3 out of 4 stars
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The Dragon Without Wings by S.F. Clawson, as the title suggests, is a children's book about a young dragon, Hopper, who is born without wings. Everyone else in his village has wings and although most of the other dragons accept him as he is, there are others that bully and ostracize him. His friend, Snow, and his cousin, Zephyr, find ways to play with him and treat him like a normal dragon. However, one day Snow falls ill with the same illness his late grandmother had. Despite his physical disadvantages, Hopper follows in his grandfather's footsteps and makes plans to fly over the mountains in search of a special flower, the only thing that can cure Snow's illness. Using ingenuity and the cooperation of his friends and fellow villagers, Hopper must go on an adventure to a place that no one has ever returned from.
Hopper is such a sweet and resilient dragon. Despite the sometimes intense bullying he endures, especially from adults in the village, he never takes his anger or frustration out on other dragons. Instead, he turns it into energy to improve himself and prove the bullies wrong.
I really enjoyed the story's fast pace and the way the author tied parts of the story together so that there are no extraneous events. I thought that most of the book would be devoted to Hopper's travels during his adventure, but that was not the case. The author took the time to set up the story and characters so that by the time Hopper's adventure started, I was cheering for him as much as his friends and family were.
There were only two majors issues with the book. The first was that the author did not know the difference between "its" and "it's." Many of the mistakes I took note of were related to the misuse of those words and other possessive errors. Also, there were a few areas in the book where the dialogue was choppy. I felt like the author could have simplified the dialogue or left it out altogether for a smoother read. Another thing that may bother some people is the bullying that Hopper endures. It does get physical at times and may be a little much for very young readers. Not to mention the descriptions of broken bones and other injuries he gets while on his adventure are not for the squeamish.
Although I want to give The Dragon Without Wings 4 out of 4 stars because I enjoyed it so much, the numerous grammatical errors have forced me to give it only 3 out of 4 stars. In my opinion, this is a great children's story that shows a character overcoming difficulties and relying on others to grow as a person and accomplish great things. I believe all children would be interested in it, but especially children with disabilities or those who feel like they don't belong will be happy to see the representation of characters similar to themselves.
The Dragon Without Wings
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