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Betty Waterton. Illustrated by Karen Kulyk.
Toronto, ON: Annick Press, 1984.
unpaged, paper, $4.95.
ISBN 0-920303-03-X. paperbound boards, $12.95. ISBN 0-920303-02-1. CIP.

Kindergarten-grade 3 / Ages 5-8

Reviewed by Margaret Marsh.

Volume 13 Number 1
1985 January

Orff, 27 Dragons (and a Snarkel!), beautifully illustrated by Karen Kulyk, proves that, if we have a dream and cling to it, "there is more than one way to get over the mountain." Orff, one of twenty-eight dragons who live in a cave under Dragon Mountain, is different from his peers. While each morning the other young dragons go out on patrol, keeping a sharp lookout for Snarkels as they soar over the very top of Dragon Mountain, Orff, who is unable to fly, although he would give anything to be able to, does "small chores like polishing doorknobs."

One day Orff dreams of a shining blue lake, "more beautiful than dragon's wings." Determined to find the lake of his dreams, he sets off to climb over the mountain. Fearful, but pushed by his dream, he traverses a dismal swamp before coming at last to the shining lake. Beautiful fish inhabit the lake, but so do the dreaded Snarkels. How Orff overcomes his fear to rid the lake of Snarkels and befriend the fish, who regard him, not as a dragon, but as a "magnificent sea creature," shows that "different" does not necessarily mean "no good."

And, though all the dragons are gone now from Dragon Mountain, there are some people who say a strange and wonderful creature still lives in the middle of the shining lake. They claim to have seen it sometimes when the moon was full.

Ogopogo, in Lake Okanagan?

Margaret Marsh, Waterloo County Board of Education, Kitchener, ON.
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