It’s almost time for bed but Olive, Barney and Ella aren’t ready just yet. They want to go on one last adventure before they fall asleep! Olive wants to go to the jungle, whilst Barney wants to head out in search of treasure. And Ella? Well she would secretly really like to see a dragon.
The three friends hop in to a giant hot air balloon which has magically appeared outside their window and then whoooosh, they’re off!
Their first stop is a pirate ship which they eagerly explore, but their time is cut short when the crew decide they don’t want to share their treasure. Next they float down in to the jungle but a hungry tiger makes them a little nervous about staying. This adventure really isn’t working out as planned and poor Ella still hasn’t see a dragon!
In Huffenpuffen Valley, dragons and humans live peacefully side by side. The dragons are very well-liked because they are really useful companions – in the winter they light bonfires and fireworks, and in the summer they help with campfires and roast corn on the cob with their flames!
But there’s one dragon who is a little bit different. Jasper breathes water instead of fire! He tries his absolute hardest to assist the people in the valley but the jets of water he sprays just leave them cold, wet and unhappy. Poor Jasper decides that the best thing to do is leave the people alone and just be by himself.
Then one day a fire breaks out at a nearby house and Jasper realises he can help. He swoops down and sprays his water through the windows and over the roof and soon the fire is distinguished. Jasper has saved the day! He may not be able to breathe fire but it turns out he has a very bright future ahead of him as a firefighter.
A few weeks ago a lovely lady called Helen dropped me a message to recommend us a book which her son had picked out at the library – The Knight Who Wouldn’t Fight. It wasn’t one that i’d heard of so I want to give a big shout out to her to say thank you as we LOVE it! (It should be noted here that this is definitely a different Helen to the one who wrote the book!)
The story is about a little mouse called Leo who likes nothing more than to curl up with a good book. However Leo is a knight so, despite his protestations, his parents insist that he has to go out in to the world and fight dragons.
Leo packs a bag with some sandwiches (and lots of books of course!) and heads off on his horse to fight a dragon who has been terrorising a town a few hours ride away. En route he faces a fearsome griffin and an angry troll, but defeats them quickly and easily using not his sword but his collection of books. It turns out that nasty creatures can be quite vain and love to hear stories about themselves!
The combination of dragons and girl power make this one of our favourite collaborations between Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.
Zog is a big orange dragon who loves going to Dragon School. He’s really enthusiastic about his classes but he just can’t quite get things right. He bumps in to trees whilst learning to fly, gives himself a sore throat trying to roar and accidentally sets his wing on fire whilst attempting to breathe fire. Fortunately each time he hurts himself a little girl appears with a bag of bandages and plasters and she fixed him right up.
When he gets to Year 4 the dragons have to learn how to capture a princess. Again Zog struggles until he discovers that his wonderful friend is in fact a princess herself. She allows herself to be captured in order to help him out and Zog gets a golden star from the teacher. She becomes a valuable member of the school, tending to the dragon’s ailments with the help of her trusty medical bag.
I think representation is SO important in children’s books so when I spotted this LGBT-friendly book I knew we had to add it to our library.
Prince & Knight is a beautiful fairy tale set in a magical world of castles and dragons which has a wonderfully diverse twist. The prince of the realm has come of age so his parents set about trying to help him find a bride. He meets many, many ladies but none of them catch his eye. He’s looking for something different but he just doesn’t know what that is.
Whilst they are on their travels, the kingdom is attacked by a mighty dragon and it seems like all may be lost. The brave Prince rides off on his horse and soon come face to face with the fire-breathing monster – but it seems that he will not have to fight this battle alone. A magnificent Knight appears and they work together to bring the evil dragon down.
I naturally gravitate towards stories with strong female characters and this quirky book turns the usual princess/knight dynamic upside down.
The kingdom is plagued by dragons and appears to be in need of a brave knight to solve the problem.
An enterprising young knight appears and the queen tells him that if he can get rid of the dragons then he may have her daughter’s hand in marriage.
The knight is horrified saying he’s heard disgusting things about how stinky and mean the princess is and he wouldn’t marry her in a million years.
The queen is angered and tells the nearest dragon that he will just have to marry her instead. Terrified at the prospect of marrying this horrible-sounding princess the dragon quickly flies far away.
The dragon problem is solved but what about a husband for the princess? Hmm. Hang on. Let’s take another look at that knight. Is it possible he’s a she? And is it possible she’s not a knight at all?
A fab, funny story about a very smart mother/daughter duo. Recommended!
Buy it now: http://amzn.to/2I8H11I
As Halloween approaches it only seems right to draw attention to this absolute classic from Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.
A friendly witch flies on her broomstick on a windy day but the wind keeps blowing away her witchy essentials, including her hat and her wand.
Each time she lands to hunt them down a clever animal helps her and then joins her on her broom. She’s soon travelling with a veritable menagerie but then the broom snaps in two and they all tumble to the ground and land in the path of a hungry dragon. How will they ever escape?