Many of my friends have young children and giving a book is one of my favorite gifts to give. Boy books are always harder for me to find so I was excited when I saw The Dragon and the Turtle Go on Safari. I thought it might be a great book to read to a young, adventurous boy. The story is about a dragon and a turtle who camp outside one night. The boys have fun eating baked bugs, making s'mores, and using their imaginations to see different animals such as a rhino that is really a dog and a monkey that is an owl.
I have to say I was disappointed with this book. First of all the words and phrases used were too difficult for the age this book is intended for. I like when books stretch a child's vocabulary, but there were too many words that needed to be explained. Also many of the phrases seem to use British English. For example, one line says, "Cheerio. Right jolly good spot for us." I liked how the book portrayed friendship (the friends were supportive and helpful; didn't make fun of each other), but I don't think the theme of "the dark might be frightening, but friendship is stronger than fear," came through very well. The last page has the Bible verse, "Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid...God goes with you; he will never leave you." Deuteronomy 31:6. In my opinion this would have been a better theme and could have been woven though the story.
The one thing I liked about this book is the last page with the Bible verse and other conversation starters for a parent to discuss with their child. I wish more books had these kinds of questions and things to ponder to promote discussion.
I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review. The review is my honest opinion of the book.