Avis and the Promise of Dragons

This tear was a different sort. As it fell from scales to the air it hardened and gleamed clear as ice, and formed into a diamond. Humbert hummed again but not a sad hum. This was the hum of a dragon that had just received a promise as unbreakable as diamond.

Avis has a dream to work with animals, so when a scientist with a witchy-looking house offers her a job as a pet-sitter she jumps at the chance. But it turns out Avis is not looking after pets at all – the animals in Dr Malinda Childes’ backyard are as eccentric as she is and Avis has to promise to keep them a secret.

But one promise and one secret leads to more promises and more secrets and before long Avis finds herself overwhelmed by promises and secrets and responsibilities and one very BIG chocolatey dragonish problem.

Written by Heather McQuillan


$25.00 incl. GST

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A Storylines Notable Book 2020


Best Friends Are Books ~ Avis and the Promise of Dragons is a magical adventure that you want to gobble down, like a dragon with a block of chocolate. Heather takes a story of a family who have fallen apart and throws a mischievous dragon into the mix. There is lots packed into the story, from family issues and bullying to conservation and the impact of the media. Avis’ Dad is a broken man after Avis’ Mum walked out on her family to start a new life with ex-All Black Aaron Miller. He takes little notice of what is happening with his kids, instead wallowing in his self-pity. Avis’ brother Bruno hides away in his room constantly, eating rubbish food and just generally being unpleasant. Avis is the only one in the family who is showing any responsibility, but she is also bearing the brunt of Drake the bully’s torment. The pet-sitting job for Dr Malinda gives her something positive in her life. The dragon coming in to her life helps to mend her family too.

Heather will make you wish you had a dragon all of your own. I really liked Heather’s take on the dragon myth and how her little dragon evolved. This dragon may love chocolate but but he’s certainly not sweet. Humbert is a wild creature who could burn you if you don’t keep your promises. He needs more food than just chocolate and will gobble up a dove or twenty when he’s hungry.

About the Kiwi author

Avis and the Call of the Kraken by Heather McQuillanHeather McQuillan used to be a teacher who wrote. Now she’s a writer who teaches. If she’s not writing in the room at the top of a spiral staircase, Heather can be found at Write On School for Young Writers in Christchurch, where she is a tutor and director. This is her fourth novel for young people. Heather loves being close to the ocean and hearing the waves but, on a still night, she is often disturbed by the thrumm thrumm thrumm of ships waiting outside the harbour.

Additional information

Dimensions19.8 × 12.8 cm
First published



Paperback edition



Page count


Published by

Ahoy! (an imprint of The Cuba Press)

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