- Series: Zoey and Sassafras
- Author: Asia Citro
- Illustrator: Marion Lindsey
- Publisher: The Innovation Press
- Publication year: 2017
- Age range: 6-10 years
- Number of pages: 96
I absolutely loved “Dragons and Marshmallows”, which is the first book in the “Zoey and Sassafras” series by Asia Citro. The story wonderfully combines science and magic, introducing the scientific method in such a natural way that kids will learn it without noticing that they are being taught. The scientific facts covered in the book include eating preferences of reptiles, the difference between a carnivore, an herbivore and an omnivore, and a cold-blooded and a warm-blooded animal. In addition, there’s a glossary at the end of the book, explaining the new terms.
The main character Zoey is a kind, smart and curious budding scientist. She has her own science journal and special Thinking Goggles, which help her come up with brilliant ideas. Together with her adorable pet cat, Sassafras, Zoey explores the woods around her house, having a lot of fun.
The only thing that Zoey loves more than science is magic. So when she learns that her mom, who is a scientist too, has been treating sick magical animals in their barn for years, Zoey gets super excited and offers her help. While her mom is out for a week, Zoey and Sassafras find a sick baby dragon at their barn’s door. Trying to learn what’s wrong with the magic creature and how to help, Zoey uses the scientific method (question, hypothesis, experiments, conclusion), her past experience and her mom’s old science journals. I admired how Zoey keeps trying even when things get really hard. The support and trust that Zoey’s parents grant her only reinforces Zoey’s ability to handle a difficult mission.
The exciting mix of science and magic, adorable characters, cute black & white illustrations and relatively short chapters make this book a perfect fit for any young reader!