|The Fire Within|
|Published by||Orchard Books|
| Preceded by|
| Followed by|
This is the first book in The Last Dragon Chronicles.
The Fire Within begins with David Rain, a man recently out of college, looking for a home. He winds up becoming a tenant at the Pennykettle household. Upon his entering, he sees clay dragons all over the house. Each one looking basically the same, but each one with sepeerate individual features. Some have big ears, some have a hand bag, and others have color-schnging leaves around their neck.
But David notices something. Everyday the dragons change positions, but he never sees anyone moving them. Eventually he makes his own dragon, which he dubs "Gadzooks". Elizabeth Pennykettle, the creator of most of the dragons and owner of the house, spends many hours bringing Davids dragon "to life". David can only wonder what that means.
Meanwhile, Elizabeth's daughter, Lucy, befriends a squirrel in the backyard. Despite everyone thinking that it is just another squirrel, Lucy senses that this squirrel is different. After countless hours of observation, Lucy determines the squirrel is blind. She tries to guide it to the library garden, with all the other squirrels, but disaster strikes, devastating the whole Pennykettle household.