It was published in 1942, before the war impacted book production. Forester came up with the premise for the book while he was at home in the Berkeley hills, minding his two boys while his wife Kathleen was away. The younger of the two, 8 year old George, went on a hunger strike; he refused to eat. Forester made up the stories to tell during dinnertime, but would only tell them if George would eat. If George stopped eating, Forester stopped talking mid-sentence. By the time Kathleen returned home and everything returned to normal, there were a number of Poo-Poo stories, and 3 dragons. Life becomes exciting for Harold Heavyside Brown, who is known as Poo-Poo, when he adopts first one, then three dragons.