How I Heard About It: Last spring I saw that Donalyn Miller was ending her school year with this book as their final read aloud. She had high praise for the book so of course I ordered it. I read it this past summer and fell in love with it. I knew my fourth graders would also enjoy it. I actually picked it for my first "Breakfast with Books" book club selection for September. I reread it this weekend and enjoyed it just as much as I did the first time.
What It Is About: Ben is going to spend the summer with his grandpa Abe in the town of Buttonville. Not much happens in this town so Ben is not too excited about the time he is going to spend here. When Ben meets Pearl, finds a hatchling that came from a dragon, and discovers a new veterinarian's office, his summer is beginning to take a turn for the better. Ben and Pearl find their way to Dr. Woo's Worm Hospital with the injured hatchling and discover a whole new world. They make a mistake when they leave the front door of the hospital open and a sasquatch escapes into the town of Buttonville. These two new friends must make things right by catching the sasquatch, getting it back to the hospital, and not letting any of the town's people know about these creatures from this imaginary world.
What I Thought Of It: I don't normally read books twice, but I had no problem rereading this book to prepare for our first book club. This is the perfect book for young readers. It has everything. The story contains two awesome characters; one being a young boy and the other being a young girl. Knowing that readers love adventure in stories, this book does not disappoint in this category. The action pretty much starts on page one and doesn't stop until the very last page. I also enjoyed the illustrations that accompanied the text. The topic of an imaginary world with its imaginary creatures was highly engaging for me so I can only imagine what it will do for my young readers. Ending with a cliff hanger, this book leads to the second book (which comes out on September 17th) in a most exciting way!
Who Should Read It: I think it is sometimes hard to find a chapter book that is geared toward beginning of the year fourth graders. This book fits perfectly for that purpose. It is definitely a chapter book, but there isn't an overly amount of text per page and the illustrations scattered throughout the book add to the appeal of the story. Readers at the end of third grade, in fourth grade, or at the beginning of fifth grade are right on target for this book/series. If a teacher in any of these grades is looking for a wonderful read aloud, look no further. This is it! Happy Reading...
Rating: 5 Stars out of 5 Stars