His father, Hugh, is running a flour mill powered by a waterfall coming out of the
Lake on the Mountain, a lake
on a plateau above the town.
It is late summer and John is conflicted about his imminent return to school in
. He enjoys
life both in the city and in his small home town. Kingston
While helping out at the mill there is still lots of time for John and his best friend, George Cloutier, a French Canadian boy to explore the mountain. John generally tolerates his 9 year old sister, Lou, joining them on their adventures. Her only regret in life appears to be that she is not a boy. His older sister, Molly, is more adult than child and uninterested in exploration.
Their quiet community is shaken when a local farmer disappears and his blood stained shirt is found on the edge of the lake. The anxiety level rises when there are reports of a lake monster. It sounds a lot like the Loch Ness monster with a big head and humps coming out of the water.
With John leading the way the young trio of John, George and Lou climb out on the branches of a huge twisted oak. They extend well into the lake. When the boys end up falling into the lake the creature appears in the lake. The terrified trio rush from the lake.
When the local constable also disappears the community is in an uproar over the missing men and the monster of the lake. Amidst the terror John does not panic and seeks a solution to the mysteries of the missing men and the lake.
Politics is already of interest to the young John. It is the time of the Family Compact, a group of elite families, who controlled
Canada West (now )
by overruling the legislature when they did not like decisions. Ontario
John is opposed to the Compact but, foreshadowing his adult life, does not believe in revolution to achieve democracy. He does not want the American model of revolution adopted in
to solve the challenges of dealing with an oligarchy. Canada
John is the acknowledged leader of himself, George and Lou. He is already demonstrating the determination and eloquence and intelligence that made him successful in politics. His cleverness in negotiating with a bully will bring a smile to the reader.
For my adult life my image of John has been of him as the “Grand Old Man” of Canadian politics who led the way in achieving confederation in 1867 founding
and was re-elected our Prime Minister a generation later. This book has caused
me to reflect on John as a young teenager. Few books look into the youth of the
famous of the world. Canada
I enjoyed the book. I thought the mystery in the first in the series, The Mystery of the MoonlightMurder, involving the young John Diefenbaker in
was a better mystery. The Legends of the
Lake on the Mountain made me want to read the next in the series which
involves a young contemporary Primer Minister, Paul Martin, who is still alive. Saskatchewan
I continue to hope all who love Canadian history encourage young adults to read the series. They learn of important issues in Canadian history and how they impacted the lives of young Canadians who happened to be our future leaders. (Nov. 21/12)
This book will be my 5th book in the 6th Canadian Book Challenge. I have reached the Double Double level. Each level is named for a Canadian food or drink. Continuing with my single question quiz related to each book in the series does any reader know what a Double Double is in