It’s The Great British Baking Show: Medieval Edition!
Had Kenneth Grahame’s Reluctant Dragon learned the fine art of patisserie, perhaps his tale would have echoed the one readers find here. A redheaded white knight on the hunt for fresh herbs finds himself at the mouth of a cave filled with mysterious ingredients. His desire to try them in a stew awakens a curious resident dragon that finds the soup delish. An instant, forbidden friendship is formed, for in this land every knight must slay a dragon and every dragon must eat a knight. The friends puzzle over the law, concocting delicious dainties in the meantime. In the end, they cook up a tasty solution involving oddly shaped doughnuts and legal semantics. The peppy digital art keeps the action hopping and the tasty treats tempting. Extra points for a map of the land that was clearly a labor of love. The rhyming text is ultimately unnecessary, but no bumps can be found in the scansion. The ending in which all xenophobic differences are overcome with the wonders of food is certainly weighted on the cockeyed-optimist side of the equation, but it’s hard to fault a book with a dragon-and-knight food fight at its close.
Cookery and chivalry mix together well in this cream puff of a tale. (Picture book. 4-7)