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The Boy from the Dragon Palace by Margaret…

The Boy from the Dragon Palace (original 2011; edition 2011)

by Margaret Read MacDonald, Sachiko Yoshikawa (Illustrator)

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287389,858 (4.29)None
Title:The Boy from the Dragon Palace
Authors:Margaret Read MacDonald
Other authors:Sachiko Yoshikawa (Illustrator)
Info:Albert Whitman & Company (2011), Library Binding, 32 pages
Collections:Multicultural Text Set, K-2nd Grade Readers, Multicultural Books, Traditional Fantasy, Picturebooks, Favorites
Tags:Greed, Laziness, Japan, Folktale, Rich

Work details

The boy from the dragon palace : a folktale from Japan by Margaret Read MacDonald (2011)




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The poor flower seller was once generous. He couldn’t sell any of his flowers so he gave all of his flowers to the dragon palace, Because of his kind and un selfish action, in return the dragon palace gave him a gift, a little boy. This little boy gave the flower seller anything he asked for as long as he did what he was told (to make and feed him a certain kind of food). The flower seller became more and more greedy. He wanted more and there was never enough. Soon when he had all the luxury, he was tired feeding the boy every day and sent him away. Then instantly, his house became nothing but an old wooden hut.
  rleung | Jun 26, 2014 |
An easy to like folktale, with a common lesson. Children will delight in the snotty-nosed dragon boy. This book could be used in a comparison with like-tales from other cultures. ( )
  mariekagreene | Jan 26, 2014 |
The boy with the golden snot. Very entertaining! ( )
  Sullywriter | Apr 3, 2013 |
Characters: Dragon King, woman from the sea, a young boy, and a flower-selling man.

Setting: Japan

Theme: Greed

Genre: Traditional Literature - Folklore

Golden quote (optional): “A ‘thank you’ from the Dragon King.”

Summary: A poor flower seller gives his unsold product to the sea (to the Dragon King) as a gift. The Dragon King sends a woman from the sea to give the man a sniffly-nosed child who will make his life better. In order to gain the boy’s favor, the man must give him a meal of shrimp flavored with vinegar and sugar. The man spends his last coin on a meal of shrimp for the boy. The man’s reward garners him five improvements (money, house, servants, treasures, and a garden) after the boy eats his bowl of shrimp and blows his nose. The man is greedy and grows tired of the snotty nosed boy and takes him out of his house to the road. He says he will not take care of the boy anymore. The boy blows his nose and all the man’s riches disappear. The man is again poor. The boy returns to the Dragon King.

Audience: second through sixth grade

Curriculum ties: folklore, history (Japan)

Awards (optional):

Personal response: The illustrations in this book are collage-like and engaging. The story reminds me of Aladdin’s lamp or the fisherman and his wife. The theme is more than likely present in every culture. A person’s greed and selfishness will not bare fulfillment in the long run. I love how simply the man could have continued his good fortune. He simply had to say “thank you” as the Dragon King did in the beginning of the tale. To be grateful for what you have is a lesson we all should learn, especially children. On the back cover is this quote: It’s always good to say, “Thank you!” My husband liked this book so much, after reading the book, went and bought two copies. One is for him and the other copy for his daughter who bore our first grandchild 4 months ago. ( )
  malydon | Mar 2, 2013 |
In my opinion this is an entertaining, but educational story. First, the book, which is a Japanese folktale, pushes readers to think about greed, and how, as humans, we tend to want to take the easy way out of everything. We tend to want to have others do the hard work for us, in much the same way that the flower seller wanted when he had the responsibility of feeding the young boy so that he could keep his possessions and extravagant lifestyle. However, that is now the world works, as the flower seller lost everything when his laziness got the best of him. Lastly, the rich, colorful, and lively illustrations present the story in picture format. The story can be told using just the pictures without the words. The moral of the story is that everything requires effort on your part, there is no easy way out, and laziness can destroy everything that is most dear to you. ( )
  j-plant | Nov 25, 2012 |
Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
This cautionary Japanese folktale offers an evergreen lesson: Be careful what you wish for. In this case, Aladdin’s genie is the son of the Dragon King, a boy with “the snottiest nose you ever did see!” As long as he is fed shrimp soup, he grants his keeper’s every wish. Children, predictably, will enjoy the boy’s snuffling of nose and slurping of soup. Parents will like the parable against greed. And despite the tale’s ick factor, Yoshikawa’s drawings are lovely and adorable.
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For Matilda Lucy and Cordelia Skye,

who always say, "That's enough . . . thank you!" -- M.R.M.
For my parents

And with special thanks to Mikako Miyazaki. -- S.Y.
First words
A poor flower seller found no one to buy his flowers.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0807575135, Library Binding)

One day, a poor flower sellers drops his leftover flowers into the sea as a gift for the Dragon King. What does he get in return? A little snot-nosed boy--with the power to grant wishes! Soon the flower seller is rich, but when he forgets the meaning of "thank you," he loses everything once again. "You just can't help some humans," say the snot-nosed little boy and the Dragon King.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:34:53 -0400)

A magical boy grants a poor flower-seller's every wish until the greedy and ungrateful man grows tired of the boy's unpleasant behavior and sends him away.

(summary from another edition)

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