Dragonfly Pool Book Review

Our last family book club was The Dragonfly Pool by Eva Ibbotson. I normally post our book club meetings at Dragonfly Pool book reviewArizona Mama, but the kiddo in charge chose to mostly talk about the book instead of activities that tie into the book. Talking about a book is basically a book review!

At first Tally doesn’t want to go to the boarding school called Delderton. But soon she discovers that it’s a wonderful place, where freedom and self-expression are valued. Enamored of Bergania, a serene and peaceful country led by a noble king, Tally organizes a dance troupe to attend the international folk dancing festival there. There she meets Karil, the crown prince, who wants nothing more than ordinary friends. But when Karil’s father is assassinated, it’s up to Tally and her friends to help Karil escape the Nazis and the bleak future he’s inherited. {Amazon}

When I was reading Mission Possible, my daughter suggested I annotate as I read. Soon my book was colorful with little sticky tabs sticking out every few pages. Now she teases me because I do it to all the books I read, even middle grade fiction. I only had one sticky note though – I wasn’t sure in Bergania was a real country. (The kids said no as they laughed at me.)

We talked about our favorite parts of the book, the funniest parts of the book (there are several) and our favorite characters. To avoid spoilers, I won’t share those. We also discussed the title. What do dragonflies have to do with a World War II story? My kiddos didn’t think the title was a good portrayal of the book, but they couldn’t come up with anything else either.

Even though this is a middle grade book and the main character, Tally, is only 11 years old, it too young for us not middle graders to enjoy. Tally’s enthusiasm and good-natured view of the world are refreshing, and her desire to help and see the best in people mature in the best possible way. The Dragonfly Pool made me laugh and inspired me to remember that with a handful (or two) of determination anything is possible. I give if four slices.

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