Title: Secret of the Sirens
Author: Julia Golding
Connie Lionheart has always had a hard time fitting in due to her relationship with animals. Sooner or later, some creature will do something that gets her into trouble. But when she moves in with her aunt, she learns she may have a greater gift than she suspected. Her aunt is a member of a Society dedicated to protecting mythological creatures, and right now the local sirens are angry about the new oil company who’s setting up in their harbor . . .
I liked several things in this book. Although Connie’s bond with all creatures can feel a little overpowered, it also allows her to get to know several of them rather deeply. I liked the sirens and the rock dwarfs for being different, and I also had fun with the dragons. Additionally, the fact that Connie has enemies both mundane and mythical keeps the story from bogging down in a “humanity is evil” kind of plot.
Downsides were mostly minor. I just shrugged that an oil company was painted as the villains yet again; there’s at least more dimension to the mythical evil, though not much at present. And it bugged me that Connie immediately pegs Colin as cool mostly because of his clothing and is just as quick to stereotype geeks away (I don’t discount that it’s a valid reaction for someone her age, just that it was annoying that such surface evaluations go unchallenged).
Overall I enjoyed the read, and will be hunting down the sequels shortly. I rate this book Recommended.