Books About Mythical Characters

From dragons to unicorns, mythical characters are fascinating creatures! They spark our imagination and provide a perfect backdrop for storybooks. Have your children ever wondered what it’d be like to have a mermaid as a best friend or a dragon as a pet? They can find out with the books on this list! And, because a few dragons do actually exist, you’ll also find some non-fiction books on this list, too.

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The Book of Mythical Beasts and Magical Creatures Stephen Krensky

This 160-page book provides a fascinating introduction to the world of mythology for early elementary children. The text explores the history and cultures behind each mythical figure. From basic ghosts to more complicated characters like the Moon Rabbit, this book stokes children’s imaginations with rich details and stories that will keep them on the edge of their seats. Plus, the illustrations are just as interesting as the characters themselves!

Mythical Beasts Stephanie Warren Drimmer

This is a level 3 reader from National Geographic Kids that’s packed with fun facts and information. There are more than 100 easy-to-read tidbits about all sorts of mythical creatures! Kids will learn the stories behind some of the most popular characters from the mythical world, but they’ll also read about a few real-life creatures. Unicorns, mermaids, and kraken are just a few of the mythical characters in this book. Children who are beginning to read on their own will love to share this book with you! Yoounger children will love the read-aloud!

Me and My Dragon David Biedrzycki

What would it be like to have a pet dragon? This book follows a young boy who is considering just that! He imagines that he and his dragon Sparky would go on lots of adventures together: show-and-tell at school, a checkup at the pediatrician, trick-or-treating on Halloween. The dragon would even eat his brussels sprouts at dinner! This is a laugh-out-loud book that preschoolers and early elementary children will love!

Dragonology: The Complete Book of Dragons Dr. Ernest Drake

This encyclopedia-like book deserves a place on the bookshelf of every young dragon enthusiast! The entire book is written in a non-fiction fashion, blurring the lines between fact and fantasy. It’s all based on the “research” of a 19th-century dragonologist. There are diagrams, foldout pages, maps, and illustrations that add to the intrigue of the book. There’s even an appendix that features instructions for setting up a dragonology lab. Elementary kids will want to study this book over and over again!

Real Dragons! Jennifer Szymanski

Learn about real dragon-like creatures in this co-reading book from National Geographic. Each page spread features one side for young kids to read and one side for adults to read. Flying lizards, komodo dragons, and Gila monsters are just a few of the featured creatures. Plus, every page is filled with engaging photography from National Geographic. This book is perfect for all children!

There’s a Dragon In Your Book Tom Fletcher

This interactive story invites children to save their book from the adorable dragon’s flammable sneezes! The text on each page is minimal, but children will enjoy following this silly story and interacting with every page. Toddlers and preschoolers will ask to read it again and again!

How to Catch a Mermaid Adam Wallace and Andy Elkerton

This edition of the “How to Catch” series takes kids on an adventure under the sea! Follow along as a young girl imagines what it’d be like to have a mermaid as a friend. Before they become friends, she has to catch the mermaid! She’ll start on the beach, luring the mermaid with a shiny treasure. The colorful illustrations feature sharks, shells, and even a sunken ship. Young ocean fanatics in preschool and early elementary will enjoy this book!

Never Let a Unicorn Scribble! Diane Alber

A little girl has a pet unicorn, but everybody warns her, “Never let a unicorn scribble!” The little girl is incredibly curious about this, so she tries a few things to get to the bottom of it. Does the unicorn not know what a scribble is? Does it not know how to hold a crayon? In the end, there’s a beautiful explosion of color that creates a masterpiece. It’s a magical book with a few silly twists that will keep young kids engaged. Read it to your preschoolers.

Unicorn Day Diana Murray

All of the unicorns are gathering for a special Unicorn Day. It’s a time of celebration, singing, and fun! As they carry on with the party, the unicorns realize one of them is an imposter. It’s a horse, not a unicorn! But instead of making him leave, the unicorns welcome him and invite other non-unicorns to join in the celebration too. This is a fun story of friendship for preschoolers.

Flower Fairies: Magical Secret Garden Cicely Mary Barker

How does a fairy get to the secret garden? Follow along in this book to see how Lily, a new flower fairy, makes her way to this magical place. She’ll make lots of friends and visit many enchanted places. The illustrations are the real star of this book! Fairies, butterflies, and flowers pop out of the pages to create a magical experience for young children. Read it with preschoolers and early elementary kids.

Abominable: Meet Everest! Tina Gallo

This book provides an adapted version of DreamWorks’ movie “Abominable.” In it, Everest the Yeti and a young girl named Yi become friends. Yi is determined to help Everest find his family and get back home. But, they’ll have to outsmart a few people who are after Everest. It’s a feel-good story that’s perfect for preschoolers.

The Water Horse Dick King-Smith

This chapter book is set in the 1930s and tells a fantasy story about the origin of the Loch Ness monster. The action begins when a brother and sister find an egg. It hatches the next morning, but they aren’t sure what kind of creature it is until their grandpa tells them it’s a sea monster. It grows and grows and grows until it’s too big to stay in their house! It’s a relatively short chapter book, making it a nice read-aloud for preschoolers and early elementary kids.

The Complete Grimm’s Fairy Tales Jacob Grimm and Wilhelm Grimm

This volume offers nearly 800 pages worth of fairy tales from the Grimm brothers. You’ll read Rapunzel, Hansel and Gretel, Cinderella, and several other lesser known stories. Every tale includes mystery, intrigue, action, and magic. Some are quite brief and others are a few pages long. Take your time and read one or two each night with your elementary children. (Keep in mind, these are the classic versions of the fairy tales and not the romanticized Disney versions. We recommend reading the story on your own before reading it with your children.)

My Father’s Dragon Ruth Stiles Gannett

This fantastical tale follows Elmer Elevator and a dragon from Wild Island. The dragon has been captured! It’s up to Elmer to cross a dangerous river, devise a few clever tricks, and rescue the dragon from captivity. The book is full of whimsical storytelling and mild action that’s perfect for a first chapter book read-aloud.

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