Books about dragons on a red fiery, background.

Recommended Reads, Trends

It’s the Year of the Dragon! 9 books about our favorite mythical creature


Feb 09, 2024

Although I’m a fantasy reader, I’ve never necessarily been drawn to fantastical animals.

Griffins. Yawn.

Mermaids. Meh.

Centaurs. OK, I guess.

But dragons. Dragons are different. Because dragons are inherently more awesome than everything else. Giant fire-breathing beasts that can fly and have the coolest treasure collections ever. What’s not to love?

It turns out, I’m not alone. There’s nothing hotter (pun absolutely intended) than dragons right now, and they’re SO not just for kids anymore. The publishing world's fully embracing that everyone at every age loves dragons, and you and I, dear readers, are the beneficiaries. And this wonderful trend is pretty perfectly timed, since we're now in the Year of the Dragon in the Chinese zodiac. The time of the dragon is here, and we should all roll with it.

So, where do you go to get your dragon fix? The Libby app, of course! Below are just a few of the great dragon books for kids, teens and adults available from your library. Kick back and enjoy!

How to Catch a DragonHow to Catch a Dragon by Adam Wallace & Andy Elkerton

Legitimately one of the cutest picture book series out there, the How to Catch series covers capturing all sorts of things from elves to turkeys, and this particular book covers the ins and outs of getting yourself a dragon. The kids have to race through a Chinese New Year celebration in pursuit of their dragon, and along the way they learn about the holiday and even pick up a little Mandarin. It’s hard to beat these beautifully illustrated books for a fun time.

Winter TurningWinter Turning by Tui T. Sutherland

This latest graphic novel in the Wings of Fire series sees the young dragon, Winter, needing to find his sister, Icicle, after she runs away from their academy. But Winter won’t have to go off alone, as some of his classmates refuse to let him go on his own. Will they find Icicle? Will they get a second chance to make things right? You’ll want to grab this graphic novel (or the original novel if that’s more your style) to find out!

DragonwatchDragonwatch by Brandon Mull

For all kinds of magical animals, middle grade readers can’t do much better than Brandon Mull’s Fablehaven series. And after the conclusion, Mull launched a new series set in the same world, only this time with a focus on dragons! The first book (and name of the series) is Dragonwatch. After long years of quiet, Celebrant the Just, King of the Dragons, begins to plot with the other dragons to take over the world. This is the sign for the Dragonwatch, a group of wizards, dragon slayers and others to regroup and try to stop the dragon takeover of their world.

The HobbitThe Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

Tolkien’s classic first book from Middle-earth features the beloved Hobbit Bilbo Baggins as he heads off on an adventure with a group of dwarves to the Lonely Mountain where the dragon Smaug sits atop a great fortune, including treasures of the dwarves. Most of you likely know the story, but it’s always worth another read. Also, if you’ve never listened to The Hobbit on audiobook, now’s the time to do it. In recent years, new versions of many of Tolkien’s books have received new audio recordings, read by Andy Serkis, who played Gollum in the Peter Jackson movies, and they’re fabulous! Besides, you know you want to hear him say “Precious” again in that voice, so check this one out ASAP.

MurtaghMurtagh by Christopher Paolini

I was talking to my husband about dragon books recently, as one does, and he said, “What about that kid who wrote Eragon? Well, I guess he’s probably not a kid anymore.” And he’s not! Christopher Paolini is just as popular today as when Eragon was published over 20 years ago when he was just 19 years old. Only now he’s 40, and the latest book in the Inheritance Cycle is Book 5, Murtagh. This book finds Murtagh, the Dragon Rider, and his dragon, Thorn, as outcasts after the toppling of an evil king. But Murtagh senses something malicious lurking, and he and Thorn have to contend with a mysterious witch. This book will reward return readers, but even if you’ve never read this series before, it’s an excellent place to jump in.

Iron FlameFourth Wing and Iron Flame by Rebecca Yarros

You knew I’d have to include these books! Chances are, you’ve either read the first two books of The Empyrean series or you’re already on the holds list. But just in case you have thus far missed the biggest thing happening in the book world right now, I thought I’d remind you that Rebecca Yarros’ BookTok sensation romantasy series has dragons. So if you want some fiery passion to go with your dragons, you just might want to check these books out.

Shards of GlassShards of Glass by Michelle Sagara

Perhaps a bit more off the beaten path is this fantasy mystery that can be read as a standalone in the Chronicles of Elantra series. It’s a magic school story (love those!), and the Chancellor of the school just happens to be a dragon. It’s also the story of two friends who were separated for centuries when the school gets trapped in a different realm. Now reunited, these two must work together to solve the mystery of who started killing students. This is a great book for readers who really want to get lost in thorough worldbuilding.

The Rise of the DragonThe Rise of the Dragon by George R. R. Martin, Elio M. García Jr. & Linda Antonsson

It’s not The Winds of Winter, but it is a return to George R. R. Martin’s Westeros. Set centuries before A Game of Thrones, The Rise of the Dragon is the history of how the Targaryens left Valyria and came to and conquered the Seven Kingdoms. It’s hard to know whether to suggest the ebook or audiobook of this one, though. I mean, the ebook is illustrated, and the artwork is just gorgeous. But the audio is read by Harry Lloyd, who played my favorite Targaryen, Viserys, on Season 1 of Game of Thrones. In either case, for anyone missing this world and/or waiting for the next season of House of the Dragon, this book is an absolute must.

So fly off to a new world on the Libby app with one of these great dragon reads, because these books have never been hotter! (Sorry, I had to do the fire pun one last time.)

*Title availability may vary by region.

About the Author

Shelia Mawdsley did everything from answering questions at the Reference Desk to tech training to running a classic lit book club in her 17 years in public libraries. Now she helps other public libraries make the most of their OverDrive collections. In her spare time, she’s either writing or reading, usually with an opera playing in the background. If you ever run into her, ask Shelia about #WITMonth.


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