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Here Be Dragons

25 Books Starring Dragon-Loving Mighty Girls

From devoted friends to wise teachers to ferocious beasts, you'll find dragons of all varieties in our collection of Mighty Girl dragon stories!

When you talk about fantastic creatures, some people picture fairies, or unicorns, or elves — and some picture dragons! Your Mighty Girl may imagine herself as the daring soul who cows the dragon by force of arm or clever wit, or she might picture herself with a devoted dragon friend, flying to new heights and learning arcane secrets. With versions of dragons in almost every culture, filling every role from devoted mentors to ferocious beasts, there’s probably a dragon to suit any Mighty Girl’s dream.

So if your Mighty Girl loves all things draconic, she’ll love the products we’re featuring in this blog! Here, she’ll find dragon stories of all kinds — from those based in folklore and fairy tale to those dreamed up by modern imagination — as well as great dress-up options for when her own imagination takes over.

So get ready for some adventure — here there be dragons!

Mighty Girl Books About Dragons

The Paper Bag Princess

The Paper Bag Princess

Written by: Robert N. Munsch
Illustrated by: Michael Martchenko
Recommended Age: 3 - 8

When a ferocious dragon destroys Princess Elizabeth’s castle and princess clothes — and carries off her fiance Prince Ronald — she’s left with only a battered crown, a paper bag dress... and a very determined nature. She’s not strong enough to battle the dragon, but she is smart enough to outwit him. Your Mighty Girl will cheer as Elizabeth finds the perfect way to deal with that troublesome beast.

Lovabye Dragon

Lovabye Dragon

Written by: Barbara Joosse
Illustrated by: Randy Cecil
Recommended Age: 3 - 7

A lonely little girl dreams of a dragon friend — and in a cave not far away, the friendly dragon imagines what it would be like to play with a little girl. The girl’s silvery tears form a trail that leads two new friends together! They sing, cavort, and whisper to one another — and, eventually, snuggle in to sleep. After all, there’s no better nighttime companion than a lovabye dragon. This charming story of forever friends is accented with beautiful, soft, fairy tale inspired illustrations. Fans of this lovely story will also enjoy the sequels, Evermore Dragon and Sail Away Dragon.

Raising Dragons

Raising Dragons

Written by: Jerdine Nolen
Illustrated by: Elise Primavera
Recommended Age: 4 - 8

A little girl finds an odd egg on her “Sunday-before-supper walk” — which hatches a green dragon she immediately names Hank. Raising a dragon isn’t simple, even if Hank proves to be very helpful around the farm, and when Hank starts to attract too much attention, she has to escort him home to the Island of Dragons to live out his days. However, a good dragon keeper is hard to find, and it’s not long before a whole wheelbarrow full of eggs shows up from the island. A delightful story with a folksy tone, this one is sure to be a favorite.

The Worst Princess

The Worst Princess

Written by: Anna Kemp
Illustrated by: Sara Ogilvie
Recommended Age: 4 - 8

Princess Sue is determined to be a proper princess — which means waiting for her prince to come to rescue her. He certainly takes his sweet time, though! And when he does arrive, he's a bit too...traditional for the feisty, smart, and independent Sue. She was looking forward to a bit more adventure, not just sitting around in a castle for the rest of her life. So Sue comes up with an idea: she invites the fire-breathing dragon to tea, and the two of them strike a bargain that gives Sue a happily-ever-after that actually makes her happy! This cheeky rhyming story is full of humor and fun.

Dragons and Marshmallows

Dragons and Marshmallows

Written by: Asia Citro
Illustrated by: Marion Lindsay
Recommended Age: 6 - 9

When Zoey finds a glowing photo, she learns an amazing secret: magical animals are real — and they come to her backyard for help when they're sick or injured. Her first patient is a sick baby dragon that Zoey names Marshmallow. Zoey and her cat Sassafras need to find out what's ailing Marshmallow quickly, so they'll have to apply the scientific method to the problem! This new early chapter book series has the perfect mix of science, mystery, and magical creatures. Fans of this volume will want to check out Monsters and MoldMerhorses and Bubbles, and Caterflies and Ice.

Princess Pulverizer: Grilled Cheese and Dragons

Princess Pulverizer: Grilled Cheese and Dragons

Written by: Nancy Krulik
Illustrated by: Ben Balistreri
Recommended Age: 6 - 9

Princess Serena (or, as she prefers to be known, Princess Pulverizer) wants to be a knight, but her father, King Alexander of Empiria, isn't sure that Serena knows how to behave valiantly. So he presents her with a challenge: if she can complete eight good deeds during a Quest of Kindness, she can go to Knight School. Princess Pulverizer has a lot to learn, but with a timid knight and a burping dragon as new friends, she's confident she can prove her mettle and win the day! This hilarious series opener full of wacky adventure and delightfully twisted fantasy tropes is perfect for fans of The Princess in Black who have advanced to the next reading level.

Princeless

Princeless

Princess Adrienne Ashe’s parents lock her in a tower, guarded by a dragon, on her sixteenth birthday — so she can be rescued by the handsome prince, of course. But Adrienne isn’t willing to sit on her hands and wait, so when she finds a sword in her tower, Adrienne recruits the dragon, Sparky, and the new friends set out to rescue Adrienne’s sisters, each of whom is locked in her own tower. A swashbuckling tale of adventure with tongue-in-cheek references to TV and comic tropes about princesses, this graphic novel is sure to be a favorite with both kids and their parents. Fans can find more of Adrienne's adventures in our Princeless Collection.

The Dragon With A Chocolate Heart

The Dragon With A Chocolate Heart

Written by: Stephanie Burgis
Recommended Age: 9 - 12

When Aventurine the dragon is lured by the delicious aroma of a cup of enchanted hot chocolate, she gets transformed into a weak, vulnerable 12-year-old girl! The trade off is that she has a new passion — and the chance to learn to make the confection herself. But can Aventurine figure out the human world well enough to reconcile her human and dragon identities...and can a mere chocolate apprentice save the kingdom? It turn out that combining magic, chocolate, and dragons makes a recipe for a delicious story! For more adventures in Aventurine's world, check out the companion, The Girl With The Dragon Heart.

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon

Written by: Grace Lin
Recommended Age: 8 - 12

Minli wishes she understood why her hardworking family struggles to keep body and soul together. Her father tells her stories of the Old Man in the Moon, who knows the answers to all of life’s questions, so Minli decides to find him and ask how she can change her family’s fortunes. Along the way, she meets a flightless dragon, who joins her on her journey. But when she meets the Old Man in the Moon and has the chance to ask a question, perhaps it will be her concern for Dragon that really changes the family’s fate. This 2010 Newbery Honor book has the feeling of a folktale, and is accented by Lin’s exquisite full-color illustrations.

Iron Hearted Violet

Iron Hearted Violet

Written by: Kelly Barnhill
Illustrated by: Iacopo Bruno
Recommended Age: 8 - 12

The main character of this story discovers that a dragon can be a devoted ally. When lonely Violet accidentally frees a legendary evil being called Nybbas, she thinks she’s brought doom to everyone she loves. But she and her friend Demetrius realize that she might just be able to save it — with the help of an ancient, scarred dragon, the last in the world. After all, stories have their own power, and so do dragons... This fascinating fantasy story with a suitably intimidating villain provides a new perspective on dragon myths.

Dragon's Milk

Dragon's Milk

Written by: Susan Fletcher
Recommended Age: 8 - 12

Kaeldra’s foster sister’s life is threatened by a deadly disease, and dragon’s milk is the only thing that might save her. Kaeldra’s family has the knack of speaking with dragons, but Kaeldra won’t know if she’s inherited the trait until she’s in the dragon’s cave. She dares the journey — with success — but Kaeldra’s task becomes more complicated when the mother dragon is slain and she has to bring three defenseless draclings home. Any girl who’s dreamed of having her own baby dragon will love this story. Young readers can continue Kaeldra's story in Flight of the Dragon Kyn, Sign of the Dove, and Ancient, Strange, and Lovely.

Handbook for Dragon Slayers

Handbook for Dragon Slayers

Written by: Merrie Haskell
Recommended Age: 8 - 12

Princess Tilda isn't entirely upset when political upheaval sends her fleeing her kingdom — the bookish and club-footed princess would prefer to study, and maybe even author a book someday. But in her travels with two would-be dragon slayers, Tilda will do things she never imagined — and discover that dragons are more than they appear. Her change of heart will also change her kingdom forever. This unique take on the dragon myth is the perfect addition to a truly exciting coming-of-age novel.

Dragon Pearl

Dragon Pearl

Written by: Yoon Ha Lee
Recommended Age: 9 - 12

13-year-old Min's family are fox spirits — but her mother insists that they conceal their abilities. So Min can't wait to follow her older brother, Jun, into the Space Forces and finally get away from home and her boring planet. But when Jun disappears, supposedly deserting his post to search for the legendary Dragon Pearl — a magical jewel that can terraform planets — Min will need all her fox magic to try to clear his name. As she impersonates a dead cadet, Min must look for her brother and avenge the cadet's death with the help of unexpected allies, including the dragon Haneul and the goblin Sujin, all while evading notice by the ship's captain. Part space opera, part Korean mythology, this unique and complex story will enthrall tween readers.

Ember and the Ice Dragons
New!

Ember and the Ice Dragons
New!

Written by: Heather Fawcett
Recommended Age: 9 - 13

12-year-old Ember St. George was born a dragon, but when a magician found her next to her fire-dragon parents, slain for their scales, he transformed her into a human girl to protect her. Unfortunately, her draconic gifts are still present — including an uncontrolled ability to create fire. After an accident, Ember decides to live with her Aunt Myra at a research station in Antarctica, where she even makes a few friends. But when she discovers that there is an annual hunt for ice dragons, can she sabotage the hunt — without her true identity being discovered? This original, rich fantasy is sure to delight middle grade readers who will cheer Ember on.

Legends of the Sky
New!

Legends of the Sky
New!

Written by: Liz Flanagan
Recommended Age: 9 - 13

12-year-old Milla is only a servant, but she's close friends with the children of the household she serves, Isak and Tarya. But in one day, all three children's lives change forever. Isak is told he'll be sent away to learn a trade, while Tarya is directed to marry the Duke's son. And Milla sees a murder — and discovers a stash of four dragon eggs. Dragons and their riders used to rule the skies of Arcosi, but since the Norlanders invaded, they've been hunted nearly to extinction. With bigotry flaring up under the Duke's oppressive rule, can Milla and her friends keep these precious dragons safe? This thrilling fantasy that explores nationalism, immigration, and politics will delight readers who dream of their very own dragon.

Dragon Slippers

Dragon Slippers

Written by: Jessica Day George
Recommended Age: 9 - 14

When her aunt uses the orphan girl Creel as bait for a dragon — and therefore a prince — as a way to drag the family out of poverty, Creel befriends the dragons instead! With encouragement from her new friends, and a gift of a mysterious pair of slippers, Creel moves to the city and opens a dress shop, only to find herself drawn into a conflict that could spell the end of both the kingdom and the dragons. With an epic world, exciting action, and vivid description, this book is sure to captivate young readers. Creel (and the dragons’) story also continues in the sequels, Dragon Flight and Dragon Spear.

The Girl Who Drank The Moon

The Girl Who Drank The Moon

Written by: Kelly Barnhill
Recommended Age: 9 and up

The Elders claim that a witch in the forest demands the sacrifice of one newborn baby a year — but kind and gentle Xan actually rescues the babies abandoned by the Elders. When she accidentally feeds a rescued baby moonlight instead of starlight, she develops powerful magic, so Xan decides to raise this child as her own, alongside her companions the Swamp Monster, Glerk, and a Perfectly Tiny Dragon named Fyrian — who, despite his size, thinks of himself as enormous. As Luna approaches her 13th birthday, she will face new challenges to protect the people she loves. This award-winning fantasy is complex and beautiful, and dragon fans in particular will adore Fyrian's delightful and childlike ways.

Spark

Spark

Written by: Sarah Beth Durst
Recommended Age: 10 - 13

12-year-old Mina's home of Alorria enjoys beautiful weather, thanks to the storm beasts and their bonded human guardians, who ensure the climate stays warm and pleasant. Mina is eager to have a storm beast of her own, but everyone is shocked when she hatches a lightning beast: lightning guardians are normally "brash and loud and brave." Mina may be quiet, but she is brave, which she proves when she and Pixit, her lightning beast, discover that her country's weather comes at a terrible price. A unique fantasy setting and appealing dragon-like storm beasts will leave readers wishing they could leap into Mina's world. For another compelling middle grade fantasy from this author, check out The Stone Girl's Story for ages 9 to 13.

Dealing with Dragons

Dealing with Dragons

Written by: Patricia C. Wrede
Illustrated by: Elise Primavera
Recommended Age: 10 - 14

Cimorene has no interest in being a proper princess, so instead of waiting to be kidnapped by a dragon, she runs away and makes a bargain with one — she’ll keep house as a captured princess would, provided she also gets to be herself and explore her non-princessy interests. Fortunately for Kazul, Cimorene’s dragon, Cimorene also manages to help unearth the wizards’ plot against the dragons in time to stop it... for now. Fans of this book can also pick up the Enchanted Forest Chronicles box set, which includes all four books in the series.

The Hero and the Crown

The Hero and the Crown

Written by: Robin McKinley
Recommended Age: 10 and up

Aerin is the king of Damar’s only child; she should be his heir, but because her mother was a witchwoman from the North, Damarians don’t trust her. But Aerin’s destiny is to battle the black dragon, Maur; meet the wizard Luthe, who gives her both the Blue Sword, Gonturan, and the truth about her mother; and face the evil mage, Agsded, who has taken the Hero’s Crown — the secret strength of Damar itself. This Newbery Award-winning novel features a complex and daring main character and an intriguing fantasy world. Fans of this book can also check out the sequel, The Blue Sword.

The Last Dragonslayer

The Last Dragonslayer

Written by: Jasper Fforde
Recommended Age: 12 and up

In the unUnited Kingdoms, magic used to be the most powerful force there was... but as the dragons have died off, it's been drying up. Today, magic is most often used for mundane tasks, like rewiring a house or delivering pizza via flying carpet. At Kazam Mystical Arts Management, 15-year-old acting director Jennifer Strange is struggling to keep the business afloat when the Seers predict the death of the last dragon — and people think she'll be the Last Dragonslayer. Now, she finds herself fighting off commercial endorsements, driving a Slayermobile... oh, and trying to stop a war between two kingdoms. The result is a magical, sometimes dark, and always hilarious adventure that will delight teen and adult readers alike.

The Last Dragon

The Last Dragon

Recommended Age: 13 and up

Two hundred years ago, the people of Meddlesome defeated the dragons once and for all...or did they? When people and animals start disappearing, the villagers wonder what could be to blame — but when Tansy, the healer's daughter, discovers a plant that only grows in the presence of a dragon, she realizes that one dragon still lives. With the help of an unlikely hero, Tansy will have to do battle with the dragon to keep her village safe. Whimsical verse by Jane Yolen accented with lush artwork by Rebecca Guay bring this draconic adventure to life.

The Harper Hall Trilogy

The Harper Hall Trilogy

Written by: Anne McCaffrey
Recommended Age: 13 and up

Anne McCaffrey's beloved Harper Hall trilogy introduces readers to Menolly — and her nine fire lizards, miniature versions of the dragons that sear Pern's skies of deadly Thread! When Menolly flees a restrictive home and family who refuse to let her pursue her love of music, she stumbles across a clutch of fire lizard eggs, even though the creatures are considered a myth by most people of Pern. When she finds herself bonded to nine of the hatchlings, she has no idea that they will help lead her to a respected place in the Harper Hall as a rare journeywoman! Anyone who has dreamed of a pet dragon of their own will love following Menolly's adventures with her beloved fire lizards.

Seraphina

Seraphina

Written by: Rachel Hartman
Recommended Age: 13 and up

The rational, mathematical dragons, who can take humanoid form, have long warred against their human counterparts — but for now, there is an unsettled peace. Seraphina, a gifted musician, joins the court just before a member of the royal family is murdered — apparently by a dragon. As she is drawn into the investigation, Seraphina struggles with protecting the secret of her connection to both sides of the conflict: her half-dragon heritage. Fans of Seraphina can read the continuation of her story in Shadow Scale.

Tess of the Road

Tess of the Road

Written by: Rachel Hartman
Recommended Age: 14 and up

Tess is the black sheep of her family, always speaking out of turn and getting into trouble. When she drunkenly punches her new brother-in-law at her twin Jeanne's wedding, her parents decide that's the last straw and plan to send her to a nunnery. Instead, she cuts her hair, disguises herself as a boy, and hits the road with her Quigutl, a small dragon species, on a quest to find the rumored World Serpent. Along the way, Tess will confront past trauma, rediscover who she is, and find her own path in the world. This fantasy adventure set in the world of Seraphina and Shadow Scale explores how girls are taught to blame themselves even when others are at fault — and the power of journeys to reveal truths to those who walk them.

The Dragonriders of Pern

The Dragonriders of Pern

Written by: Anne McCaffrey
Recommended Age: 14 and up

Only a few of the people of Pern still believe the stories of deadly Thread falling from the sky — so the dragonriders, Pern's defense against Thread, have dwindled in number, and the populace is completely unprepared. Lessa, the lone queen dragonrider, is determined to find a solution to save her world, but it will take every bit of her strong will — and the power of her bond with her dragon — to fill the Weyrs again in time for Thread's arrival. All three of Anne McCaffrey's original Pern books are collected in this volume, perfect to introduce new readers to the series. Fans of the Pern stories will also enjoy checking out Dragonsdawn, which explores the colonists' arrival on Pern and the creation of their dragon partners.

Additional recommended resources

  • For more Mighty Girl stories featuring mythical creatures, check out our selection of stories based on fairy tales and folktales.
  • For more fantasy stories of starring Mighty Girls, visit our Fantasy section.

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