THE CHAMPIONS OF APPLEDORE by Romayne Dawnay

THE CHAMPIONS OF APPLEDORE

by & illustrated by
Age Range: 8 - 12
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KIRKUS REVIEW

 A delightful comic adventure in the spirit of Sharp's The Rescuers, set in a lighthearted alternative to Joan Aiken's fantasy Britain. The ``Champions'' who rid Appledore of vicious wolves are the lovably bumbling Sir Pomfrey, his silent valet Ragwort (a gifted cook), an ``eloquent and resourceful'' Scottish mouse, Iona, and dauntless Tom the Boy (son of Tom the Man), whose exloits are punctuated with escapes from a demanding mum. The world-traveled Iona's acquaintance, Grunwinkle, a deteriorating dragon, is their secret weapon--once renovated. ``Under the grime'' left by ``decades of neglect,'' he's found to be ``as gray as an uncooked shrimp,'' but bright new paint (``his nails were [now] as vermilion as his bloodshot eyes'') spruces him up; Tom plans to fool the wolves with a torch in place of the fiery breath which has been quenched by the dragon's perpetual sniffles, and Grunwinkle comes to his former self long enough to rout the enemy, before flying off to a well-earned retirement. An infestation of polecats (smelly, garrulous, rude little weasels) adds substantially to the humor of this splendid debut, whose fresh wit and lively action (vividly reflected in the author's energetic drawings) make it an irresistible readaloud. (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: April 1st, 1994
ISBN: 0-02-789355-3
Page count: 160pp
Publisher: Four Winds/MacMillan
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 1994