Author blog: Andy Shepherd's Top 10 Dragon Books

Updated: Jul 17, 2019

Following the launch of The Boy Who Grew Dragons (read our review here), we are delighted to host a guest post from author Andy Shepherd.

In this blog post, Andy picks out some of her own favourite books featuring dragons.

Ever since Puff, I’ve loved dragons. And of course I’m not alone.

There is magic in dragons. And mystery. Which makes them perfect for readers and authors alike.

Whether it’s the fierce and majestic dragons found in Tolkien and J.K Rowling’s books or the gentler, kinder dragon in Kenneth Grahame’s The Reluctant Dragon, the rather demanding companion of Toothless, or the wonderful accident-prone Zog. There’s a dragon for everyone.

But often dragons are found in fantastical worlds and I wanted that magic in everyday life. Because how cool would that be? To have a dragon in your house…to have a friend who could fly…

So my own twist on the dragon story was to ask, what if all dragons didn’t come from eggs, what if some of them grew on trees? And what if you were lucky enough to find a dragon-fruit tree in your garden and grow your very own dragon?

Then, I wonder what your dragon would be like?

There are so many books about dragons that I love, but here are some of my absolute favourites.

Tell Me A Dragon

Jackie Morris

This might actually be one of my favourite books of all time. Pictures and words here to savour and read time and again. If you love dragons - you will LOVE this. My sons and I got to tell endless stories about our own dragons and it’s a book we come back to even now they are much older.

You can order Tell Me a Dragon online or from your local bookshop or library.

Sylvia and Bird

Catherine Rayner

Another illustrator whose work I adore. I have all her books, but I do have a particular soft spot for Sylvia, a beautiful dragon who finds a friend.

You can order Sylvia and Bird online or from your local bookshop or library.

How To Train Your Dragon Series

Cressida Cowell

This series has been such a joy to share with my family. The stories and artwork have inspired many a creative afternoon. From drawing and painting, to building, to fan fiction, to endless games and role-playing.

​And if you haven't heard David Tennant reading the audio books then you are in for a real treat!

You can order How To Train Your Dragon online or from your local bookshop or library.

The Lonely Sea Dragon

Helen Dunmore and illustrated by Rebecca Cobb.

Another beautiful pairing of story and illustrations.

Two children find a sea dragon lost in a cave,

​'weeping blue and green sea dragon tears'

and set out to help him. But it's not that easy to help a Sea Dragon.

You can order The Lonely Sea Dragon online or from your local bookshop or library.

The Reluctant Dragon

Kenneth Grahame

Like Tomas in 'The Boy Who Grew Dragons', I love that in this story the dragon is the 'goodie'.

Who couldn't fall in love with a poetry-loving dragon?

You can order The Reluctant Dragon online or from your local bookshop or library.

The Emperor of Absurdia

Chris Riddell

Our house is FULL of Chris Riddell books - they are such a joy to read and share.

​This gorgeous story of a little boy who tumbles out of bed into a strange and wonderful land is simply enchanting.

You can order The Emperor of Absurdia online or from your local bookshop or library.


Dugald Steer

The Ology series is one my son pores over and this list would not be complete without the wonderful Dragonology.

​Jam packed full of information/stories/illustrations and surprises!

You can order Dragonology online or from your local bookshop or library.

That's Not My Dragon

Fiona Watt & Rachel Wells

This series was another family favourite when my children were little and our absolute favourite was of course this one!

You can order That's Not My Dragon online or from your local bookshop or library.

Ace Dragon Ltd

Russell Hoban and Quentin Blake

Need I say more?

​These two creating their customary brand of magic together.

​Fabulous fun!

You can order Ace Dragon Ltd online or from your local bookshop or library.

The Dragon Machine

Helen Ward with illustrations by Wayne Anderson

A wonderful story of a lonely little boy who sees dragons everywhere.

You can order The Dragon Machine online or from your local bookshop or library.


Many thanks to Andy Shepherd for sharing these great suggestions with us.

Andy's own dragon story, The Boy Who Grew Dragons, is now available to order online or from your local bookshop or library.

You can read our review here and find a pack of accompanying teachers' materials here.

If you are interested in writing a guest blog post please get in touch here or click here to find out more.


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