Once Upon the Rhine is the first book in RA Anderson’s Cody the Cockatrice Series. It’s a children’s fantasy adventure story about Cody, an extraordinary hybrid cockerel-dragon and protector of guardian children. His kind is mostly known as a cockatrice, but the children don’t believe in them anymore. Cockatrices are invisible if children don’t believe in them, so Cody has been worrying for 50 years because he hasn’t had a guardian child for that long, and that maybe a sign of extinction. But when Brody, an American kid who’s on a tour with his family around the city of Basel sees Cody, his despair turns to hope.
I got this in paperback and it looked so beautiful! And when I read it, the content was even more wonderful! Every chapter just makes you want to read the next one because the characters are too interesting and adorable. Cody’s pursuit of finding out whether he really can be seen by Brody gives such a thrill, and once he finally confirms that he isn’t invisible to him, I felt so delighted!
There is such great connection between Brody, Bowen, Bryant, and Cody. And what made it more entertaining was the setting in Basel, Switzerland because their family is on a tour and they’re going around tourist spots, learning about cocoa, and a lot of stuff that I also liked. I’m 40 years old and I very much enjoyed reading it, so I will definitely let my three kids read this book as well!
I’m giving this book 5 out of 5 stars. The story is easy to follow, it’s very informative, has an important lesson, good illustrations, and it certainly can entertain adults too. It’s a great children’s book for ages 5 – 12 years old, but I highly recommend this to all ages because I just love this book and I think anyone and everyone would love it as well.