It’s Monday, What are You Reading is a meme hosted by Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers (new host of Monday reading: Kathryn T at Book Date). Since two of our friends, Linda from Teacher Dance and Tara from A Teaching Life have been joining this meme for quite awhile now, we thought of joining this warm and inviting community.
I’m really excited about our new theme. I love reading about legendary beasts, especially dragons! In case you missed it, I featured two dragon-themed picture books from IMWAYR last week (Dragon Stories and Spellbinding Tales Around the World). I also shared picture book titles yesterday that feature dragons (Dragon Tales and Other Stories).
Today, I have four picture books about girls who have dragons for a friend! These are not the kind of dragons that fly above towns and burn houses to the ground. These dragons are friendlier than usual and our heroines love them dearly. I hope you do, too! Enjoy!
Written by Barbara Joosse
Illustrated by Randy Cecil
Published by Candlewick Press (2012)
Lovabye Dragon caught my attention the moment I saw it being displayed in the children’s department of our library. I love the cover featuring a little girl in a yellow dress and a blue dragon with a silly look on his face.
Lovabye Dragon tells the story of a girl who didn’t have a dragon for a friend and a dragon who dreamed of a girl for a friend. The two eventually find each other, thanks to the girl who cried many, many tears that trickled all the way to the dragon’s cave.
On the outside, Girl is little.
On the outside, Dragon’s biggle.
But they’re just the same size
exactly the same size
in the middle.
I enjoyed reading Barbara Joosse’s sweet rhymes and took great delight in Randy Cecil’s tender illustrations. It’s a feel-good picture book to share with the little ones. ♥♥♥♥♥
NOTE: If you live in Milwaukee, WI, then you might be interested to see a performance by First Stage in the new Lovabye Dragon musical in 2017! For more info, click here.
Written by Barabra Joosse
Illustrated by Randy Cecil
Published by Candlewick Press (2015)
Girl and Dragon are back in Evermore Dragon! This sequel to Lovabye Dragon created by Barbara Joosse and Randy Cecil follows a brand new adventure of Girl and Dragon. Ever since they found each other, Girl and Dragon are inseparable. In this book, Girl and Dragon decide to play hide-and-seek.
Dragon found a little rock
such a very little rock
and he curled his Dragon self
his Drag-enormo self
into a dragon ball,
which wasn’t — no, it wasn’t — small at all!
I love how Girl played along with Dragon and pretended she did not see him behind the tiny rock. When it was Girl’s turn to hide, she went to a faraway place, such a hidey-hole place. Will Dragon find her?
Like Lovabye Dragon, Evermore Dragon does not disappoint. The sequel is as endearing as the first book. Both books would make great Christmas presents for children! ♥♥♥♥♥
Written by Michelle Knudsen
Illustrated by Andréa Wesson
Published by Candlewick Press (2011)
In Argus, a girl named Sally and her class were doing a science project. Their teacher, Mrs. Henshaw, handed out eggs to the students. Each student was assigned an incubator where they could keep their eggs warm until the eggs hatch. Sally thought her egg looked different from the others but Mrs. Henshaw assured Sally that some eggs just look different.
When Sally’s egg cracks, something other than a yellow chick emerged. It was green. And scaly. And it had big yellow eyes. Sally still thought her chick looked different, and the other children in Sally’s class couldn’t help but say, Ewww. Once again, Mrs. Henshaw reminded everyone that some chicks just look different, that’s all.
Readers would know, of course, that Argus is not a chick. Argus is a dragon! And while Argus enjoyed doing his own things, he sure got into a lot of trouble! When Argus went missing, Sally thought it would be the end of her problems! However, Sally would soon realize that she felt neither happy nor relieved! Will she find Argus?
Unlike the first two books I shared above, Argus is meant for older children. However, the humor and fun illustrations in the book could be enjoyed by kids of all ages. This is a beautiful picture book on friendship, with an underlying theme of diversity and accepting others who may look different from you. ♥♥♥♥
Check out this other picture book by Michelle Knudsen and Matt Phelan:
Julia’s House for Lost Creatures
Written and illustrated by Ben Hatke
Published by First Second (2014)
When I first saw this book, the first thing that came to mind was Hayao Miyazaki’s Howl’s Moving Castle. So fun! Ben Hatke, known for his beloved graphic novel series featuring Zita the Spacegirl, weaves a short but magical (and heartwarming!) tale in Julia’s House for Lost Creatures. The story follows a girl named Julia who decided to settle by the sea.
Julia’s house sat on a giant turtle’s shell. When Julia found the perfect spot by the sea, the turtle burrowed itself in the ground, revealing only part of its shell and Julia’s quaint house. The house had been too quiet lately that Julia came up with a brilliant idea: she made a sign that invited lost creatures who needed a home!
Julia did not have to wait for long. Lost creatures from all places knocked on Julia’s door and Julia gladly welcomed them in. There was a Patched Up Kitty, a troll, a mermaid, some gnomes, a dragon, and even a ghost, just to name a few! Can you imagine how crazy that must be?
Ben Hatke’s illustrations are breathtaking. The story is imbued with magic, fantasy, and a whole lot of heart! Check out this book if you haven’t heard about it yet! ♥♥♥♥
You may also want to grab this other monster book by Ben Hatke:
And here’s a picture of me wearing my Book Wyrm pin
created by Andrew Brozyna for Quarterly YA box #2
Prosopagnosia (pro-suh-pag-NO-zhuh) noun: 1. an inability to recognize faces of familiar people, typically as a result of damage to the brain. 2. when everyone is a stranger.