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Monday, March 15, 2010

24. How to Train Your Dragon, Book 1 by Cressida Cowell



Title: How to Train Your Dragon
Series: How to Train Your Dragon, Book 1
Author: Cressida Cowell
Copyright: 2003
Pages: 213
ISBN: 9780316085274
Publisher: Little Brown and Company
Author Website:
Twitter: @littlebrown
Format: Paperback
Rating: 3/5 stars
Finished: 3-15-10
Challenge: 100 Books 10

From Amazon:
Chronicles the adventures and misadventures of Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III as he tries to pass the important initiation test of his Viking clan, the Tribe of the Hairy Hooligans, by catching and training a dragon. Now available in paperback

I'm looking forward to the release of the upcoming Dreamworks movie, How to Train Your Dragon, and when I found out it was based on a series of YA books, I thought I'd give the first one a try when I found it at the bookstore the other night. Well, first off, based on what the previews look like for the movie and what the actual book is about, I'm going to have to assume that the movie is loosely based on the books.

Anyway, the book was fun. We follow the (mis)adventures of Hiccup as he tries to train his dragon, Toothless, in order to pass the initiation to become a full-fledged member of his Viking tribe. To make matters worse, not only is he the son of the current chief, but he is also a rather un-Vikingish Viking. He has taken time to study the dragons and feels that the current method of dragon training, yelling at them, is not the best method to take with them, and in his studies has learned to speak Dragonese and tries to train his dragon through more civil means, which is generally frowned upon by the usual Viking laws.

Basically, there are several morals to the story, that violence isn't necessarily always the answer (even though these are Vikings, so violence is necessary sometimes, after all), that family needs to come first, and that just because you are labeled as being plain and useless doesn't mean that's who you are and that you can prove yourself useful and rise above the labels placed on you by others. The story wasn't challenging in any way but still fun and the use of exaggerated fonts in the story to add extra emphasis was amusing. I don't think that I'll actually be buying anymore from the series, but if I find them at the library I'd probably pick them up.

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