The way to a dragon’s heart is through his stomach.
It’s a damp, cold, spring day, and all train travel in the village of Little Chiddling has ground to a halt because there’s a sleeping dragon on the tracks. People try to wake him, but to no avail; his loud snores fill the air. The mayor offers a reward, prompting a little girl named Georgie to spring into action. Nobody notices her riding her red tricycle right up to the dragon’s snout. She waves a bag of potato chips, and immediately the dragon opens one sleepy eye. He gobbles them down, sits up, and asks Georgie for more. “Follow me,” she says. In the park, the dragon fills up on cake, cheese, and sausages. He uses his hot breath to dry the wet grass and start a barbecue grill. At a wedding reception, the intimidated groom tells him to help himself, and the dragon responds with a welcome gust to warm the shivering bride. It takes only one more demonstration of his usefulness—drying the damp fireworks for the village festival—to ensure his welcome by the community. Saunders’ cartoon illustrations look digital and kit out the dragon with red scales, wings, horns, googly eyes, and small fangs. The villagers, depicted with mostly fixed expressions, display a variety of skin tones, but the principal human characters are almost all white. Reading-comprehension questions conclude the book.
Pleasant if unexceptional. (Picture book. 3-6)