Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The Reason for Dragons by Chris Northrop & Jeff Stokely

When I took a look at the cover of this book, I knew I had to read it. Sometimes you can judge a book by it's cover and this artwork made my heart melt the moment I saw it. A touching story to follow, I had pretty much made up my mind up about the book in the first 10 pages: Classic. It's the type of story that anyone can appreciate no matter how old or young you may be. Archaia picked this one right. Jeff Stokely is brilliant with illustrations that carry a timelessness equated to some of the world's most cherished children's books. Although some of the language is more adult, the book can easily be cherished by all ages. The story contains little to no violence so I approve it for children's reading. The illustrations are awe inspiring.

The story involved a 16 year old boy named Wendell who is taunted by his peers and dared into retrieving a pamphlet from a supposedly haunted, abandoned renaissance fair. He must prove himself! There he meets a knight! Or rather a crazy person in a knights costume who explains that there is a dragon lurking in the woods which he must destroy.

I think it is the sentiment that is timely most of all with this story; You have nothing to prove to anyone but yourself. At times everyone feels that they must prove their worth to those who would look down on them. Wendell tries this by charging towards the abandoned theme park, braving this haunted place. Of course it gets him into trouble and a bit of an adventure as well. It's here he meets the knight who imparts the value and importance of having self worth. Wendell must have confidence in himself to help this very odd stranger.

There is a lot of effort in the last 5 years to prevent bullying in play grounds and online. Bullying is an unfortunate part of life but technology has made it easier for people to be unfair. The comforting perspective offered by this book makes it a great story for children, most of which feel bullied at some point or another in life. Get this book, get it.. I dare you.