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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

My review of The Dragon and the Turtle by Donita K. Paul

About the book:

Friends come in all sizes, shapes, and colors. Sometimes they’re even dragons.

Roger loves adventure. Today he’s playing pirate, sailing the high seas, dancing to the hornpipe, and catching fish. But the wind’s blown him off course and he’s . . . well . . . lost.

When Padraig, a kitten-sized, bug-eating dragon, encounters the lost turtle, he offers to help Roger find his way home. Roger’s directions take some time to follow—his house looks brown, sounds like singing, smells like baking, feels like sand, and tastes like strawberries—and along the way, Roger and Padraig become friends. And friendship always yields unexpected rewards. Like cookies.

My review:

This is a cute children's book. I enjoyed the friendship theme and how the dragon, Padraig, stuck with the turtle, Roger, and continued to help him until he found his way back home. I can see children enjoying this book because of the adventure and sensory input like the crunchy bugs Padraig was eating. The facial expressions the dragon makes are just precious. The fact that the turtle is lost will touch heartstrings, and his friend's effort to help him is quite touching. Because the way the turtle describes his home keeps building in the details, the mystery needing to be solved also builds from a suspense-like drive to find answers. I can easily see a child turning the pages to find out what happens next.

The illustrations are beautiful and eye-catching and I can see this book becoming a child's favorite request, like a "read this to me over and over" type story. I would have enjoyed this story for the pictures alone when I was reading a lot of children's books in elementary school. Plus, there are great discussion questions at the end that will inspire talks between parents and their children, Sunday School teachers, and the story include a bible verse. There is a bonus recipe for chocolate chip cookies for moms at the end.

The Dragon and the Turtle was published by Waterbrook Press and released in 2010.

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