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From Pictures to Words - a guide to choosing books for beginner readers:
Science Fiction and Fantasy


Bella’s Dragon by Chris Powling
Published by The Penguin Group, 1990
ISBN 0-14-032735-5
Illustrations © Robert Bartelt, 1990

Readers will find themselves in the middle of this story straightaway. There is no lead-up or background to the appearance of the dragon in Bella’s back garden. Ordinary events, like Bella’s day off school because of burst pipes, are presented alongside the extraordinary arrival of a dragon in the garden in a way that reads quite natural.

When Bella tells the dragon to take no notice of inquisitive passers-by, the dragon replies, “I thought they were pointing at you.”

This is an example of the consistent humour present throughout the story. Large type with illustrations on every double-page spread and repeated text throughout this Puffin Read Alone will appeal to beginner readers.

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