Jim Button and Lucas the Engine Driver

Age 6

272 pages

173 x 245 mm


Michael Ende, F. J. Tripp, Mathias Weber

Jim Button and Lucas the Engine Driver

One day, the island of Lummerland gets a new inhabitant: the postman brings a mysterious-looking parcel with an illegible address on it. In the parcel there is little black boy and they call him Jim. When Jim Button, the boy, gets a little bigger, the island becomes too small for everyone living there. This is why, in the dead of night, Lucas the engine driver and his best friend, Jim, leave the island with Emma the train engine, who has been made into a boat. After a long time at sea, they arrive in Ping, the capital city of Mandala. They want to visit the emperor but are not allowed into the imperial palace.

They discover that Princess Li Si has disappeared and the emperor is consumed by grief for his daughter. Jim and Lucas set out to look for Li Si. They know she is in the dragon town of Kummerland on the other side of the mountains they call the Crown of the World, with Mrs Mahlzahn at number 133 Old Street, "3rd floor, left". Jim learns that when he arrived on Lummerland he was also in a parcel addressed to Mrs Mahlzahn.

During their long journey to the dragon town, the two friends have all sorts of adventures: they cross the dangerous Valley of Dusk, get to the "World's End" desert, make the acquaintance of another bogus giant and, in the Land of the Thousand Volcanoes, repair dragon Nepomuk's volcano. Nepomuk helps the two engine drivers reach the dragon town of Kummerland and they all make their way to number 133 Old Street, where dragon Mrs Mahlzahn has her school. They find out that a lot of children from all over the world, including the missing Princess Li Si, have been kidnapped by the Wild 13 and sold to Mrs Mahlzahn.

In the end, Jim and Lucas overpower and capture Mrs Mahlzahn and set the children free. Back in Ping, the King of Mandala promises Jim he can take his daughter as his wife. The terrible dragon Mrs Mahlzahn is locked up in a pagoda. She thanks the two friends for just taking her prisoner but not killing her. This allows her to turn into a Golden Dragon of Wisdom. She helps them solve their problems at home by advising them to catch the floating island and taking it back to Lummerland when they return.

After his engagement to Princess Li Si, Jim has a surprise. Emma has had a baby called Molly, so that now Jim has a train engine of his own. He is also looking forward to lots of new adventures with his friend, Lucas.


  • Jim Button and Lucas – in colour at last!
  • The children's book classic by Michael Ende has been a favourite for 55 years

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