Pages Breathing Fire: 10 Books About Dragons

Dragons, dragons, dragons – so many writers have written about them in one form or another. Here’s ten books featuring dragons for fellow lovers of the form.

  1. R.A. MacAvoy’s Tea With the Black Dragon (Kindle version) features urban fantasy and an ancient Buddhist dragon in search of spiritual teaching. Two of my favorite characters of all time occur in the form of the dragon and his teacher, Martha. There’s a sequel, Twisting the Rope (Kindle version) but it doesn’t quite live up to the magic of the first book.
  2. James Maxey’s trilogy, Bitterwood (Kindle version), Dragonforge (Kindle version) and Dragonseed (Kindle version),. This unique take on dragons has characters engaging enough to make you want to follow them forever.
  3. Tooth and Claw (Kindle version) by Jo Walton, is an awesome novel of manners featuring dragons. Smart and funny.
  4. Naomi Novik has taken dragons and mashed them up with Horatio Hornblower in her Temeraire series: In His Majesty’s Service (Kindle version), His Majesty’s Dragon (Kindle version), Throne of Jade (Kindle version), Black Powder War (Kindle version), Empire of Ivory (Kindle version), Victory of Eagles (Kindle version), and Tongues of Serpents (Kindle version).
  5. I first encountered Gordon R. Dickson’s The Dragon and the George (out of print and no Kindle version) in high school. This story of life from a dragon’s point of view is a solid fantasy read and one of the classics.
  6. No list like this would be complete without Anne McCaffrey’s Pern novels, which feature not just dragons but miniature ones in the form of fire lizards. My favorite of the books remain the Harper Hall trilogy, Dragonsong (no Kindle version), Dragonsinger (no Kindle version), and Dragondrums (no Kindle version).
  7. Another classic is J.R.R. Tolkein’s The Hobbit (Kindle version), in which the dragon Smaug plays a crucial role.
  8. A stuffed dragon is one of the entrancing side characters of Charmed Life (only available in Kindle version) by Diane Wynne Jones. All of Jones’ Chrestomanci books (or anything by her, really) are worth picking up.
  9. Michael Swanwick’s The Iron Dragon’s Daughter (no Kindle version) and The Dragons of Babel (Kindle version) feature gritty industrial dragons in one of the greatest fantasy settings of all time, full of danger and delight.
  10. Last but certainly not least, many of us are looking forward to George R.R. Martin’s Dances with Dragons (no Kindle version listed yet).
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About Cat

Cat Rambo lives, writes, and teaches by the shores of an eagle-haunted lake in the Pacific Northwest. Her 200+ fiction publications include stories in Asimov's, Clarkesworld Magazine, and the magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction. Her story, "Five Ways to Fall in Love on Planet Porcelain," from her collection Near + Far (Hydra House Books), was a 2012 Nebula nominee. Her editorship of Fantasy Magazine earned her a World Fantasy Award nomination in 2012. She is the current President of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA). She is currently working on Exiles of Tabat, the third book of the Tabat Quartet. A new story collection, Neither Here Nor There, appears from Hydra House this fall.
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