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Reviewed by Rosie Malezer for Readers' Favorite
Written by Wynn Everett-Albanese and Michael Albanese, The Sour Milk Dragon is the first installment in the delightful children's book series The Adventures of Birpus and Bulbus. Running as fast as they can, Birpus and Bulbus are terrified as the Sour Milk Dragon is getting close to catching them this time. Luckily they make it safely home with their Grand-wees, Nester Nook and Granny Cranny. After eating, they gather ingredients for their next meal on the forest floor, but Bulbus' blankie (Mr. Yellow) smells like sour milk to Birpus. Both realize the Sour Milk Dragon has suddenly cornered them, so Birpus and Bulbus hide under Mr. Yellow and close their eyes. When nothing happens, they finally open their eyes to find a smiling dragon, who pokes Bulbus in the belly and yells 'Tag! You're It!' Shocked, Birpus and Bulbus wonder why the dragon had not killed them. The dragon explains he does not eat meat and introduces himself as Duncan. Duncan had always wanted to play with others but everyone ran away when he tried. From then on, Birpus and Bulbus play tag in the woods. Duncan now lives under their home, is regularly fed, and is kept company while sleeping by Mr. Yellow.
Reading The Sour Milk Dragon before bed was the perfect way to end a perfect day. The well-crafted illustrations by Indre Ta are of high quality, giving the story a huge 'smile factor.' The illustrations took me back to the wonderful days of The Gruffalo. There should be more books like this, which clearly tell young readers that you cannot judge somebody or something by the way it looks. Just because you see what you consider a bad thing or a threat could very easily be somebody trying to make friends. Never judge a book by its cover - this is the rule of thumb that I was raised with, and that lesson so young is why I am still smiling at the messages that come across so firmly. Wynn Everett-Albanese and Michael Albanese have such a delightful writing style which keeps the reader engaged right up until the very end. This world needs more happy endings like this and the children of today need to grow up with great stories such as The Sour Milk Dragon to bring about a happy tomorrow. I recommend The Adventures of Birpus and Bulbus be read by children over eight years and i look forward to seeing it stocked in libraries and bookstores worldwide.