It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!

Today's Wild Card authors are:

and the book:

WaterBrook Press (January 11, 2011)
***Special thanks to Staci Carmichael, Marketing and Publicity Coordinator, Doubleday Religion / Waterbrook Multnomah / Divisions of Random House, Inc. for sending me a review copy.***


A former schoolteacher, Donita K. Paul is the best-selling author of the Dragon Keeper series, The Vanishing Sculptor, and Dragons of the Valley.

Visit the author's website.

Evangeline Denmark likes to turn bedtime stories into picture books. She lives in Colorado with her engineer husband, their two noisy boys, her author mom, and Willie, a cattle dog who tries to herd the entire family into one room.

Visit the author's website.


Vincent Nguyen has illustrated numerous children's books and is also a part of the art departments for 20th Century Fox and Blue Sky Studios.

Product Details:

List Price: $11.99
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: WaterBrook Press (January 11, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 030744645X
ISBN-13: 978-0307446459

AND NOW...THE FIRST FOUR the pictures to better view them:


By Donita K. Paul & Evangeline Denmark
Published by Waterbrook Press
36 colorful pages

Book Description: “Padraig, my friend, it is time for us to be courageous.”

Padraig the dragon and his best friend, Roger the turtle, are determined to spend the whole night outside. As brave explorers at the base of Mount Sillymanborrow, the boys use their imaginations to have fun while munching on crunchy baked bugs and toasting s’mores over their campfire. But when the sky gets dark and the sounds of strange animals fill the forest outside their tent, their safari gets scary. This adventure is just what the boys need to discover that the dark might be frightening, but their friendship is stronger than fear.

Review: I’ve enjoyed reading other books by Donita K. Paul that have a youth audience, so when an opportunity came about to receive a review copy of this delightfully colorful picture book, I signed up.

I adore the beautifully illustrated pictures by Vincent Nguyen in this book. The story is about two boys deciding to go on an all night safari. It’s a great idea until it starts to get dark. The outdoors sure does look and sound different at night. The boys’ imaginations run wild as they try to determine what animal is making the sound they hear. The boys encourage each other as they both try to be brave and make it on this all night adventure inside the tent.

Each helps the other to be courageous as they attempt to rescue an animal they've determined must be hurt by the noise its’ making. Dragon and Turtle are scared, but together they are able to do far more than they could imagine.

I smiled as I read the story and looked at the pictures! I got a warm feeling inside as I watched these boys work together and not tear down each other, and make fun of how each was scared. There was no power struggle here. At the back of the book is a camp story one of the boys was too afraid to hear at night in the tent. Donita and Evangeline give parents a way to talk to their children about respect, courage and being encouraging to one another in scary times. The book emphases the scripture verse in Deuteronomy 31:6 “: Be strong and courageous. Do not be Afraid…God goes with you; He will never leave you.”

The author says, “practicing truth in small things helps children depend on TRUTH in large things.”

That’s a good word for everyone. I really enjoyed this book and look forward to other Dragon and Turtle adventures.

Nora St.Laurent
The Book Club Network


  1. Oops! That quote should say "practicing truth in small things helps children depend on TRUTH in large things." Don't you love typos.
    Thanks for the review, Nora. I'm still hoping we get to meet some day.

  2. THANKS Donita for HELPING ME!! OHMYGOSH!! Yes, Just live typos!! I've fixed it. Thanks again for stopping by. I'd LOVE to meet you too. I adored your Christmas book! Fun! Fun! Fun!!