One Ox, Two Ox, Three Ox, and the Dragon King

by Jane Yolen

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Yolen's dragon stories are among her best, and she seems to enjoy trying out different ways of looking at dragons. In "One Ox, Two Ox, Three Ox, and the Dragon King," included in Here There Be Dragons, she presents a Chinese tale with Chinesestyle dragons. She has long been interested in Chinese dragons, and she incorporates a good deal of Chinese folklore into this story, but her clever ending is more reminiscent of European folk tales. The story is an enjoyable foray into the dragonlore of China, as well as a fine adventure and an exploration of how three sons overcome their fear and great obstacles out of love for their mother.

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