Curious World of Dandy-Lion

Lorraine Hawley

Written by Lorraine Hawley
Illustrated by Jocie Salveson

Sweet. Empowering. Fantastical

A remarkable sensitive girl struggles to make friends in an impossible fifth-grade world filled with magical creatures only she can see.

In a small Indiana town, Meredith experiences whimsical within the mundane. Fireflies dance inside lampposts, flowers wave in greeting, and an opinionated beetle named Floss wreaks havoc on her life. No one believes her—not even her parents—but more pressing problems are at hand.

The widower neighbor, who is like her grandparent, won’t leave his home. He has been jinxed, Meredith believes, by Billy, aka her bully. Desperate to free Mr. Dally, Meredith devises a plan. What can go wrong?

With Floss sabotaging her? Everything. The task may be more than she can handle alone.

Then Meredith meets Jax, a curious boy who claims to see her extraordinary friends. He agrees to help. Against her better judgment, Meredith leads him inside her fantastical world only to discover Jax has plans of his own.

Ages 9-12, 6″x9″


  1. Emma Megan for Readers’ Favorite

    Curious World of Dandy-Lion by Lorraine Hawley is a children’s adventure book about a gifted and curious fifth-grade girl called Meredith Smart. Meredith has a wild imagination, and she’s friendless. Well, she has friends, but imaginary ones. In her journal, she wrote down her most important mission. She has to make a real friend, but it must be a girl, to help her break the jinx that keeps Mr. Dally, her neighbor, trapped in his house since his wife died. Meredith learns that she needs Billy, her bully from school, to break the jinx. However, she meets Jax, a boy that wants to help her. Jax soon teaches Meredith that friends are hard to keep, and he makes her doubt him. But is Jax real or a figment of her imagination? Will he and Billy help her save Mr. Dally?

    Curious World of Dandy-Lion by Lorraine Hawley is a delightful, enjoyable, and touching story. It contains lovely illustrations that depict scenes from a little girl’s amazing imaginary world. I absolutely love this sweet, gorgeously written tale and how it honors the importance of showing kindness and compassion to sad and lonely people around us. It teaches children to believe in themselves, embrace their uniqueness, and that friends are for fun, adventure, and helping others. Curious World of Dandy-Lion by Lorraine Hawley nicely proves that even the smallest creatures, magical or real, can help others in a big way. Kids with a wild imagination, imaginary friends, or who have trouble making friends in school will resonate with this book.

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