#1015 – The Storybook Knight by Helen and Thomas Docherty

cover The Storybook Knight
Written by Helen Docherty
Illustrated by Thomas Docherty
Sourcebooks Jabberwocky  10/11/2016
978-1-4926-3814-8
32 pages   Ages 4 +

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“Can a
story save
the kingdom?

“When Leo’s mom and dad
send him off to fight a dragon,
he takes a shield, a sword—and
a pile of his favorite books.

“But can a story be as
mighty as a sword?”

[INSIDE JACKET]

Review
Leo is a knight-in-training, yet if he had his druthers, Leo would just read. Mom and dad do not feel the same way. They would prefer Leo did more sword fighting and less page turning. When an advert is placed in a magazine—knight to rid village of destructive dragon—Leo’s parents hand him a new shield and sword, and send him on his way. They hope he will return a hero—if Leo returns at all.

The Storybook Knight is a fun read aloud with interesting rhymes that roll right of your tongue faster than a dragon can destroy a village. Leo packs his things up on Ned, his horse, including several of his favorite books. Not far into his trip, a terrifying griffon pounces upon Leo. With his fists up, the griffin dares Leo to fight. Leo suggests he would win, given he has a brand new sword, and then offers to read a story with pictures of a griffin in it. The griffin is amused and aptly listens to Leo’s story. Leo then gifts the storybook to the griffin, who responds with a bow. Such an interesting way to handle a conflict.
advertIf only this type of conflict resolution could work on other unruly beasts, but—wait. A troll interrupts Leo and Ned’s picnic lunch. The troll is hungry and the little knight looks rather scrumptious. Leo looks through his books and finds a story with a troll in it. The troll has a bigger ego than appetite and insists on hearing the story of the troll. By story’s end, the Troll is enamored and forgets all about his stomach. Leo offers the Troll the storybook, which the Troll did not eat. So maybe reading stories can sooth a beast’s soul. But will this tactic work on the unruly dragon Leo is to slay?
griffin-flies-inKids will love this sweet story. Leo is a cute knight and much smaller than any of the beasts. Since most bullies are, or seem to be, larger than their victims are, children will identify with Leo and the threats he receives from the bully-beasts. Having Leo find a calm, imaginative resolution shows kids creativity and a good story can tame bullies as well as beasts, even if they cannot read the story themselves. (Bullies need positive attention.)
trolleditcolorcorrectedThe acrylic ink and watercolor illustrations are fun. Filled with emotional features, each character projects their identity making it easy to understand their feelings. Even Ned the horse has expressive eyes. The beasts change from threatening to sweet with the flip of the page giving readers interesting details to scrutinize throughout The Storybook Knight. With the amusing, rhythmic text, and dialogue awaiting inventive voices kids will love The Storybook Knight as much as adults will love reading it.

THE STORYBOOK KNIGHT. Text copyright © 2016 by Helen Docherty. Illustrations copyright © 2016 by Thomas Docherty. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, Naperville, IL.

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Add The Storybook Knight to Your Goodreads Shelf HERE.
Teachers’ Guide is HERE.
Activity Book is HERE.

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Reprinted with permission from THE STORYBOOK KNIGHT © 2016 by Helen Docherty, Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, an imprint of Sourcebooks Inc., Illustrations © 2016 by Thomas Docherty.

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Copyright © 2016 by Sue Morris/Kid Lit Reviews. All Rights Reserved

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The Storybook Knight
Written by Helen Docherty
Illustrated by Thomas Docherty
Sourcebooks Jabberwocky 10/11/2016
9781492638148

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