Beach Beast: When A Dragon Moves In by Jodi Moore
IF YOU BUILD A PERFECT SANDCASTLE, A DRAGON WILL MOVE IN.
This kid is all set for fun in the sun, something grand in the sand, being brave in the waves.
But Mom has her nose in her book, and she's not even halfway through it. Dad is stretched out on his beach towel, pursuing nothing but the perfect tan and perhaps an undisturbed little nap in the sun. And his big sister? Don't even ask.
What this beach trip needs is a a little pick-me-up, a little excitement, a touch of some genuine boy-type imagination. What he needs is a dragon in his sandcastle! And, hey, there he is!
HE'LL SETTLE IN COZY AND PEEP AT YOU FROM INSIDE,
AND YOU'LL WONDER HOW YOU EVER GOT SO LUCKY!
And for a while the boy and his dragon have a real beach ball! The dragon toasts up an instant batch of roasted marshmallows, and the two fly his kite the highest yet, blow bubbles that float out to sea on the ocean breeze, and toss the Frisbee back and forth. But then, the boy gets the urge to tell the family all about his beach dragon.
"UMM-HMMMN!"says Mom, turning the page in her page-turner.
He tries to get Dad to admire a feather from his dragon's wing.
"NICE SEAGULL FEATHER...." says Dad. "AND YOU KNOW WHAT FEATHERS ARE GOOD FOR?"
Dad gets off his towel long enough to grab that feather and give him a good tickling. No respect!
Sis spurns his collected dragon's teeth, declaring them nothing but pieces of shell.
What does a guy have to do to get appreciation for his dragon friend? It's time to ratchet up the mischief and see if he can get some admiration out of these dragon doubters.
He eats up all the peanut butter sandwiches Mom made for everyone's lunch, and leaves dragon clawprints on all the brownies! How about kicking a little sand on his sister? That should get his dragon some respect! But Dad has another point of view.
"WE'VE HAD ENOUGH OF THIS DRAGON BUSINESS!!!"
And in Jodi Moore's When a Dragon Moves In(Flashlight, 2011), our imaginative little boy reluctantly swears off dragon tenants--for now, but we know that that dragon will only vacate the sandcastle temporarily. Howard McWilliam's pencil and computer assisted illustrations get into the spirit of the pretense and underscore the humor of a sandcastle situation in a way youngsters will easily get into. A good way to kick off the summer beach season!