THE BOOK OF DRAGONS by E. Nesbit and illustrated by H.R. Millar (Random House Children’s Books 2010)

October 19, 2009 at 10:23 pm Leave a comment

dragonsOver 100 years ago Edith Nesbit wrote children’s books in England that include this one about dragons. You may wonder whether 21st century children will enjoy listening to or reading this old book. In my mind, these eight stories would work best when adults read to children.  English money, nannies, royalty, Guy Fawkes, Parliament and other place and time details can be quickly explained. The fanciful aspects, on the other hand, require no explications. None of the dragons in these tales are overly frightening, but all require careful handling by clever children.  Not only do the children manage to rid the world of insatiable armor-clad creatures, they do so by doing good. The children outwit the adults and win the friendships of helpful creatures by acting compassionately. Negative qualities, such as male gender preference, school routines, officious government leaders, pride, and caning come in for some rough drubbing by Nesbit. Although the world never seems to run out of dragons, every story in this collection has a happy ending.

J Fiction (Fantasy).  Recommended- Lillian Hecker (Pelham)

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