Posted in Picture Books

Not Your Typical Dragon by Dan Bar-el

15812147Not Your Typical Dragon
Dan Bar-el
Illustrated by Tim Bowers
2013 Viking
ISBN – 9780670014026
Genre – Picture Book
Age – Preschool
4 Stars


Crispin Blaze is dragon, and he is born into a proper dragon family. This means that on his seventh birthday he will begin to breathe fire! He dreamed of all the things he would do when he could, but his seventh birthday did not go as planned. When his parents put his birthday cake in front of him with seven unlit candles he blew real hard, but flames did not come out. Instead he breathed whipped cream. He went to the doctor, and got some medicine, but it did not work. Crispin, ashamed, decided to run away. On his journey he ran into a knight who is supposed to slay fire breathing dragons, but is terrible at this task. Fortunately Crispin does not breathe fire, and somehow the two become the most unlikely of friends.

One word: Adorable. Crispin is so cute, everyone will root for him. I personally would love to be his friend. The knight is also a stellar character. The illustrations are soft in color and in style, yet they are sure to make a big impression. They match the light hearted feeling of the text, and add the the hilarity of each situation. What I love about this book is that it is great for listener participation. Each time Crispin breathes something other than fire, you can ask the little ones to help you identify what is coming out of his mouth.  I also love the idea that two creatures that should be enemies put aside their differences to help each other and become friends. I won’t spoil the ending, but I will tell you it is happy and wonderful!


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