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In this fifth book in "The MacGregor Family Adventure Series," Dr. Mavis MacGregor researches the feathered dinosaur while Dr. Jack MacGregor participates in an environmental conference concerning the world's largest dam project, the Three Gorges Dam. Their children, Chris, Heather, and R.O., and Chris's girlfriend, Natalie, explore the Wolong Panda Reserve, where they discover a link between animal exports, the illegal dinosaur bone trade, and corrupt Chinese officials. Kayaking in the Tibetan Highlands on a Class IV river and fighting panda poachers are just some of the dangerous adventures in which the MacGregors find themselves--including a situation that only the British Secret Service can resolve!
"The MacGregor Family Adventure Series" has received praise from School Library Journal for featuring "a strong family unit with realistic sibling rivalry and respect for parents." Reviewers, teachers, librarians, and young readers have praised the series' sensitivity to other cultures and its balanced view of environmental issues as well as the research and attention to detail regarding foreign landscapes, technology, and sociopolitical issues. Thus, the series is an excellent supplement to science, social studies, and geography curriculums. The series has also been used to encourage reluctant readers because of Trout's fast-paced writing and his signature inclusion of scenes about outdoor adventure sports like scuba diving, whitewater rafting, and rock climbing as well as refreshingly realistic teenage dialogue. For all these reasons, "The MacGregor Family Adventure Series" attracts a wide audience. Each book can be read separately without confusion, but as School Library Journal says, "references made will encourage readers to seek out the other books."
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