cover image Alexander and the Dragon

Alexander and the Dragon

Katharine Holabird, Helen Craig. Clarkson N Potter Publishers, $15 (26pp) ISBN 978-0-517-56996-2

Alexander is a brave boy, even if he is small. Few things scare him, except the dark and the shadow under his bed that resembles a dragon. Alexander's father spells out the boy's choices: fight the dragon or make friends with it. Alexander first fights, but when he whacks the beast on the nose, it yelps, and that is the beginning of a long friendship. The creators of Angelina Ballerina have taken a path that othersMercer Mayer among themhave almost worn smooth, but this has some fresh, perky touches. One scene, in which Alexander's mother plays with him in the room, depicts the dragon's subterfuge and skill at not being seen. And the transformation of the dragon from ferocious beast to meek friend is winningly captured by Craig. Ages 4-7. (September)