West, Tracey. Rise of the Earth Dragon (Dragon Masters series, book 1.) Illustrated by Graham Howells. Branches/ Scholastic, 2014. $15.99. ISBN 9780545646246. 90 pgs. Ages 6-8. P8Q8.
This is a fun, exciting chapter book that should appeal to boys and girls alike. Drake is a farmer’s son, used to working in the onion fields. One day he is taken by the king’s soldiers to become a dragon master! The story is fast paced and introduces us to castle life and life as a dragon trainer. Drake learns new skills and begins to understand the power of Worm, his earth dragon, and how he differs from the other dragons. The adventure leaves us with some questions- is the king really a good king? Is it really okay to kidnap dragons (and dragon masters)? What is the trouble that is hinted at in the last pages? The lively drawings enrich the story and will help young readers move through the text.
April 2015 review by Carol Schramm.