Recommended fantasy books with dragons

The dragon first appeared in literature thousands of years ago, with the Book of Job being one of the earliest recorded instances. As the 19th century drew to a close Lewis Carroll's Jabberwocky in Through the Looking-Glass (1871) and Kenneth Grahame The Reluctant Dragon (1898) brought the scaled, reptilian back into favour. And then, in 1937, one JRR Tolkien wrote a children’s book called The Hobbit, which featured an especially greedy and cunning dragon called Smaug and the professor’s great friend CS Lewis featured an elderly, unnamed dragon in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (Narnia Chronicles, 1952). Among the best-known books to feature dragons in the last fifty to sixty years have been Ursula Le Guin’s Earthsea Saga (1964-), Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonriders of Pern series (1966), Michael Ende’s The Neverending Story (1979), RA Salvatore’s Forgotten Realms novels (1988–present), Robin Hobb’s Realm of the Elderlings series (1995), George RR Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series (1996–present), JK Rowling’s Harry Potter series (1997–2007), Christopher Golden’s Strangewood (1999), Christopher Paolini The Inheritance Cycle (2002-) and Naomi Novik’s Temeraire series (2006-).

Recommended Reading

Wizardwood, a sentient wood. The most precious commodity in the world. Like many other legendary wares, it comes only from the Rain River Wilds. But how can one trade with the Rain River Traders when only a liveship, fashioned from wizardwood, can negotiate the perilous waters of the Rain River? A liveship is a difficult ship to come by. Rare an...

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Recommended reads by sub-genre

Select a sub-genre below to see which books we highly recommend.

High fantasy books
High fantasy

Fantasy set in an alternative, fictional world
Epic fantasy books
Epic fantasy

Fantasy with epic characters, themes, and plot
Heroic / Sword and Sorcery fantasy books
Heroic / Sword and Sorcery

Fantasy with heroic adventures
Contemporary / Urban fantasy books
Urban fantasy

Fantasy narrative with an urban setting
Historical fiction / Alternate history books
Historical fantasy / fiction

Historical fiction with fantasy elements
Parallel worlds.
Parallel universe

Fantasy set in parallel worlds
Science fantasy / Speculative fiction books
Science / Speculative

Draws elements from both science fiction and fantasy
Children's fantasy books
Children's Fantasy

Fantasy for ages up to 12
Young adult fantasy books
Young Adult

Fantasy for ages 12+
Adult fantasy books
Adult Fantasy

Fantasy for ages 18+
Dystopian fiction
Dystopian / Post-Apocalyptic

Fiction set in dark, nightmarish worlds
Image derived from Mark Lawrence's Emperor of Thorns book cover
Monarchy / Empire

Fantasy books with empires at their core
Gothic fiction books
Gothic Fiction

Fiction with elements of fear, horror, death, gloom and romance
Vampire fiction
Vampire Fiction

Fiction with vampiric characters
Werewolf fiction
Werewolf Fiction

Fiction with werewolf characters
Steampunk books

Fiction with steam-powered machinery rather than advanced technology
Dragon fiction
Dragon Fiction

Fiction with the legendary, scaled, fire-breathing creatures
Fantasy books featuring dragons
Wizards / Magicians

Fantasy with wizards, witches, magicians, sorceresses...
Lore, Legend and Mythology
Lore, Legend and Mythology

Inspired by ancient folklore and mythology
Fantasy books featuring dragons
Military Fantasy

Fantasy books focusing on mailtary life
Praetorian cover image
Roman historical fiction

Explore the ancient Roman Empire
An image of Darth Bane, taken from the cover of a Star Wars book
Star Wars

Books exploring the galaxy of the ever-popular franchise
An image taken from the front cover of The Wind in the Willows
Animal fantasy books

Fantasy with sentient animals
An image taken from the front cover of Giant Thief.
The Thief / Assassin

Fantasy books starring the thief or the assassin
An image taken from the front of hush, hush.

Fiction exploring beyond the laws of nature
An image portraying manga art.

Japanese comic books and graphic novels
House of Small Shadows

Liked to be scared? These books will do that...
An image portraying comic fantasy.
Comic Fantasy

For the reader who loves to laugh
An image of J. R. R. Tolkien
Inspired by Tolkien

Love Lord of the Rings? Now try these...
The Time Traveller's Almanac

The best science fiction and fantasy anthlogies