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Saint George and the Dragon
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Saint George and the Dragon

4.16  ·  Rating Details  ·  5,669 Ratings  ·  322 Reviews
This special new paperback edition of St. George and the Dragon commemorates the 25th Anniversary of the Caldecott Award-winning picture book. Hodges retells an exciting segment from Spenser's The Faerie Queene, in which the Red Cross Knight slays a dreadful dragon that has been terrorizing the countryside for years, bringing peace and joy back to the land. Featuring a fre ...more
Paperback, 32 pages
Published September 4th 1990 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 1984)
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With absolutely gorgeous illustrations by Trina Schart Hyman (detailed to such an extent that they tell the story of the Red Cross Knight's fight with the fearsome dragon as vividly and as intensely as Margaret Hodges' narrative), Saint George and the Dragon is basically the legend of Saint George (and how he became the patron saint of England) as adapted from a section of Sir Edmund Spenser's epic The Faerie Queene. A bit long-winded and due to textual density and length thus more suitable for ...more
Feb 20, 2008 Aaron rated it it was amazing
I like when he fights the dragon.
Shanna Gonzalez
Aug 20, 2009 Shanna Gonzalez rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-04-08
In this retelling of a segment from Spenser's Faerie Queen, Saint George, the Red Cross Knight, is guided by the lady Una to her parents' realm, where in a mighty battle he slays a dragon who has terrorized the land. After thus proving himself, he and Una are married.

Hodges' prose distills much action and color into a fairly brief text, sprinkled with quotes from the original work. The adaptation retains a courtly eloquence but should be easily understood by older readers. For younger listeners
Mar 02, 2009 Kathryn rated it really liked it
The story is a bit long-winded, but the illustrations are absolutely gorgeous!!! Definitely a great "old fashioned fairy tale" sort of feel but good for boys who aren't into the princess thing.
Esther Owens
Mar 02, 2016 Esther Owens rated it it was amazing
This is a GREAT book! It refers to the Bible. Jesus (Saint George) crushed Satan (the dragon's) head. Jesus saved The Church (Una), and marries her (meaning The Church). I recommend it to all!
Mili Fay
Mar 27, 2016 Mili Fay rated it liked it
I have heard the basics of the story often, but have never read Saint George and the Dragon in any form. I looked forward to this book.

However, for me the story felt awkward and poorly written. It is almost as if the author tried to keep the poetry of an epic in a simplified children's tale and failed miserably, resulting in awkward phrasing. For example: "Whenever he looked at the brightness of her sunshiny face, his heart melted with pleasure." Or "Heart cannot think what outrage and what crie
Christine Locke
Aug 08, 2012 Christine Locke rated it really liked it
Here's what I LOVE about this book: the illustrations! Wow! Artist Trina Schart Hyman does a fantastic job. I want to touch the dents in George's shield and Lady Una's gowns are to die for. The writing is well-paced and puts the story into terms a child will understand well. However, there is a too much passive voice and use of "had" for my taste. But I know from personal experience that it is difficult to retell an old story without a bit of both.

My grammar-stage son...well, his comment was, "
Lea Lea
May 07, 2014 Lea Lea rated it it was amazing
The rivers run deep in this book. The themes of redemption are woven through it all. Any of Margaret Hodges books should bought not borrowed. I read it over and over.
Oct 20, 2009 Kate rated it really liked it
I'm sure I read this before, but I definitely read this while I was in high school and dreaming up stories about the middle ages, because I distinctly remember drawing the dress that Una wears at the end of the book. I loved the illustrations in this book because there was more to them the longer you looked - they were done like illuminated manuscript pages, and all along the borders there was this allegory comparing George's quest to slay the dragon with a ship sailing across the ocean. I didn' ...more
Meh. The illustrations are pretty--have that old feel to them. But the story dragged for a picture book. Too much text. Too much description. This is what one would get if I wrote a picture book! And that's not a very good thing. I had hoped I'd see glimpses of the legend I saw portrayed in "Lark Rise." But no. And what was up with the pretty castle in the middle? Or the hermit knowing an unknown identity. I suppose legends often don't make sense. But if you're going to write or re-tell a legend ...more
Mackenzie Ford
Feb 29, 2016 Mackenzie Ford rated it it was amazing
Title: Saint George and the Dragon
Author: Margaret Hodges
Illustrator: Trina Schart Hyman
Genre: Legend Book, Concept Book
Theme(s): Legend, England, Fiction, Saint George, Knight, Dragon, Bravery
Opening Line/Sentence:
In the days when monsters and giants and fairy folk lived in England, a nobble knight was riding across a plain.

Brief Book Summary:
This story is about a knight who meets princess Una in the forest and is convinced to go be the brave soul to fight off the dragon in her town. The
Lucy Hall
Title: St. George and the dragon
Author: Margaret Hodges
Illustrator: (Trina Schart Hyman)
Genre: European folktales
Theme(s): bravery, love, rommance
Opening line/sentence: (type directly from text)
Brief Book Summary:
(In the days when monsters and giants and fairy folk lived in England, a noble knight was riding across a plain. He wore heavy armor and carried an ancient silver shield marked with a red cross.)
Professional Recommendation/Review #1: (From the Publisher
Praise for Saint George and the
Kathryn Anne
Saint George and the Dragon retold by Margaret Hodges and illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman is about the journey of a knight and a princess to defeat an evil dragon. The story begins with the two of them traveling on horse and donkey throughout England. The knight was sent on a mission by the Queen of Fairies. They are also traveling with a hermit who helps to lead them on their path. When the knight reaches a beautiful castle and desires to go there, the hermit reminds him of his current missio ...more
Casey Thompson
Sep 09, 2015 Casey Thompson rated it liked it
In this story, "Saint George and the Dragon," retold by Margaret Hodges, a princess named Una requests the Red Cross Knight to slay an evil dragon that has been torturing their town. He faces multiple strenuous battles against the dragon and eventually kills him, saving the town. The king and queen are so pleased with him that they invite him to marry their daughter. It is a classic tale of a princess and hero set during the middle ages. I would have to say that the illustrations are definitely ...more
Apr 06, 2015 Margaretann rated it it was amazing
I can't tell you how REFRESHING it is to read an undisneyfied story about princesses, knights and fairies! This book is just so rich in comparison to all those "Five minute Disney Princess" stories in terms of vocabulary and plot . . . not to mention the detailed and very striking illustrations - works of art!

This story is actually the longest one I've ever read to my daughter - there are about two to three solid paragraphs of text per page/picture and it takes about 20 minutes to read all the
Tayler Pomeroy
Nov 22, 2014 Tayler Pomeroy rated it really liked it
Shelves: t-l307
“Saint George and the Dragon” is retold by Margaret Hodges and illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman. In the story, a beautiful princess named Una requests the Red Cross Knight to slay the dragon terrorizing the beautiful palace on the mountain. The illustrations of the book are beautiful paintings of complete landscapes. The people are proportionally correct and it is obvious that a great deal of effort went into making the picture-perfect paintings look like a fairytale. Each page has a brown boar ...more
Stacey Orlando
Oct 01, 2014 Stacey Orlando rated it really liked it
Saint George and the Dragon is the story about a young man sent out on a quest by the Queen of Fairies. The man is known as The Red Cross Knight and he must fulfill his mission and slay the dragon. He was accompanied on his journey by a donkey, his noble horse, Princess Una, and a dwarf. The young knight endures three treacherous encounters with the evil dragon. When the knight finally slays the dragon after a long and dangerous battle, the townspeople are overjoyed! The king offers Una's hand i ...more
Kathryn Anne Russell
Saint George and the Dragon retold by Margaret Hodges and illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman is about the journey of a knight and a princess to defeat an evil dragon. The story begins with the two of them traveling on horse and donkey throughout England. The knight was sent on a mission by the Queen of Fairies. They are also traveling with a hermit who helps to lead them on their path. When the knight reaches a beautiful castle and desires to go there, the hermit reminds him of his current missio ...more
Sep 05, 2009 Dolly rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: older children and parents reading with them
This is a wonderful tale about a brave, valiant knight and a fair maiden princess who sees him through his terribly difficult task of slaying the vile dragon who is threatening her kingdom. The story is crisp and has elements of fantasy, heroism, magic and celebration. The illustrations are a bit graphic for younger children, but for school age children, I think they are fine. They are gorgeously drawn and worthy of the Caldecott Medal award. Wee've read this book a couple of times.
Shannon Cash
Saint George and the Dragon explains an epic three day battle between the Red Cross Knight and a unwholesome serpent. This particular book contains more text than a typical picture book and also comprises some darker themes like violence. Hyman masterfully brings to life the legendary blonde haired, noble Saint George with vivid and breathtaking watercolor illustrations. Colored pencil is used to sketch the images before they are livened with color. Each page of text is accompanied by a wondrous ...more
Deborah O'Carroll
This is just such a beautiful, awesome, picture book! I love Trina Schart Hyman’s illustrations… she may be my favorite artist… So much expression in the characters, and so much beauty and detail! And this story was just so cool. Actually, the look of this book very much influenced some of the feel of one of my own stories I'm writing. Which may be one of the reasons I’m so attached to this book. But it’s just… perfect. <3
Sep 21, 2010 ABC rated it it was ok
This book is wordy! As in, it is too wordy for a bedtime story. We read it in two parts. We are Shrek-loving family (and when I say Shrek, I mean the movie, not the William Steig book) and this book doesn't do it for us.

Also, this book is good for girls IF you like passive girls who watch from the sidelines while the dude slays the dragons, and then agrees to marry the dude because he is such a great dragon killer.
The story itself is a little longer than it I needs to be but the beautiful illustrations make up for that. This may be a hard read-aloud for antsy kids, but an excellent one for patient children.
Elizabeth Schuster
Apr 25, 2016 Elizabeth Schuster rated it liked it
This is a very traditional fairy tale from my childhood. Within this book it describes the journey of the Red Knight slays the scary dragon in order to save the princess. The illustrations in this book are very detailed with a border around every page, which gives a fairy tale feel to the book. Each page is consistent with a full picture on one side and a text page to accompany it on the spread. The borders change on every page but consist of flower, branches and nature related items. The colors ...more
Kristine Hansen
Sep 01, 2015 Kristine Hansen rated it it was amazing
I have always loved stories of chivalry and knights and dragons. Here we have all of that, well told, and beautifully illustrated. I do like that Una has the choice of marrying the hero if she loves him, for in too many fairy tales the princess is just handed off like so much baggage. Overall this is a beautiful retelling and one well worth picking up.
Jun 17, 2015 Katherine rated it liked it
Shelves: kid-stuff
Saint George and the Dragon, a picture book by Margaret Hodges, tells of the legend of Saint George and his battle with a fierce dragon that had terrorized many towns in England. Hodges’ adaptation is based upon Edmund Spenser’s Faerie Queene. As the story opens, a man known as the Red Cross Knight has pledged six years of service to the Fairy Queen. She orders him to aid Una, a young princess who is searching for a hero who will save her kingdom from a horrible dragon. As they journey to Una’s ...more
May 10, 2016 Daniel rated it it was amazing
Well this one was out of left field! I found it by having a friend send me a digital copy just as a "what the heck" moment. I read it over a few days. I don't much like reading books that I can't physically hold. Oh I have a Kindle and all that mess, but nothing compares to the feel and smell of a printed book. Yeah, I know..... weirdo.
Well this weirdo loved this book. Now don't laugh but this is a picture book and the illustrations are done old school, hand drawn plate style. The book looks lik
Karla Fuerte
The book is about Saint George who is a noble knight. He is going with Una to slay the dragon who is laying waste to her land. George learns that he was not born of fairy folk but of English earth and the fairies had stolen him while he slept in his cradle. Many times George is injured but always fall by some magical area and is then healed and fights once again until he slays the dragon. After which the king offers him the thrown and to marry Una. He does marry Una and becomes king, but he also ...more
This a retelling based on Spencer's Faerie Queen. The text is longer so geared for the elementary aged crowd. The illustrations are detailed, colorful and beautifully convey depth and visual interest to the story. Very worthy of the Caldecott Medal it received.
Mar 22, 2016 Shannon rated it it was amazing
Shelves: catholic, classics
Amazon Book Description:
This children's book is a retelling of the story from "The Faerie Queen" by Edmund Spencer (c. 1552-1599) about the Red Cross knight George (who really lived and who died about 303 A. D.). The Red Cross Knight (the basis of the red cross in the Union Jack) accompanies the Princess Una and succeeds in slaying a dragon that had been besieging the castle of Una's father. Teachers may consider recalling for their classes that Spenser's tale is allegorical in nature in which
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Dragons, dragons ...: George and the Dragon 14 17 Sep 15, 2012 12:37AM  
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Margaret "Peggy" Hodges was an American writer of books for children.

She was born Sarah Margaret Moore in Indianapolis, Indiana to Arthur Carlisle and Annie Marie Moore. She enrolled at Tudor Hall, a college preparatory school for girls. A 1932 graduate of Vassar College, she arrived in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with her husband Fletcher Hodges Jr. when in 1937 he became curator at the Stephen Fost
More about Margaret Hodges...

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“The Fairy Queen has sent you to do brave deeds in this world. That High City that you see is in another world. Before you climb the path to it and hang your shield on its wall, go down into the valley and fight the dragon that you were sent to fight.” 2 likes
“Heart cannot think what outrage and what cries, with black smoke and flashing fire, the beast threw forth, turning the whole world to darkness.” 1 likes
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