Flight of the Last Dragon by Robert Burleigh and Mary Grandpre
|Flight of the Last Dragon by Robert Burleigh and Mary Grandpre|
|Category: For Sharing|
|Reviewer: Ruth Ng|
|Summary: I was disappointed by the dragon in this story, who didn't quite fit the idea of 'dragon' in my head, but it's a pleasant story to share with an interesting note at the end.|
|Buy? Maybe||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 32||Date: November 2012|
|Publisher: Philomel Books|
|External links: Author's website|
Told in rhyme, this is the tale of the very last dragon on earth. He hides away, deep underground, remembering the times when the dragons ruled the earth until one day a voice from the heavens calls him, summons him, up and away, to fly far, far into the sky and leave this world behind. I rather like the idea of dragons. They're one of those mythical creatures that I still sort of hope might actually be real! My daughter likes dragons too, although when she saw the title of this book she was prepared for a sad story, sensing that we weren't heading towards a happy ending.
The rhyming scheme for this story works well, for the most part, but unfortunately I really, really didn't like the name chosen for the dragon which is Ultimon. It falls into the verse as follows For here is his home! Oh, gaze upon the last of the dragons - Ultimon! and it immediately felt a little clunky to me and, somehow, a name more suited to a transforming robot than an old, dying dragon. Sad to say, this issue of the dragon's name rather coloured my opinion of the whole story, for whenever his name appeared again I felt another groan inside of me as it just didn't seem right!
Anyway, names aside, Ultimon is the last dragon and he's tired and old and, really, ready to die. He lies dreaming of days gone by until one night he hears a voice calling to him, summoning him up into the night sky. And so he's up, and he flies and he whooshes away, higher and higher, as high as the stars until, finally, turning golden and bright he becomes a star himself - Draco, the dragon star. Draco is a genuine constellation, as the short piece written at the end of the book tells you and really this was quite my favourite part of the story!
So, not only did I not like poor Ultimon's name, but I also wasn't keen on the way he was drawn. He has feathery wings! I don't know about you, but I've always thought of dragons as being scaly all over, like a crocodile, and had never imagined them with feathers. I hadn't ever really thought about it before, that I had personal preferences regarding dragons, but it seems that I do and unfortunately this dragon doesn't quite fit the bill! It's a shame because the illustrations are generally well done, with lovely night colours and good expressions for Ultimon.
I wanted to like this book more than I did. I'm sure plenty of you out there won't have any issues about the poor dragon's name, or the fact that he has feathery wings, in which case onwards to the bookshop to purchase a copy! For myself, I would rather borrow than buy this story. I will be heading out into the garden one night, however, to see if I can spot Draco, the dragon stars, up there in the sky!
You can read more book reviews or buy Flight of the Last Dragon by Robert Burleigh and Mary Grandpre at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Flight of the Last Dragon by Robert Burleigh and Mary Grandpre at Amazon.com.
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