Nick Bland, How to hatch a dragon (Bunny and Bird, #1), HarperCollins Publishers, August 2023, pp., RRP $24.99 (hbk), ISBN 9781460764053
Bird gives Bunny the gift of a dragon egg from the dragon egg shop. There are two types of dragon: blue ones and yellow ones, but you can’t tell which it will be from the shell. Together, Bunny and Bird learn from the dragon egg handbook that the blue dragons are easy to care for and they love to eat fish and chips. Yellow dragons, on the other hand, are problematic, growing to a very large size, very quickly and they like to eat wood. Once grown, they lay an egg and fly away, never to return.
Bunny and Bird begin to worry that the dragon in their egg might be yellow, but while they have their attention on the handbook, the egg hatches behind them. Still, Bunny and Bird suspected nothing as their yellow dragon does exactly what the handbook describes.
This is a fabulous example of a picture book in which the words tell one story while the illustrations tell another. The reader is treated to a secret story that the story’s characters aren’t aware of. The story’s twist will leave young readers laughing at the dragon’s antics, and pouring back over the illustrations.
A funny, original, and clever new picture book from Nick Bland.
Reviewed by Pamela Ueckerman