Smaug’s Kind: A List of Dragon Books

In honor of Bilbo Baggins and his birthday this week (September 22), we have a book list celebrating his defeat of Smaug, the great dragon: it’s full of dragon books! Most of the dragon books below feature enemy dragons that are defeated; a few feature friendly—or even reluctant—dragons. You’ll find Bilbo himself keeping company with other “Classics” below. Titles are linked to RR reviews where applicable. Enjoy!

Note: Per our usual, titles are listed roughly in ascending age order, although many can be enjoyed by a wide variety of ages. And, as always, we encourage you to read discerningly! Some of the fantasy titles (particularly those for older teens) have some cautions/considerations; we encourage you to read our reviews where applicable and/or do your research with other review sources, too.

Smaug's Kind:
A List of Dragon Books

Spiritual Resources

Revelation (this is the ultimate dragonslayer story!)

NIV Incredible Creatures Bible

The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan (especially recommended for dragon illustrations is The Dangerous Journey by Oliver Hunkin; ages 6 and up as a read aloud; preview images; the newest edition from Moody is also lovely)

The Dragon and the Garden by N. D. Wilson (picture book)

Tales of the Kingdom by David and Karen Mains (dragons + spiritual allegory; ages 8 and up, especially as a read aloud

Dragon Seed by Marty Machowski (middle grades devotional)

The Prince Warriors Series by Priscilla Shirer (middle grades fantasy allegory)

cover of The Dragon Slayer

Folklore and Legends

St. George and the Dragon by Margaret Hodges and illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman (picture book)

The Knight and the Dragon by Tomie DePaola (picture book)

The Dragon Slayer: Folktales from Latin America by Jaime Hernandez (graphic novel; ages 7-10)

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin (ages 8 and up, especially as a read aloud)

Dragons and Dragonslayers by Tim Chester (ages 8 and up; a great read aloud with significant spiritual commentary in the last 3 chapters)

Book of Dragons by E. Nesbit (Deliverers of Their Country, a picture book, is from this compilation; ages 10 and up)

Fierce Wars and Faithful Loves by Edmund Spenser with notes by Roy Maynard (retelling of The Faerie Queene; ages 14 and up)

Beowulf (see list for options!)

cover of John Ronald's dragons

Classics and Biographies

The Reluctant Dragon by Kenneth Grahame and illustrated by San Souci (picture book; look for other versions if San Souci is hard to find)

My Father’s Dragon by Ruth Gannett Stiles (Chapter book, good read aloud, even for fairly young children)

The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C. S. Lewis

The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

John Ronald’s Dragons: the Story of J. R. R. Tolkien by Caroline McAlister (excellent picture book biography)

J. R. R. Tolkien for Kids by Simonetta Carr

cover of Henry and the Chalk Dragon

Contemporary Fantasy and Dragon Stories

Dragon Quest by Allan Baillie (excellent! picture book)

The Dragon by Archibald Marshall (illustrated by Ardizzone/ out of print but excellent!)

The Best Pet of All by David LaRochelle (easy reader; ages 4-8)

The Boy Who Grew Dragons by Andy Shepherd (ages 7-11)

Andrew and the Firedrake by Douglas Wilson (ages 8-12)

The Wingfeather Saga by Andrew Peterson (ages 8+)

Henry and the Chalk Dragon by Jennifer Trafton (ages 8-12)

Bootlace Magician by Cassie Beasley (wyrm versus dragon BUT . . . .; highly recommended; ages 8+)

Fires of Invention by Scott Savage (Cove Series; ages 10-12) 

Handbook for Dragon Slayers by Merrie Haskell (ages 10+)

The Inquisitor’s Tale by Adam Gidwitz (ages 10+)

The Dragon’s Tooth by N D Wilson (ages 10+)

The Goblin’s Puzzle by Andrew Chilton (ages 10-15)

Dragons at Crumbling Castle by Terry Pratchett (short stories; ages 10-14)

Genevieve of Alea by Emma Vanderpol (written by a teenager! Ages 12-15)

The Language of Spells by Garret Weyr (ages 12 & up)

The Enchanted Forest Chronicles (esp. book 4: Talking to Dragons) by Patricia Wrede (ages 12 & up)

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman (note significant considerations for remainder of series; ages 14+)

The Last Dragonslayer by Jasper Fforde (ages 14+) 

Eragon by Christopher Paolini (we have not read the rest of the series; ages 15+)

Readers: what are YOUR favorite dragon stories? Tell us in the comments!

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Betsy Farquhar

Betsy is the Managing Editor at Redeemed Reader. When she reads ahead for you, she uses sticky notes instead of book darts and willfully dog ears pages even in library books. Betsy is a fan of George MacDonald, robust book discussions, and the Oxford comma. She lives with her husband and their three children in the beautiful Southeast.

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5 Comments

  1. Jennifer on September 20, 2021 at 9:35 am

    I recommend the How to Train your Dragon series by Cressida Cowell for kids 8+ and HIGHLY recommend the book Heartless (Tales of Goldstone Wood) by Anne Elizabeth Stengl for ages 12+. This book was reviewed by RR back in 2011 with a less than stellar review, but it’s my favorite redemption story involving a dragon.. it really touched me to the point of tears! I think dragon-loving readers should give it a chance!

  2. Sunshine on September 23, 2021 at 12:09 pm

    My fantasy loving children really like the Dragons in our Midst series by Bryan Davis, and the series beginning with Dragonspell by Donita K. Paul.

  3. Christie on September 22, 2022 at 6:51 pm

    I highly recommend the witty and adventurous Dragon Slippers series by Jessica Day George. Also, not technically a classic dragon, but if your kids like fantasy, Michael Ende’s “The Neverending Story” with Falcor the Luck Dragon is a beautiful and wildly creative epic tale (yes, they based the 1980’s movie on it). (And of course the book is so much richer, although they did a fair adaptation.)

    • Janie Cheaney on September 23, 2022 at 4:05 am

      Christie, thanks for the recommendations! We’ve reviewed some of George’s delightful Castle series, but I had never heard of
      Dragon Slippers. The Neverending Story is a great suggestion too–we should have thought of that one.

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