Thirteen year old Stephanie (Stevie) loses her parents in a terrible accident, leaving her lame. Stevie’s dreams of running for Scotland are over. No longer able to cope with Stevie’s moods, Gran sends her to an aunt on a Scottish island.
Although Stevie gradually makes new friends and discovers an interest in the bird sanctuary, she soon falls into danger from two bird poachers intent on harming the eagles. A strange boy in the hills helps Stevie. But what does he have to do with the eagles, or the painted rocks and legends of the island?
As the boy watched, he knew those two were trouble. He understood people, with an
unfailing instinct for their character. Even from this distance, he suspected they came for only one purpose. One that could mean danger for his kind. He’d need to keep a close watch on them.
Then his attention shifted to a girl and an old woman who stepped from the gangway.
Something in the way the girl dragged along, almost behind the woman, suggested deep unhappiness. One leg seemed slightly shorter than the other, emphasised in the way she limped.
The old woman looked kind but worried. She stopped now and then to speak to the girl, who only shrugged.
Her behaviour peaked his interested despite himself. There seemed so much sadness between them. He wondered what caused it.
As the two arguing men walked toward the bus, he noticed the younger one turn and wave to the girl. She stared right through him before walking closer to the old woman. Someone met the females. Another woman—older than the girl, younger than the other.
He thought about the drama now beginning, when these people stepped on to the island. It would unfold over these next weeks and he would be a part of it. He was ready. A movement in the air above caught his eye and he smiled. Turning his back on the people below, he raised his arms and called out a greeting to the eagles swooping toward him.
The main character, Stevie is sent to a Scottish island and the setting is inspired by all my visits to Millport on the Isle of Cumbrae. Anyone who has been there will have noticed the painted rocks, like the famous Crocodile Rock on the shore.
Another unusual rock formation is Lion Rock, and you can read the local legend about that in Summer of the Eagles!
The painted Eagle Rock in the story is from my imagination, but you should be able to picture it from the description in the book (hopefully).
Here’s the first fun quiz!
How many types of eagle can you name? There’s no definite answer so just try and think of as many as you can.
Then you can try this quiz, to see what kind of bird you are! I was delighted to find that I’m an eagle since that’s my favourite.