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The Book of Dragonsby Michael Hague
Synopses & Reviews
For thousands of years, the legendary dragon has inspired awe and wonder in cultures the world over. Now Michael Hague, one of America's most beloved painters of fantasy, boldly captures seventeen classic dragon tales. Within these pages are the stories of heroic dragon slayers such as Perseus, St. George, and Sigurd, as well as the magical writings of J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis. The mythical dragon will be very real indeed for all who read these enchanting tales.
About the Author
Michael Hague has illustrated a number of classic children's tales, including Peter Pan and The Velveteen Rabbit. His other much-loved books include The Book of Dragons,seventeen tales of the mythical beast; Sleep, Baby, Sleep,a collection of lullabies and night poems; The Rainbow Fairy Book,thirty-one classic fairy tales edited by Andrew Lang; and The Perfect Present. He lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
In His Own Words...
"I was born in Los Angeles on September 8, 1948. To me, Los Angeles was the most perfect place for a future children's book artist to grow up: Its combination of fantasy and freeways made it fertile ground for my child' s imagination to explode. Now, of course, it is a large, bustling city, but back then it was just a small bedroom community with lots of potential and a great tar pit.
"My mother, who is British and attended art school in London, gave me my first art lesson. She also gave me a wonderful set of colored pencils. The pencils came in a cardboard box decorated with the vision of the Venus de Milo.
"In addition to my exposure to fine art, my mother nurtured in me a love for books. Her childhood picture books impressed me so much that at an early age I knew exactly what I wanted to be--a baseball player. Fortunately, my inability to hit a curve ball determined that I rediscover my true vocation, book illustration.
"I graduated from high school in 1966. I did this and that for a couple of years before entering the Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles, where I graduated with honors. While attending Art Center I met my wife of twentythree years, Kathleen Burdick, a painting major. We fell in love and got married and finished school. I began sending out art portfolios to every publisher I could find an address for, desperately trying to get work as a book illustrator.
"My first book was published by Hallmark Cards in 1975. It was a pop-up version of Gulliver in Lilliput. It is very rare. If you happen to come across a copy that is reasonably priced, let me know.
"Since then I have lived what seems to be a charmed life. I have three wonderful children who are not only bright and witty but truly beautiful to look at. Probably every father says the same thing, but in my case it is absolutely true. I also have three cats, two large dogs, a bird, and a car that drives in the snow, and I live in a pink house.
"The very best thing I have is my work, which enables me to be like Peter Pan and never grow up. Being able to make pictures for all the books that were my childhood friends is like being in Never-Never Land. I not only paint fairy tales; I get to live one. I would like to give special thanks to three people: my mother, for encouraging me to be an artist, my grandfather, for his wonderful and ridiculous lies that brightened my days, and last but not least, Minnie Minoso, my favorite ball player, who always tried to take the extra base."
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