How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell

How to Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell

Genre: Juvenile Fiction, Fantasy
Series: #1 in the How to Train Your Dragon series
Publisher: Hachette Audio
Publication Date: 2003 for the book, 2006 for this audio edition
Length: 3 hours, 30 minutes
Read by: David Tennant
Source: Library

The Short Version:
Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III is a young Viking boy who manages to go from being known as “Hiccup the Useless” to being a hero.

Why I Read It:
I’d heard that this was a fun kids series and when I discovered that David Tennant narrated it I had to get it from the library.

The Book:
From the publisher:

Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III is a truly extraordinary Viking hero known throughout Vikingdom as “the Dragon Whisperer” … but it wasn’t always so. Travel back to the days when the mighty warrior was just a boy, the quiet and thoughtful son of the Chief of the Hairy Hooligans. Can Hiccup capture a dragon and train it without being torn limb from limb? Join the adventure as the small boy finds a better way to train his dragon and becomes a hero!

Chronicles the adventures and misadventures of Hiccup Horrendous Haddock the Third 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.

My Thoughts:
I do enjoy listening to the occasional children’s series on audio. So far the most successful choices have been those narrated by the amazing Jim Dale. When I heard that David Tennant narrated the How to Train Your Dragon series I decided to give it a try because I’d heard it was a fun series.

Let me say this. Before I’d even finished listening to the first CD of this book I went back to the library and got not only the next two books in CD format but I also picked up a print copy of this book so I could reread parts when I got home and also so I could see the illustrations,

Illustration from How to Train Your Dragon

David Tennant does a simply fabulous job of narrating this series!

Yes, it’s a middle grade book and the target audience is 8-12 years old but my inner 9 year old had a great time. I plan to make The Hubster listen to this on our next road trip because his not so inner 8 year old boy fits right into the target audience for this book.

I didn’t even mind the sound effects and music between chapters because while those things are normally a distraction for me they fit with the style and typical audience,

The story was fun and simply a delight for my commute and running errands time for listening in the car. I didn’t even mind traffic problems because I was giggling so much. I loved the character names, and the story. I learned some new insults that I’d like to try to work into my everyday conversation.

You shut up or I will tear you limb from limb and feed you to the gulls you winkle-hearted seaweed-brained limpet eating pig.

The books are short so they’re quick listens and for me they’ll make nice breaks between my typical audio mystery fare.

3.5 stars Rating 3.5/5 for the book

4.5 stars Rating 4.5/5 for the narration

SoundBytes is a weekly roundup of audio book reviews hosted by Jen at Devourer of Books.