“Nine-year-old blond Matica lives in a remote little village on a dry plateau in the Andes of Peru. She moved here with her Australian missionary and schoolteacher parents when she was five years old. Ever since she could remember she faced cruel rejection because of her growth handicap. She is trapped in a body the size of a two year old. Because of that the local Indians wouldn’t accept her into their community or allow her to play with their children. Under the watchful eyes of her parents who understand her, lonely Matica explores the plateau for entertainment.
With patience and a sense of adventure she befriended a pair of condors and named them Tamo and Tima. A strong bond and love developed between them.
Having an egg, Tamo and Tima try to fight off a couple of poachers but they succeed in stealing their egg from its ledge. Eventually Tamo drives them away but the poachers leave the egg between some boulders on the plateau. Being unable to bring it back to the ledge, Tamo and Time make it clear to Matica to take care of the egg, so she does.
Exactly on Matica’s tenth birthday, the condor fledgling ‘Talon’ hatches. The book then describes in detail how Matica helps Talon grow into the majestic bird he was meant to be.
Two months after confidently flying, the most unbelievably amazing thing happens. What Matica had dreamed of ever since she first befriended the condors, actually unfolds. That changes her life so completely that she can now see a positive side to her handicap. The Indians then fully accept the new Matica into their community.
This is the beginning of a time of incredible adventures with Talon and Matica, which is carried on in subsequent Talon books.” - http://www.writersportal.org/Gigi
A fast-paced, sweet story, I was pleased to delve in to something so easy to read. The short, numerous chapters aided in making this such a breeze.
The information about Peru and the condors makes it clear that Gisela did quite a bit of research before beginning this story, which is fantastic. This is quite a remarkable way to educate young adults and children about this majestic and endangered bird species, and the country they live in. In my honest opinion, there needs to be more books of this nature to keep education interesting, especially in the technology-addicted society of today. This is a book I’m highly considering buying for when my own daughter is a couple years older.
The emotions during this story are clear in every word, and it brought tears to my eyes a few times. As Matica is finally accepted by the village, she is finally able to really spread her own metaphorical wings, and shows children that with the right determination, anyone can achieve anything.
Gisela paints a wonderful word picture, and as the condor chick, Talon, hatches and grows, I felt every drop of joy and nerves that Matica felt. This may be aimed at young adults and children, but it is an enjoyable read regardless of age. This is a definate “claws” up!