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The Mystery of Ireland’s Eye

by Shane Peacock

When Dylan is 11, he is seized by an unexplained passion to accompany his parents on a sea kayaking trip to Ireland’s Eye, an abandoned island in Trinity Bay, Newfoundland. Over the next year, Dylan acts more mature, takes swimming lessons, and improves his kayaking so he can pursue this dream. But, while getting off the ferry in Newfoundland, an old man warns Dylan to stay away from Ireland’s Eye. Dylan is spooked, and even the beauty of the trip cannot erase his fears. On Ireland’s Eye, strange things happen until Dylan’s parents are captured by a gang of bank robbers led by the old man. Dylan must rescue his parents or die.

When the bank robbers come out of the woodwork, there are some moments of high drama, but this book fails to come together on many levels. The plot is highly improbable. Even if Newfoundland could support a gang of bank robbers, it’s ridiculous to suppose they would hide money in a location that’s both inaccessible and conspicuous. Dylan’s sustained resolve to improve himself is unrealistic for his age and his first-person narrative voice often sounds more like an adult author than a 12-year-old boy. The psychological themes are extremely confused. While recovering from his grandfather’s death, Dylan thinks about old hockey players they discussed. At the same time, there is a supernatural thread to his obsession with Ireland’s Eye. Many supposedly supernatural events were staged by the bank robbers, but Dylan also encounters a real ghost. This event is never fully integrated with the other psychological themes and the resulting muddle will leave readers perplexed.


Reviewer: Janet McNaughton

Publisher: Viking Canada


Price: $22

Page Count: 179 pp

Format: Cloth

ISBN: 0-670-885-41-X

Released: Aug.

Issue Date: 1999-10

Categories: Children and YA Non-fiction

Age Range: ages 8–12