The King of Too Many Things

illus. by Aurore Damant. 32p. Rodale Kids. Sept. 2017. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781623368746.
PreS-K—In this modern-day fairy-tale, a dark-skinned king orders his wizard to conjure up a dragon to add a little fun to his picture-perfect kingdom. When the addition of dragons makes a mess, King Jasper orders the wizard to conjure more and more things in hopes of solving the growing list of problems. In the end, King Jasper ends up making a friend, which fills a void he didn't even realize existed, and, with the help of his new friend and the wizard, he cleans up the messes, this time without magic. Vibrant, cartoon digital artwork is appealing and draws upon the illustrator's background as a character designer with experience in children's television animation. The message is a little muddled, which makes it difficult to connect the dots from King Jasper's wishing for fun to filling a void in his life that requires a friend.
VERDICT Despite the humor and visual appeal of this modern-day fairy tale, the story's message is hard to decipher and may be lost on young readers. A strictly additional purchase.

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