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DINOSAUR HUNTER by Elaine Marie Alphin


by Elaine Marie Alphin, illustrated by Don Bolognese

Age Range: 6 - 8

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2003
ISBN: 0-06-028303-3
Publisher: HarperCollins

Wyoming in the 1880s is the setting for this transitional early chapter book, based partially on historic characters who searched the West for dinosaur fossils. The main characters are Ned, who works on his father’s ranch and dreams of finding real dinosaur bones, and George, the son of a fossil hunter who works for a paleontologist. Ned succeeds in finding a triceratops skeleton, and he keeps his cool when an unscrupulous rival fossil hunter tries to swindle him out of his fossils for a single silver dollar. The plotline is simple, and the story is heavy on dialogue, but the combination of dinosaur fossils, horseback riding, and ranch life is unusual and will interest boys especially. Bolognese adds to the effort with attractive watercolors with heavy ink outlines. He handles both the horses and people with flair, especially in illustrations of the two boys with their respective fathers, skillfully showing the family resemblance. (author’s note) (Easy reader. 6-8)