Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher (Magic Shop Series)

Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher (Magic Shop Series)

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Sixth-grader Jeremy Thatcher discovers a strange magic shop he has never seen before. He enters, and his life is changed forever. Buying what he thinks is a marble, he discovers he has really purchased a dragon’s egg.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780152062521
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 11/01/2007
Series: Magic Shop Series , #2
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 176
Sales rank: 68,348
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 7.50(h) x 0.48(d)
Age Range: 8 - 12 Years

About the Author

BRUCE COVILLE is the author of over 100 books for children and young adults, including the international bestseller My Teacher is an Alien, the Unicorn Chronicles series, and the much-beloved Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher. His work has appeared in a dozen languages and won children's choice awards in a dozen states. Before becoming a full time writer Bruce was a teacher, a toymaker, a magazine editor, a gravedigger, and a cookware salesman. He is also the creator of Full Cast Audio, an audiobook company devoted to producing full cast, unabridged recordings of material for family listening and has produced over a hundred audiobooks, directing and/or acting in most of them. Bruce lives in Syracuse, New York, with his wife, illustrator and author Katherine Coville. Visit his website at

Read an Excerpt

Animals fed, Jeremy sat down to study the ball. Shoving aside a stack of unfinished drawings, he placed the box in the center of his desk and took off the lid.

It's like a kaleidoscope, he thought, as the colors swirled in the light of his desk lamp. Except you don't need to look through a tube to see it.

Marveling that the old man had sold him such a wonder for only a quarter, Jeremy reached out to touch its glossy surface. With a cry of surprise he pulled back his hand.

The ball was warmer than before. Eying it nervously, Jeremy unfolded the paper the old man had tucked into the box. Probably directions for keeping it clean, he thought, as he spread the paper out on his desk. But when he looked at it, he blinked in surprise.

A picture of a dragon stretched up the left side and around the top corner of the page. A burst of flames extending from its mouth separated into fiery letters that said, "How to Hatch a Dragon's Egg."

Jeremy frowned. What kind of fool does that old man think I am?

The whole thing was ridiculous. But it was also intriguing, so he decided to read the rest of the page, which had been written by hand in a script that was loose and spidery.


The egg you have just purchased has already gone through a long aging process. It now needs but two things to be ready to hatch -- the light of a full moon, and the words of a true friend.

To quicken the egg, take it outside at midnight on the night of the next full moon. Lift it to the moonlight and whisper: Full moon's light to wake the egg, Full moon's light to hatch it; Midsummer Night will crack the world, But St. John's Day will patch it.

Exposethe egg to the moonlight for at least three hours, then await the results.

You have been entrusted with a very special creature, Jeremy Thatcher. Treat it with care, for its safety depends upon your willingness to follow these directions exactly.

It goes without saying that secrecy is essential.

Good hatching!

-S. H. Elives

Jeremy felt the hairs at the back of his neck begin to prickle. How did that old man know my name? he wondered. He was sure he had never mentioned it.

"Hey, Bub!" said a voice, making him jump.

The voice came from a speaker mounted on the wall next to his desk -- part of the intercom system his dad had installed during the last burst of what Jeremy's mother called "Herbert's occasional electronic enthusiasms."

"Hey, Bub," repeated his father. "Are you there?"

"I'm here," said Jeremy, somewhat reluctantly.

"Well, you shouldn't be. You should be here, getting your chores done."

Despite the admonishing words, Dr. Thatcher's voice was cheerful.

"Be right there," said Jeremy, trying to sound enthusiastic.

Slipping the instructions under a pile of his drawings, Jeremy headed out of his room and down the stairs. With Grief bouncing at his heels, he ambled down the winding driveway, past the pair of small barns, to his father's veterinary office. Stepping inside, Jeremy found his father shoving vitamins into a ferret.

"Hold still, ho-o-old still," crooned Herbert Thatcher to the squirming mass of brown and yellow fur in his hands. "Ah, there's a love!"

Jeremy reached out to take the ferret.

"Hey, kiddo," said his father, handing over the animal. "How was your day?"

Jeremy put the ferret on his shoulder. The action gave him a chance to think about his father's question.

"Complicated," he said at last, squirming a bit as the little animal licked his ear.

Dr. Thatcher raised an eyebrow, his way of requesting more information.

"Well, for one thing, Mary Lou Hutton wants to kiss me."

Dr. Thatcher wrinkled his nose. "That's what you get for being so cute."

"I'm not cute!"

"Okay, you're ugly. Put Farrah in her cage and go feed the cats. I've got one more patient to see before I can knock off for the night."

Jeremy caged the ferret, then found the cat food and began filling the dishes. In the next to last cage crouched an enormous orange-and-white cat with tattered ears and a swollen eye.

"Hey, Pete," said Jeremy. "How ya doin'?"

The cat -- whose full name, according to his owner, was "Fat Pete, Porkus Extrernus" -- was in the office at least once a month to get stitched up after one of his fights. While today's eye problem was new, the tattered ears had been that way for years.

Jeremy reached through the bars to scratch behind Pete's ears. The cat responded by clawing his hand.

Jeremy pulled back. "Why, you rotten..."

"Jeremy!" called his father from the other room. "What's the rule?"

Jeremy sighed. "There's no sense in getting mad at a cat for being a cat." He knew it was true, but he stuck his tongue out at Pete anyway.

After all the animals were fed, Jeremy and his father walked back to the house. The sky was dark with clouds, and in the distance they could hear a rumble of thunder.

"When's the next full moon?" Jeremy asked suddenly, as they reached the back door.

Dr. Thatcher, who was apt to burst into song whenever something reminded him of a Iyric, threw back his head and sang, "Full mooooon brings empty heart --"


Dr. Thatcher paused. "I don't know," he said. "But it can't be long. Go get today's paper."

"I don't think a full moon counts as big news, Dad."

"Just get the paper."

Jeremy got the paper. His father showed him the almanac on the inside of the first page. It told when the sun came up, when it was going to set, what time the moon rose and set, and other equally trivial things.

"They're not so trivial when you want to know them," said Dr. Thatcher. "Anyway," he continued, pointing to the almanac, "to answer your question, the next full moon is tonight."


Dr. Thatcher glanced at his watch. "Starting in about two hours," he said. "Assuming it doesn't rain."

Jeremy swallowed. He didn't really believe the thing upstairs was an egg. But if he wanted to know for sure, he'd have to start tonight. Either that, or wait another whole month.

Leaving his father, he went upstairs to look at the ball. He picked it up and held it for a moment. It was warmer than ever. Pulling out the directions, he made up his mind.

Tonight he would try to hatch a dragon.

Copyright © 1993 by Bruce Coville

Table of Contents

1Love Letter of Doom1
2Strange Instructions12
4Hyacinth Priest33
5Things Unseen44
7Still Life64
8The Dragon Who Came to Dinner74
9The Heat Is On86
10The Hatchers97
12Night Flights120
13Nothing You Love Is Lost132

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

[set star] "A funny, enjoyable, imaginative story whose serious undercurrents lend it unexpected depth."—Kirkus Reviews
"Not only is the story involving but the reader can really get a feeling for Jeremy as a person."—VOYA
"Will bring laughter and near tears to readers . . . Dragons really exist for a little while."—School Library Journal

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 59 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I attended school as a very shy girl and hated the school work but i loved reading and the libarary was my favorite place in the whole world. I found this book lying horozontal, underneath all the others, dusty and forgotten but with one sitting it soon became my favorite book. I read it everyday from start to finish at least once and when it came time to move at the end of a six month period as it inevitably would, i took it with me, i know what youre thinking, thats stealing. Well thats how mom saw it and mailed it back. I missed that book and Jeremy, as i had come to like him very much. But most of all i missed dragon and i wished i had gone home with the dragon. This book is beyond five stars but that is as high as they will go.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Best book I ever read!!!!!This is a MUST read book!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
:) My 3rd grade teacher read this book to my class and everone was hooked. Most of us asked where she got it and she said, "Barns and Noble." So of course I went looking for it but I could not find it. And here it is! Unfortunitly I am in 8th grade now so I do not think I will be reading it and putting it in my book log but I may just get it as a I'm-really-bored-and-have-nothing-to-do-so-I'll-just-read-this book. But it was/is an amazingly good book or I wouldn't have remembered it when I came across it FIVE YEARS LATER! :) *it used to have a better cover.... :\
t1bclasslibrary on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Jeremy, while running away from a pair of bullies, discovers a magic shop with a dragon egg. Raising the dragon he hatches from the egg is not easy, but Jeremy finds an ally in the girl who caused his teasing to begin with. The dragon is difficult, but wonderful, and Jeremy misses her terribly when she goes to her own land. He even gives up the art he loves, but he discovers that he remains connected to her, and goes back to it.
Aerivore on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
An absolutely fantastic book that is whimsical and otherwise enjoyable from cover to cover. I picked this book up when I was in elementary school and I remembered it vividly for years following. While working at a book store (perhaps my favorite place I've worked to date), I saw it in a miniature hardback and snatched it, at 18 years old, read it cover to cover in a matter of hours that evening (it is rather short, and fits the age group), and even now it rests on my bookshelf. It was definitely a purchase I do not regret, and I lovingly recall it even now, at 24. If I ever have kids, it is one that will be read to them, without a doubt.
porch_reader on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I loved this book, and so did both my first-grader and my fourth-grader! This is one of Bruce Coville's Magic Shop Books. The series also includes Jennifer Murdley's Toad, which both of my boys heard at school. Jeremy Thatcher is a sixth grader, and his struggles are typical for his age. A girl in his class wants to kiss him. His art teacher gives him a hard time, even though art is his best subject. But when he wonders into a magic shop one day after school, he's faced with a task that is anything but typical, hatching and raising a dragon. The plot of this book had enough depth to it to hold everyone's interest (including mine). But the best part of this book was watching the relationship develop between Jeremy and his dragon. It was the depth of this relationship that made the book's ending so poignant. This book is also very well written, which made it a pleasure to read aloud.I'm not good at judging the appropriate age range, but I think that this book would be good for almost all elementary school kids. We highly recommend it!
Yoshikawa on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
It's been very long since I've read this, but I remember it being good.
Storytellermary More than 1 year ago
Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher by Bruce Coville I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was fun to enter the mystical world of dragons, telepathically communicating with pictures and colors, flying above the world, invisible to those who have no business with dragons. The real-world problems of schools rang true. Boys and girls learning to be friends, just people with things like books and art in common reminded me of a friend who said she knew when 7th grade boys began to notice girls because they started carrying combs and walking around instead of through puddles. I saw truth in Jeremy’s despair at being hated by his art teacher (the only subject he liked). I knew many students who put up with many less wonderful aspects of school mostly because of their art or music classes. I also remember a student who complained that I hated him. I finally took him out into the hall where I told him that I did NOT hate him and that no one should hate him because he was a good person. Sometimes we just need to be reassured. Helpful librarians have also filled my life, and I will end with Miss Priest’s lesson: Nothing you love is ever really lost.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved reading this book. It was one of the only books that kept me hooked. If you like dragons and fantisy I think you should definitly read this book.:) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this as a kid and I loved it. Great for kids.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was my favorite book in my childhood. I loved it so much! I highly reccomend this book to people of all ages because it is so incredibly magical!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is so good I did not think it was going to be good when I bought it. It is worth it. Buy it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book my 5th grade teacher read it to us almost ever day you must read it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
(Okay, the results at my house are flippin' around like crazy so go to 'the castle' whatever res that is titled"Tuesdays at the castle.")
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Bruce Coville is amazing. Magic shop books still make me want to turn down the strange street and find Elives Magic Shop. And would give anything to go doaring eith Tiamat.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this book as a child and several times in my teen years. It has always proven to be a good friend even after all these years. It is easy enough for a child in elementary to pick up, yet still adventurous enough for the kid that hides in all of us. Even if you don't read it yourself, it is a wonderful story of friemdship and responsibility for your children!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book so much! Everyone should read it! It is very sad at the end but it still is a good book. I encourge everyone to try it even if dragons are not their thing. I hope enjoy it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is in the annual Battle of The Books competition! For those who don't know what that is, it's a contest between a few teams and they all read the 4 books they were asigned. Then, approximately 1 month later, the principal asks each team questions about the books. Theu do this 3 times, and whichever team has the highest score added up from all 3 battles goes to the district battle to represent our school!!!!!!!!!!!!! As of now, my team is in 1st place! Thanks for reading!
ArMason More than 1 year ago
Jeremy Thatcher Dragon Hatcher is a timeless story of a curious boy that learns a lesson in responsibility and priorities. This book was read aloud to my third grade class and it is a tale that has stuck with me through out my school years. I just did an observation of a classroom in December of 2012 in a third grade classroom, about halfway through the day guess what book i find out the teacher is reading to their students? These students enjoyed the story of Jeremy and Tiamat just as much as I did as a child and cant wait so someday read this book to my own students! This book teaches its readers about friendship, and learning the balance between curiosity and responsibility . I recommend Jeremy Thatcher Dragon Hatcher to anyone who has not read this book and to all those who have to read more books from Bruce Coville's Magic Shop Series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have this book in real life and it is so good. U should get it if considering and all the other books 2 there so good i must say that the authour writes good books.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was one of the first fantasy novels I read as a kid and it had remained one of my all time favorites. Bruce Coville is an amazing author and will always be dear to my heart. Also check out Jennifer Murdleys Toad and The Unicorn Chronicles. Hell, don't stop there, read everyhing hes written.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ok so i read tgis forever ago and i still love the thrill. It may be a little kid book but it is pure awesomeness. Im 13. So there.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
wonderful and magical. I read this when I was a child and its one of the reasons I grew to love dragons so much .I love all of Bruce Coville's books but this one and the Unicorn Chronicles Series are my favorites.