Description from GoodReads:
In the town of Squashbuckle, just about anything can happen, and when Henry Penwhistle draws a mighty Chalk Dragon on his door, the dragon does what Henry least expects--it runs away. Now Henry's art is out in the world for everyone to see, and it's causing trouble for him and his schoolmates Oscar and Jade. If they don't stop it, the entire town could be doomed! To vanquish the threat of a rampaging Chalk Dragon, Sir Henry Penwhistle, Knight of La Muncha Elementary School, is going to have to do more than just catch his art--he's going to have to let his imagination run wild. And THAT takes bravery.
Quick thoughts on the book:
"Dragons can only eat you, but people can laugh at you, and that is like being
chewed to death by a smile." - Henry Penwhistle from Henry and the Chalk Dragon
First, would it be completely terrible to judge a book by it's cover? Henry and the Chalk Dragon has a fabulous cover. Not only because of the chalk drawing on the black background, but because the cover is soft. Not squishy soft but a smooth soft.
Okay, I am moving on and beyond the cover. Jennifer Trafton has created an enjoyable, imaginative read in Henry and the Chalk Dragon. Within pages, I was caught up in the beauty of her writing. It has a timeless, classic feel. Additionally, what child hasn't imagined a painting or their drawing coming to life? In this case, a mighty dragon that runs away and causes all sorts of chaos leaving Henry, Oscar and Jade to deal with it.
"You're a nut," said Oscar.
"I am not a nut."
"Hey, I've got an idea. If we can find out what kind of a roar a dragon's mother makes, then we can sneak into Principal Bunk's office and use the intercom to broadcast dragon-mother sounds around the whole school. and the dragon will miss its mother and come looking for her, and then we can catch it."
"No, I've got a better idea," said Henry. "You can keep being a knight, but I need to become a superhero for a minute."
Oscar looked doubtful. "What is your superpower?" he said.
"I can read minds but only on Fridays. And only when I'm wearing my supersocks."
Imagination and humor and adventure balance out one another to make an engaging read for children and adult. This is one of those books that makes for a wonderful read aloud in the classroom. Look for Henry and the Chalk Dragon at your local indie bookstore or community library.
About the author: Jennifer Trafton is the author of The Rise and Fall of Mount Majestic (Dial, 2010) which received starred reviews in Publishers Weekly and School Library Journal and was a nominee for Tennessee’s Volunteer State Book Award and the National Homeschool Book Award. Henry and the Chalk Dragon arose from her lifelong love of drawing and her personal quest for the courage to be an artist. She lives in Nashville, Tennessee, where, in addition to pursuing her love of art and illustration, she teaches writing classes, workshops, and summer camps in a variety of schools, libraries, and homeschool groups in the Nashville area, as well as online classes to kids around the world. To learn more, and to download free materials, visit jennifertrafton.com.
Giveaway: One copy of Henry and the Chalk Dragon. Winner must be 13 years old or older and have a U.S. mailing address.