A photo to several children's books for fans of Raya & the Last Dragon against a pink and orange ombre background with purple dragon silhouettes

Image: Alicia Fernandes/Penguin

Released earlier this year, Disney’s Raya & the Last Dragon has proved to be a big hit with its fierce warrior princess Raya, its stunning Southeast Asian-inspired world of Kumandra, and the loveable and goofy water dragon Sisu.

If your kids have officially become dragon nerds and are as obsessed as we are, here is a selection of monstrously good books for all ages and all future Guardians of the Dragon Gem.  

The Neverending Story by Michael Ende (1979)

The Neverending Story follows Bastian Balthazar Bux, a lonely young boy who is definitely not your typical storybook hero. After escaping some bullies at school, Bastian stumbles into an antique bookshop, where he comes across an old book. Through its pages, Bastian is taken on a journey to a mysterious fantasy land known as Fantastica. Here he meets brave warrior Atreyu, fearsome wolf Gmork, the beautiful Empress, and a luckdragon called Falkor. But Fantastica is under threat from The Nothing, a darkness that destroys everything it encounters, and it needs the help of a human child to survive. Is Bastian up to the task? This is a much-loved bestseller with a never-ending appeal to adventure-loving children.

Recommended reading age: 9-12 years old

The Secret Dragon by Ed Clarke (2019)

Just like Raya when she finds Sisu, Mari Jones comes across a dragon whose existence she tries to conceal. All Mari wants is to be a real scientist when she grows up, but she’s still only 11 and has a lot to learn. This includes the fact that dragons are not easy to hide, especially mischievous ones. Mari finds her new friend while fossil hunting on the beach and decides to dedicate her time to find out where it has come from. But as she struggles to look after the cheeky creature, she comes to realise that this is one secret that may prove difficult to keep…

Recommended reading age: 8-12 years old

Billy and the Dragon by Nadia Shireen (2019)

Mini dragon fans will love this sweet tale by Nadia Shireen. A fire-breathing dragon might be the last guest you’d expect at a fancy dress party, but that is exactly who shows up – and what a kerfuffle it causes! Brave Billy is forced to go on a rescue mission when her trusty sidekick Fatcat is kidnapped by the dragon. Follow Billy's adventure in this heart-warming story as she battles to get Fatcat back to where he belongs: right by her side.

Recommended reading age: 2-5 years old

The Lost Island of Tamarind by Nadia Aguiar (2008)

For children longing to visit Kumandra, a trip to Tamarind is just what they need. Following a ferocious ocean storm that claimed the lives of their parents, siblings Maya, Simon and Penny find themselves washed up on a deserted tropical island, Tamarind. The three children can’t help but marvel at the green mountains, pink sandy beaches, and flying fish, but this lost paradise harbours a dark secret. Outsiders have never managed to escape the island before, and with pirates, jaguars, and warring islanders to contend with, will the children find a way to leave or will they be lost to Tamarind forever?

Recommended reading age: 9-12 years old

Given by Nandi Taylor (2020)

Author Nandi Taylor has created a truly inspirational character in Yenni, a fierce warrior princess who – like Raya – will stop at nothing to find a cure for her father’s illness. Follow Yenni as she leaves her home in the kingdom of Yirba to travel to the strange and hostile Empire of Cresh. It is here that our brave hero meets Weysh, a shapeshifter and dragon who claims her as his Given, or destined partner. But Yenni refuses to be tied to anyone, whether they are man or dragon, and will not be distracted from her mission to save her father. This epic magical fantasy is perfect for older kids looking to take a step up from middle-grade stories.

Recommended reading age: 12+ years old

There's a Dragon in Your Book by Tom Fletcher & Greg Abbott (2018)

Do not be fooled by the egg in this book. It may look innocent – however, it is anything but! For you see, this egg has a dragon inside it and once the little fire-breather breaks free, she will cause nothing but trouble. Lots of flapping, poking, and stroking is required to get this baby dragon to fly away and leave you to your peaceful bedtime story. Does your little reader have what it takes to help? This interactive sequel to Tom Fletcher and Greg Abbott’s bestselling There’s a Monster in Your Book is sure to be a hit with any young dragon fans.

Recommended reading age: 2-4 years old

Eragon by Christopher Paolini (2002)

This is another story about the magic that begins after the hatching of a baby dragon. Eragon is a poor farm boy who makes a discovery he hopes will turn his family’s luck around once and for all. However, when the curious stone he finds in the forest actually turns out to contain a dragon, his simple life is changed forever. Eragon enters a dark new world of magic and power struggles, and must take up the mantle of the legendary Dragon Riders in order to survive. Does he have what it takes to save the Empire?

Recommended reading age: 12+ years old

Tales from Moominvalley by Tove Jansson (1962) 

Like in the world of Kumandra, dragons are rarely seen in Moominvalley – there haven’t been any sightings in over 70 years. But then Moomintroll and Snufkin find one! A tiny golden dragon with green paws might seem like the perfect pet, but Moomintroll soon finds that the reality is quite different as the little creature turns out to be quite the handful. Dragons are not meant to be kept in glass jars! The Last Dragon in the World tale is just one of the delightful stories in this entertaining collection about the inhabitants of Moonminvalley.

Recommended reading age: 7-9 years old

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman (2012)

Goredd is a place where humans and dragons who fold themselves into human form strive to live side-by-side peacefully. But this peace is shattered when a member of the royal family is murdered. Fingers are being pointed at a dragon, and Seraphina, a gifted musician who works in the royal court, has been drafted in to solve the mystery. As she uncovers clues to a sinister plot, she finds herself caught in the middle and struggling to protect her own secret. If she is found out, will she have to pay with her life?

Recommended reading age: 12+ years old

Wyrmeweald: Returner's Wealth by Paul Stewart & Chris Riddell (2011)

This is another book aimed at older children, and follows 17-year-old Micah as he enters a land where wyrmes, fabulous dragon-like beasts, reign supreme. Micah might hope to be a hero when he finds and defends a rare whitewyrme egg and its hatchling, but this creature has its own guardian – the beautiful but dangerous Thrace. Micah and Thrace discover they have a strong magnetism and soon use this force to rescue the hatchling and seek vengeance for lost loved ones. This is a high-octane thriller that has it all: romance, colourful characters, and a battle of good versus evil.

Recommended reading age: 12+ years old

Ten Minutes to Bed: Little Dragon by Rhiannon Fielding & Chris Chatterton (2021)

Looking for a dragon-themed bedtime story? Then snap up this countdown tale in the bestselling Ten Minutes to Bed series. Flicker and Flash might just be the sweetest dragons you ever meet. But it’s time for bed and they are not sleepy! The pair use their best tactics to avoid going to bed. But soon the excuses turn to a genuine reason when they find an egg that has lost its mother. Can they get it back safely to where it belongs before it’s time to be tucked up for the night?

Recommended reading age: 2-6 years old

What did you think of this article? Are there any other films or TV series your child is obsessed with? Email editor@penguinrandomhouse.co.uk and let us know.

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