When I was a kid, I read this book. I don’t know the author. I don’t know the title. It was a young adult, kids book, something. I believe it was part of a series. It was set in China, or a fantasy world with a real chinese flavor. There were dragons. (Ha! That narrows it down!) I believe they may have had pearls in their heads or something. I have an impression of salt flats or salt deserts or something. There was a hero(ine?) who was a kid, who had to serve the villain, some kind of witch.
I distinctly recall that the witch was disposed of by the interesting gambit of hiding a magical unbreakable grows-really-big-on-command chain in her bowl of noodles, which she swallowed and choked upon.
The odds of my ever locating this book are nearly nonexistant, I realize, but I’ve got a bunch of readers and a lot of ’em read the same weird stuff I do, and when I mentioned “Encyclopedia of Legendary Creatures” the mail rolled in for two weeks from people traumatized by it, so I figure, what the hell.
In other news, James tried to make the Irish whiskey steak again, and accidentally set the kitchen on fire. No real damage–warped the plastic stove display a little, but not badly. The filter in the hood caught fire, which was the real problem, not the steak. James was flinging wet towels around and yelling “For the love of God, why is the stove FLAMMABLE?!” a question of great validity that I couldn’t answer, even if I hadn’t been fanning the smoke out frantically. Went and got a pizza. Tomorrow will go get a fire extinguisher. Stupid not to have one in the house anyway.