Book Chat

NPBM Blog-Along: Dragons

Did you know that November is Picture Book Month?

Trick question, because it never was before… but now it is!  Picture Book Month is an international initiative to celebrate children’s books and debunk the rumor that printed books will cease to exist because of new technology.  Go read more at founder Dianne de Las Casas’ website, and tune in for the blog posts by famous authors and illustrators.  There’s even a calendar with different themes for each day of November, so you can play along.

You know I can’t resist a good picture book, so this is right up my alley!  Instead of NaNoWriMo or any of the other 30-Day-Blog-Challenges, I’ve decided to take on Picture Book Month as my own personal blogging challenge–I will highlight one book a day that goes along with the theme for that day, in addition to my regular blogging.  Join me for Picture Book Month and share your favorite picture books!

November 14, 2011
Theme: Dragons

Now you probably wouldn’t think that I would have so many dragon picture books on my shelves that I couldn’t choose between them, but that’s what happened!  I had to put Puff on the Sea day so that I could narrow my choices down to two–and I justify it as one for a younger audience, and one for slightly older readers.  Enjoy two-for-one picture books today!

The Land of Long Ago, written and illustrated by Elsa Beskow

I’ve found quite a few charming picture books by looking to see what SouleMama‘s children are reading–and this one made it to my Amazon wish list in that way.  Then the book made the journey to my house in a surprising package as a get-well gift from one of my oldest friends and her family–the very same reader who won the blogiversary giveaway, in fact!  (They covered all my bases–a quilting book, a picture book, and a fiction book–generous indeed!)

This story is quaint and sweet in the manner of all Elsa Beskow’s stories.  The story has magic, and a log come to life as a dragon, and trapped princes and princesses, and goblins who reward kind children.  A perfect read-aloud and exactly what comes to mind when you want a story that will take you to a “land of long ago”!

Merlin and the Dragons, written by Jane Yolen and illustrated by Li Ming

This picture book actually came from my brother’s collection–I believe I confiscated it when it came time to give away all of our childhood things when my parents moved.  It’s a story about King Arthur, told when he was still a boy king and coming to terms with his authority as king.  This is a great glimpse into Arthur legends, and I like how Yolen didn’t attempt to tell the whole story–just one tale told with great detail.  I hadn’t pulled out this book in a long while, until I was looking for “dragon” books, and it makes me want to hunt up other books that Yolen wrote about Arthur.  The illustrations are gorgeous, and the story is quite dramatic and interesting.

So those are my two Dragon picture books–they’re both so good, I couldn’t choose one and let the other go unrecognized!  What’s your favorite Dragons picture book?

Tune in tomorrow for the next picture book, and check out Picture Book Month’s website too!

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