My daughter Gina is here today with a review of GHOST DOG OF ROANOKE ISLAND, which she received for review from the author, C. K. Volnek.
The Ghost Dog of Roanoke Island is about a boy named Jack who lives on present day Roanoke Island with his dad. Rumor is there is a horrible monster that’s been running around. And Jack’s found it. The monster would’ve killed him except for a strange dog coming and fending the monster off.
Jack meets a Native American named Manny who knows all about the monster. He calls it the Witiku and says it’s from ancient times when English colonists were arriving. This is the thing that destroyed the people of Roanoke Island. Manny says Jack must be the one to kill the Witiku but first, Manny shows him visions of the Witiku and how it was created. The dog is legendary too and has been fighting off the monster since it was created. Can Jack defeat the Witiku? Or will it finish off Roanoke Island for the second time?
I would recommend this book to people who like to read books about magic. Anyone who knows the history of Roanoke Island would appreciate how cleverly it is worked into the story. However, the initial change between no magic and the magical visions was confusing to me. Manny throws a piece of wood in the fire and then he and Jack appear somewhere else. Up to that point, I thought the story could have been realistic fiction. Other than that one point, I thought this was a great book and a creative solution to the Roanoke mystery!
Thanks, Gina! I just want to add that I teach the Roanoke mystery in history class every year to my fifth grade students (in fact, Gina was in my history class last year for this unit!), and this is one solution to the mystery I never covered!