Dragon Mode, by Sally Odgers

Reviewed by Kathryn Duncan

Every little boy has times in his life when he is in dragon mode and this is definitely no different in this wonderful book by Sally Odgers. Unlike real little boys, the main character knows what he does wrong when he is in dragon mode and that mothers, brothers, teachers and even the cat “don’t like dragons much.”

The illustrations are bright and entertaining and Chantal Stewart has done a wonderful job of capturing the emotions of each character – even in dragon mode, this little boy is rather appealing. Sally Odgers has kept the text simple and easy to understand for young children and uses repetition throughout to reinforce the two modes – dragon and boy.

As with all books, people will read different things into this story, but I found Dragon Mode to be about a boy being a boy (all little boys have two modes), and also about how children react to the behaviour of others. As the story progresses the main character appears in dragon mode when he is not getting the attention of someone, or when he does something they do not like. Maybe there is a message here for parents.

Dragon Mode is a book ready to become a favourite with pre-schoolers and early readers.

Dragon Mode, by Sally Odgers, illus by Chantal Stewart
New Frontier Publishing, 2007
HB rrp $24.95