How to Train Your Dragon 2 dir. Dean DeBlois (2014) Again, there are some nice touches of animation (the sheep!), yet the main storyline and subplots are rather forced in their handling of emotion and relationships. Writer-director Dean DeBlois perhaps missed a trick in not considering Cressida Cowell’s later books for adaptation.
How to Train Your Dragon dir. Chris Sanders & Dean DeBlois (2010) Although bearing little resemblance to Cressida Cowell’s books (especially those earlier in the series), this film adaptation plays out with much the same heart. The ending is emotional without being saccharine and there are some nice touches of animation. Viva the sheep!
How to Train your Dragon by Cressida Cowell; audiobook read by David Tennant (Hodder, 2004) A simple, self-contained beginning to what would become a long and fantabulous series. Cowell introduces us to Hiccup, a brainy Viking in a world of boneheaded heroism and deadly dragons. The story, though predictable in its arc, is magical in the telling.
How to Fight a Dragon’s Fury by Cressida Cowell (Hachette, 2015); audiobook read by David Tennant This epic conclusion to Hiccup’s twelve-book quest brings the Viking-Dragon war to a resounding, heroic, emotional end. Cowell’s ability to linger long in a moment without losing her audience is exceptional. Tennant’s ebullient, multi-voiced narration will cement the series in childhood memory.
How to Betray a Dragon’s Hero by Cressida Cowell (Hachette, 2013); audiobook read by David Tennant High above a publishing landscape devastated by gormless, plotless, half-illustrated fluff, Cowell’s How to Train Your Dragon series soars majestically. How to Betray a Dragon’s Hero is thoughtful, exhilarating, vivid and fabulously fun, with David Tennant putting in a full-on acting performance.