Sunday, March 28, 2010

Summer of the Sea Serpent: Merlin Mission #31 Mary Pope Osborne

Summer of the Sea Serpent: Merlin Mission #31

For a little while now we haven’t read any Magic Tree House books, but last week my son brought this one home from the library at his school and this week he brought home another one so I guess he is ready to read more of them! I’m glad because this is a series I can really get into and that I enjoy with them, more so than some of the other chapter books they’ve self selected at library. If you are unfamiliar with the characters there is a prologue to help you jump in, but basically Jack and Annie are a brother and sister from Frog Creek Pennsylvania who find a magical tree house in the woods by their house. They find that they can wish to go places from books that are in the tree and in each place they learn something or go on a mission for either Morgan Le Fee or Merlin to find or help someone. We read the first 24 books in order but have skipped around through the rest, but that doesn’t seem to bother my children at all and it is easy to find where they are as each book is separate from the others. I would be more inclined to read them in order but that may just be my grown up sense of order!

In this book they go to a time before Camelot to save the Sword of Light so Arthur can later use it. They encounter a sea knight (a knight who rides a half horse/half water animal), selkies (people who are people on land and put on seal skins to be seals in the sea), a sea serpent and a spider queen. Using a riddle written by Merlin they navigate their way through this fantasy place to retrieve the sword for Merlin. They get the chance to become selkies and fight a sea serpent. This really held my children’s attention and was really well paced. I recommend this series to just about everyone, I've used it since I taught first and second grade. I look forward to finishing our book for this week as well. Check it out if you have kids!

Product Details

Pub. Date: March 2004
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Format: Hardcover, 128pp
Age Range: 6 to 9
Series: Magic Tree House Series, #31
ISBN-13: 9780375827358
ISBN: 0375827358


Jack and Annie are off on another mythical mission at the request of Merlin the magician. Luckily, they have a young sorcerer, Teddy, to help them. From underwater caves to a Spider Queen, from mystical selkies to a magical sword, this is a Magic Tree House adventure kids won’t want to miss!


  1. I used to love reading these with my kids when they were younger. Now they're 15 and 18, so you can tell it's been a few years, but I actually miss reading the series. We have up to #26 (Good Morning, Gorillas) on the shelf in the old nursery with some of their other favorite series. We would always buy them the day they came out so we could read them right away. And we had to buy them because they got read many times.

  2. I love books like these and hope to some day have little ones around to read them too.

  3. We bought all the beginning ones, but lately we have some holes in our collection. I look for them on ebay but then end up with extras that we have shared with our local school, friends or resold on ebay in lots.