Devils in Danger

Reviewed By  Grasshopper2       August 20, 2021


Author  Samantha Wheeler

Distributor:      UQP
ISBN:                 9780702263293
Publisher:         University of Queensland Press (UQP)
Release Date:   August 2021  


The idea of writing a children’s novel around the theme of protecting our wildlife is an excellent one. The story by itself is interesting, current, and appealing. Add to that, a Tasmanian Devil and the interest level rises.

Killarney is a young girl in grade five, who hasn’t been motivated by school learning. One night at home with her parents she hears a terrible scream. She and her mother are shocked and grab a torch to go out and discover who has been injured. They search around the garden until they realise the noise has come from underneath their house. When they shine the torch there, they see a pair of red eyes.

Later while walking the dog, the young girl meets a woman who seems very serious and reminds her to keep the dog on the lead. As they get talking, Killarney discovers that the woman is a Zoologist who is researching Tasmanian Devils and trying to protect them. The Scientist is very interested in the story of the red eyes under Killarney’s house and asks permission to come and check the animal out.

The scientific procedures that are carried out are interesting. The fact that the Devil is denning, (preparing to give birth) is very exciting for the whole family. For a young girl who has been rather aimless, Killarney is now a passionate supporter of the Tasmanian Devil project and comes up with creative ways to support the welfare of these Australian animals. She also makes certain that her school becomes aware of their plight. Now she needs to make sure her whole town is informed.

Devils in Danger from Samantha Wheeler is a truly motivating novel.