The Dragon with the Blazing Bottom

The Dragon With the Blazing Bottom
Simon & Schuster Children’s Books

Back in the days of yore, disaster has struck: Sir Wayne’s dragon has lost his fearsome flame. Not a flash or a flicker can he raise no matter how hard he huffs and puffs. Sir Wayne’s alternative ideas go down like a damp squib;

only a flaming breath will do.

So what is causing this lack of fire? Could it be those spotless teeth or is his tongue too pink? The trouble must be down to diet, the knight suggests, but no need to worry. Sir Wayne has a dietary plan so sizzlingly hot it just can’t fail.

A single hot dinner comprising electric eels, half a dozen sacks of coal, an unspecified amount of oil, a couple hundred fireflies, a blazing log fire, a barbed wire-wrapped cactus, a heat-seeking rocket, a burning bush, sparklers and fireworks so long as they ‘WHOOSH!’ and finally and most disgustingly, a small piece of cheese – “Almost as green as the snot from a sneeze.”

It most definitely looks astonishing. Foolproof surely? Erm … The proof of the dinner is in the eating …

Beach has certainly created a sure fire winner of the whiffy kind with this, which apparently is the start of a series. The rhyming text reads aloud splendidly and with comical incidents aplenty, the illustrations are suitably hilarious. I can’t imagine a single child failing to respond with spluttering delight. Bring on the next episode say I.

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