The world could use more dragon-hunters, especially when they don’t actually slay the dragons but just figure out what they need most in the world.
That’s what happens in author Judith L. Roth’s enchanting new picture book, Goodnight, Dragons. In it, a young dragon-taming hero (who shall remain nameless…mostly because his name is never mentioned) explains that there are dragons in a nearby forest. How does he know? Because he fell asleep under a cozy tree and dreamed about them, that’s how.
In his dream, the dragon-taming hero ties on his cape, gathers his tools and prepares for a fire-breathing, tree-climbing, heart-pounding encounter with those pesky dragons. It’s a dangerous mission, and his forest animal friends can only peek in awe from behind the forest trees and wish him the best. But fear is not an option for this hero; he ignores the roar that spooks his horse; pretends he doesn’t smell that “burnt toast smell” seeping through the trees, and climbs up into the trees to meet those dragons face-to-face.
You see, he’s been doing some thinking, and has concluded that everyone needs a cuddle–and dragons probably need it more than most. So, armed with his trusty cuddles and a little something to soothe the dragons’ fiery stomachs, the boy-hero calls those dragons, and they swoop down from the sky and, and…well, you’ll have to read the book to find out what they do. But there’s no shortage of courage or fire, I’ll tell you that!
Goodnight Dragons is an absolutely adorable “boy book.” As the mother of two rambunctious, adventure-seeking sons (adults now, but boy do I remember the days) I can tell you that this one has everything a growing boy needs to get him through his day. Almost sounds like I’m talking about food, doesn’t it? Well I am, in a way; I’m talking about food for the imagination.
Artist Pascal Lemaitre uses a dense and lush forest as the ultimate location for a dragon-hunting adventure. He sprinkles the book – and even the dragons – with soft pastel colors that serve to relax young readers into a sense of familiarity and well-being. And he uses a deep purple sky with a nice starry background to finally lull young readers into a restful sleep.
For the ultimate in “boy books” for lap time, be sure to grab a copy of Goodnight, Dragons. 5 STARS for this dragon-tamer!
Best wishes and happy dragon-hunting,
PICTURE BOOK DEPOT