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    Review of THE HAND OF DINOTOPIA by Alan Dean Foster


    Avon Books, 2003

    When he learns that his fiancee has gone missing on an expedition, Will Denison, an inhabitant of Dinotopia originally from the human-controlled outside world, decides he has no choice. He's got to find Silvia, rescue her if she needs rescuing, and assure himself of her safety. With the help of a protoceratops/translator, Will sets off. But Silvia's path leads into the great desert where no one goes. Ignoring common sense and the advice of the protoceratops, Will plunges on, leading to great discoveries, and even greater danger. Silvia is pursuing a legend--a legend that just might lead to the greatest discovery in Dinotopia history--or to the destruction of the unique dinosaur/human civilization.

    Dinotopia is Janes Gurney's engaging world where intelligent dinosaurs coexist, mostly peacefully with humans. Author Alan Dean Foster (see more reviews of novels by Foster) obviously enjoys descriptions of the interaction, the strange ways that dinosaurs and humans can assist one another, and the utopian society that the dinosaurs allow the humans to share with them.

    With its simplistic and young protagonists and straightforward plot, THE HAND OF DINOTOPIA will appeal most to young readers. By setting the novel in the Victorian age of exploration, Foster/Gurney also create a fond homage to the classic adventure tales of Edgar Rice Burroughs and H. Rider Hagger. Gurney's fine drawings of dinosaurs adds to the appeal.

    Two Stars

    Reviewed 3/28/03

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