Torrie and the Dragonslayers

Author:  K.V. Johansen Copyright Date:  2009
Stained Glass
Torrie is not the prince or the princess, not the sorcerer or witch.  It takes a bit to figure out what Torrie is.  Torrie is an Old Thing, a furry, short creature, more human than animal, quite a likable creature and the narrator of Torrie and the Dragonslayers.  Torrie and the Dragonslayers is told as a family or clan  campfire story and we are included around the campfire.  I love KV. Johansen’s treatment of female characters in her knights and wizards settings.  The women are strong and intelligent.  They have influence and tend to need to fight a bit to be heard.  These are great stories for girls and boys.  Fantasy stories which take a shot at our gender roles of imprisoned princess, valiant knight, and trusty sidekick are a great addition to a library.  We still have princesses and knights and sidekicks but the knights can cook, the princesses can wield swords and  sidekicks are, well, sidekicks.  Johansen has a flair for descriptive language and character development.  The plot moves well and has sufficient mini-conflicts to carry interest forward.  An enjoyable read worth recommending to your fantasy or medievalist fans, definitely worth adding to the K-8 library.

Rating  #1 (Highly Recommended)   #2    ✓  #3    #4 (Not acceptable)

Interest Level:  5-8  Reading Level:  5+

Curriculum Area:  Language Arts

Themes/Topics: Magic, Fantasy, Wizardry, gender roles

This book would be suitable for   ✓ Lit Circles   ✓ Kit Materials    ✓ Read-Aloud (Gr.)  5

From a review copy, full distribution pending.  Torrie and the Dragonslayers is a expanded and adapted retelling of Torrie and the Dragon.

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Filed under children's lit, library, literacy, reading

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