Ursula Vernon, Author, Ursula Vernon, Illustrator Dial Books $12.99 (146p) ISBN 978-0-8037-3363-3
Vernon's (Nurk: The Strange, Surprising Adventures of a Somewhat Brave Shrew) fiction/graphic novel hybrid stars an audacious young dragon who can't get the knack of breathing fire. After Danny Dragonbreath gets an F on his science paper about the ocean-written at the last-minute on the school bus and describing ""the rare and elusive snorkelbat""-his teacher tells him to rewrite it. To research the topic, Danny and his pal Wendell, a timid iguana, head for the Sargasso Sea. Guided by Danny's sea serpent cousin, Edward, the two encounter creatures like an octopus that can become polka-dotted or striped, ""mermen"" guarding Atlantis and a vampire squid that emits ""a cloud of glowing snot."" (They also learn about the bends, which Edward equates to ""shaking a can of soda, only inside your body."") Illustrated with comic book-style art with a lime-green wash, the story gets some spark from wry asides presented in speech balloons (""Why couldn't you have gone to the library instead?"" wails Wendell as a giant squid approaches). But scattered amusing snippets don't quite keep the tale afloat. Ages 8-12.
Reviewed on: 06/08/2009
Release date: 06/01/2009
Genre: Children's
Open Ebook - 160 pages - 978-1-101-53697-1
Open Ebook - 160 pages - 978-1-101-53706-0
Prebound-Glued - 146 pages - 978-1-62765-909-3
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