My 10-year old nephew and I read books together every week and he draws a picture from the pages that captures his fancy. As a budding bookworm, artist and a child with an autistic aphasia we bond through stories and art.
The Dragon Hunters
The Dragon Brothers Trilogy #1
by James Russell
Ilustrated by Link Choi
Published April 4th 2017
by Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Flynn and Paddy live on an island with their mom and dad. When they witness a dragon snatch their dog, Coco and fly away the brothers determine to bring her home. They prepare the night before making sandwiches (not quite like mom’s) and packing needed supplies like rope.
I have the unique pleasure of sharing children’s books with my nephew. We love to read a book together after school and he picks out his favorite illustration to draw himself. He loves books with dragons so I knew he had to read this book…and he loved it! His favorite was the dragon by far so that is what he drew.
The first thing that struck me was that the story was written in verse. I thought it was a cute gimmick, though there were a lot of words on each page for it to all be in verse. Also my nephew struggled to understand what the boys were doing. The verse complicated talking about the story. Not all children will struggle like he did but I think it is something unusual that if the subject matter is one they enjoy will expose them to a different sort of writing and storytelling.
I’m a great lover of illustrations and many in this book were stellar. I adore the cover so much! I have to believe that the color adjustment in my ebook was not exactly true to the printed version, some spreads had really dark colors so much so you couldn’t see what was happening in them. The map is really cool and I like that there is an interactive map through a free app. My nephew adores digital interactions like this and that he gets to hear dragons, etc.
I really liked that their mother didn’t believe the boys that they saved Coco from a dragon. There is something heartwarming that speaks to childhood and imagination in forging adult-less with only your little brother (or big brother) at your side.
I was slightly disappointed in this book, the odd colors in a few of the illustrations and the oddly defining choice of using verse for the text. Yet there is something totally charming about this story that sparks the imagination. There are two more in the series and I think my nephew and I need to look them up!!
BOTTOM LINE: Dragons, my favorite!
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
“NetGalley delivers digital galleys, often called advance reading copies, or ARCs, to professional readers and helps promote new and upcoming titles. Professional readers–reviewers, media, journalists, bloggers, librarians, booksellers and educators–can join and use NetGalley at no cost.” Netgalley is a special section of my book discussions where I post reviews of the digital books I read through this service. It’s quite amazing the gems you can find. I’ve yet to regret reading a book, even if I don’t like it…