The Boy Who Grew Dragons


About The Book

This hilarious middle-grade novel with illustrations throughout sees Tomas discover that he can grow dragons in his own garden!

When Tomas discovers a strange old tree at the bottom of his grandfather's garden, he doesn't think much of it. But he takes the funny fruit from the tree back into the house and gets the shock of his life when a tiny dragon hatches! The tree is a dragon fruit tree, and Tomas now has his very own dragon, Flicker!

While Tomas finds out that life with Flicker is fun, he also finds that it is very...unpredictable. Yes, dragons are wonderful, but they also set fire to your toothbrush and leave your underwear hanging from the TV antenna. Tomas has to learn how to look after Flicker---and quickly! And then something extraordinary happens: More dragon fruits appear on the tree! Now it's official, Tomas is growing dragons.

About The Author

Andy Shepherd is a children's writer working on middle-grade fiction. She lives near Cambridge with her husband, two sons and their border collie.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Yellow Jacket (February 4, 2020)
  • Length: 224 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781499810394
  • Grades: 2 - 7
  • Ages: 7 - 12

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Raves and Reviews

"Irresistible... everything you want in a book for a newly independent reader - tender realism, honouring children's inner feelings and anarchic magic, both beautiful and regrettable. Sara Ogilvie's illustrations capture both enchantment and stench... A modern classic."

– The Guardian

A warm-hearted debut... lovely, expressive, characterful.

– Sunday Times

Tomas discovers a strange cactus at the back of his grandad's messy garden with the most amazing fruit: tiny dragons.When Grandad gets the urge to tidy up the weedy mess in his back garden, Tomas happily gives himself blisters helping out. He's reluctant to chop down the fascinating cactus hidden behind the weeds, though. It "looks like a giant upturned mophead" and is covered with the strangest fruit, glowing and spiky. Tomas' online searches tell him the strange fruit is pitaya, a dragon fruit-but unlike a real pitaya, Tomas' explodes in the middle of the night, hatching into a tiny dragon. The dragon is lovely, a gorgeous, flying, magical creature. It is also, like many babies, a creature that mainly eats and poops. There's flammable, exploding poo everywhere: in his dad's porridge, on his mother's best towel, and in Tomas' gym bag-and even illustrated in smoldering glory. As Tomas seeks to keep his dragon hidden while seeking any others that might have hatched, the lively illustrations keep pace with the slapstick action. Blond, white Tomas and his lovely pet are not the stars of the irreverent pictures, though; that honor goes to the action: a terrifying leaping cat, a grumpy neighbor toppling into a wheelbarrow of flaming cabbages, and more.Never has so much toilet humor been so charming. (Fantasy. 8-11)

– Kirkus Reviews

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