all I really enjoyed this book it reminded me of some of the Jules Vern books I have read. Very fun and enjoyable read.