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Knights vs. Dinosaurs

(Knights vs. #1)

3.77  ·  Rating details ·  529 ratings  ·  131 reviews
Renowned for their courage, their chivalry, and their ability to fight mythical creatures, the Knights of the Round Table must face their most dangerous opponents yet—DINOSAURS!

This heavily illustrated middle grade novel from award-winning author and artist Matt Phelan is a hilarious, rip-roaring tale of derring-do perfect for reluctant readers and fans of How to Train You
Hardcover, 160 pages
Published October 23rd 2018 by Greenwillow
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Average rating 3.77  · 
Rating details
 ·  529 ratings  ·  131 reviews

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Kris Springer
Dec 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Clever and perfect for grades 2-6. Adventure and camaraderie galore, with terrible lizards and much humor. Read this with my son.
Christina (Confessions of a Book Addict)
This story included a mash-up of my son's favorite things: Knights and Dinosaurs. It was so imaginative and fun - the perfect summer read aloud.
Mar 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
Let's be honest - how could a book where the Knights of the Round Table fight dinosaurs not be awesome?
Nov 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was 100% the perfect book for me to share with my 10-year-old. Four knights from King Arthur's court (one of them the mysteriously silent Black Knight and the other three massively boastful but useless) get sent back to dinosaur times by Merlin to teach them all a lesson - and the results are genuinely hilarious. The book is full of fantastic dinosaur/knight action sequences that had both of us laughing like mad, along with surprising sweetness in the development of a real created family. T ...more
Melanie Dulaney
What a great book for the 3rd through 6th grade crowd, especially for those wanting (or requiring) a shorter chapter book. Knights vs. Dinosaurs offers plenty of excellent black and drawings to augment the exciting tale of 4 knights and a squire off to slay dragons, ah, terrible lizards, making it a promising pick for the reluctant to read students. Terrific tale for those who enjoy action-adventure, a bit of magic, and plenty of clashing weaponry but without a bunch of blood and gore. Readers o ...more
Amanda Harrison
Nov 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Imagine combining Knights of the Round Table, dinosaurs, and Magic Tree House and you will end up with this eminently readable action novel by Matt Phelan.

Writing notes: While the format and subject matter are going to likely appeal to reluctant readers, the 'knightly' writing style (while enjoyable and not over done) is going to be a bit more challenging than the format suggests.

However, your students who are heavy superhero comic readers may not be as put off as you might suggest and will lik
Aug 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Magic Tree House is merely the most popular and well-known time travel adventure series for young readers. It's a very common type. They all feature children journeying to various times and places. A good number even take their protagonists to encounters with King Arthur and his knights. None, until now, have done the opposite, and made the Knights of the Round Table the stars of the story and sent them on a most unexpected quest. There are no dragons in this tale, just a secret cave, a misc ...more
Arthur and his Knights

During the Knights currents age, they boasted and made up fights with dragons.. ten Merlin sends them on a quest to find a terrible lizard.. and also makes up a story about the lizard King. Merlin as awesome, he taught the knights how to work together. During the journey they find out that the Black Knight is something different and when they fight the lizards the black knight gets recognition and acceptance along with Mel the squire. Good story for middle grade and for juv
Nicole Hadenfeldt
An utter delight!
Brandi Rae Fong
I think this just reaffirmed that Matt Phelan's books are just not quite my cup of tea. I love the concept, but it just kind of fell flat for me. I do know kids that will like it though; it kind of has a Magic Tree House feel, but with higher vocabulary.
Nov 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I just finished reading this swashbuckling adventure of knights of the round table battling instead of dragons, surprise dinosaurs! After the knights gather to report to King Arthur their brave feats, especially the 40 dragons Sir Erec reported vanquishing, Merlin dangles a quest. The quest is to slay the Terrible Lizard. Instantly regretting his bragging, Sir Erec has no choice but to accept. Of course all of the other knights compete for this challenge too, and thus begins the expedition to fi ...more
Oct 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens-books
King Arthur’s Knights of the Round Table love to tell tall tales of their adventures, but they are all lies. There just aren’t enough mythical beasts for them to battle. When Sir Erec brags that he’d slain forty dragons, he knew that he’d pushed the storytelling too far. It caught Merlin’s attention and Merlin suggested that Sir Erec, Sir Bors, Sir Hector and the Black Knight explore one particular cave. As they did so, along with Bors’ brave squire, they are transported back in time to when din ...more
Jul 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Absurd fun for the 2nd-5th set and kids looking for short chapter books. Kids will love being on the inside of the joke and knowing more than the knights!

In King Arthur's court, the bored knights mostly fight among themselves or invent battles to boast about because real battles are pretty scarce. When Erec carries the exaggeration a bit too far, Merlin challenges him to take on a "terrible lizard" and some of his fellow knights join in the quest. Merlin send the unsuspecting group back to a tim
Mar 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
As you can tell from the 4 stars I gave this book, I really enjoyed it! It was fast-paced, funny, and filled with Phelan's quiet and amazing illustrations. This books follows four knights of Sir Arthur's Round Table on a quest to defeat a terrible monster. Merlin sends these four knights, and squire Mel, to a time when dinosaurs roamed. We see many different dinosaurs, some which lived at different times, but Merlin explains at the end that this was done to add more excitement. An underlining po ...more
Becky B
Sir Erec joins in the required boasting of King Arthur's knights of the round table saying he vanquished 40 dragons. Merlin, seeming to want some fun, tells Sir Erec that there's a cave he knows of with many terrible lizards in it. Sir Erec has to take the quest. Three more knights can't resist joining the fun and one drags along his squire. Upon reaching the cave the company just finds a book, but after one of the knights opens it, they find that the entrance to the cave no longer looks out on ...more
Feb 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kids, general_fiction
Note: I’m not usually one to add the books I read with the kids on here, but I’ve decided if it’s a longer “chapter book” I’m going to give credit where it’s due. Also I don’t give spoilers.

Basics: Another spin on the Knights of the Round Table that is entertaining and modern enough to keep kids engaged. The story is kind of like comic books meets Jurassic Park meets medieval storytelling. It’s a quick read for the voracious YA reader who likes a bit of fantasy or knighthood stories. My kids are
I was expecting a bit more of a graphic novel with this, since I learned about it through one of those recommendation emails from goodreads after reviewing Phelan's Snow White . Instead it is a sort of hybrid, mostly a novel, but with many illustrations, and sometimes the illustrations take over and we have full sequential art mode (i.e., a comic). Nothing wrong with that, it was just a bit odd.

The story is rather ridiculous but generally fun. However, it is sort of generic in many ways, and
First sentence: When Sir Erec thought the whole thing over, he supposed that he shouldn't have said he'd slain forty dragons.

Premise/plot: Sir Erec is one of King Arthur's knights. When he exaggerates a little too much, Merlin sends him on a once-in-a-lifetime adventure to face off with The Terrible Lizard. Three of his fellow knights (Sir Bors, Sir Hector, the Black Knight) and one of the squires (Mel) accompany him to the cave Merlin described. Once there they find a book....and venture outsid
Jillian Anderson
Jan 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Basic plot: Several of the knights of the Round Table are sent to the past.

This book was actually really funny, dealing with a very silly concept. It turns out that Arthur's knights might have had a bit of a problem with bragging about killing dragons they hadn't even actually seen. They end up going to the past through Merlin's tricks.

There were plenty of little illustrations on the pages to keep things lively for more reluctant readers. There were also some surprises for less traditional knigh
Elaine Fultz
Jan 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: soyamrg
After some exaggerated boasts, Merlin the wizard sends bragging knights & their squires into a cave in order to fight “the terrible lizard.” The knights soon find themselves in a world of dinosaurs, both small and chicken-like and enormous and monstrous. The knights’ true selves are exposed under these new and unknown circumstances. One is female, as is one of the squires. Sir Bors is really quite strong (he fist fights a T Rex), but also cares for his squire. The knights fight the dinosaurs her ...more
Dec 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Book Trailer:

I would say that’s all you need to know, but I guess I should give you a little more to go on before I leave you to devour this one.

You’ve probably heard of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. Notoriously good and chivalrous, always going off on epic quests. What’s NOT widely known is that the knights were terrible exaggerators, and always made their deeds seem too amazing to be true. So when Sir Erec tells everyone that he slayed
Jan 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is one of those books that has vivid, action-packed, phenomenally well-designed cover art... and then totally lives up to it! It is just as whimsical and silly as one might expect a book with this title to be, and the artwork throughout supports the vibe of the book pretty flawlessly. Our school library got a copy with a grant last year, and I immediately wanted to read it, but I had to bide my time until the students stopped checking it out every single week, so I could briefly secret it a ...more
Molly Cluff
Mar 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is essentially Jurassic Park meets Camelot. Merlin sends the knights to a magical landscape where they can confront dinosaurs after they bragged (lied) about slaying a whole bunch of dragons. Lots of toned-down, non-gory violence which is pretty typical for a book about fighting dinosaurs (lots of getting chomped by dinosaurs that conveniently doesn't break through their armor. One knight gouges a T-Rex's eyes. Lots of dinosaur clobbering with maces and slashes with swords) but the age demo ...more
Paul  Hankins
When the bravado of one knight gets the better of him at the Round Table, a new story of daring and danger unfolds.

No spoilers here, but friends in the business will really want to think through who this book is for by way of recommending and for independent reading.

Journey back to Camelot in this humorous story of a group of knights challenged by Merlin to seek out the most terrible lizard of them all.

The mix of text, illustrations, and graphic novel/panel inserts make for a fluid reading of
Dec 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Knights vs. Dinosaurs may be just the book to rekindle interest in either of these topics for middle elementary or readers transitioning to chapter books. The first chapter could be a little slow if they don’t know much about Camelot.
After Merlin challenges four bragging knights, they find themselves mysteriously transported to a strange place. Along with their confusion at this, battles with creatures they’ve never seen before, and the surprise of finding out one of the knights is a girl, th
Jul 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kid-lit, 2019
Do you have a reader who likes knights? How about dinosaurs? Knights of the Round Table? In this tale that teaches a very strong lesson, 4 knights find themselves facing off with dinosaurs. Interspersed are illustrations in Matt Phelan's classic style (reminiscent of his book Snow White) which bring the actions even further to life. I only had one disappointment in the story but that's a spoiler.

Give this to elementary readers, including advanced 1st and 2nd grade readers or parents reading chap
Nov 14, 2018 rated it it was ok
I picked up this book thinking it would be an excellent read aloud for my 6-year old and after the first chapter, he lost interest and didn't want to come back to it. This is a book that should appeal in every way to children...knights, dinosaurs, battles, etc. but instead everything falls flat and seems awkward. I finished the book but quite frankly, I found it difficult to get through and was bored. Disappointment!
This splendidly illustrated, high-octane blend of dinosaurs, knights, and adventure was a huge hit with my 4 & 6 year olds. It's the first chapter book they've ever been willing to sit through--largely because the illustrations kept their attention on the page. (The dinosaurs and swords didn't hurt, either.)

The twist with the Black Knight was both obvious and awesome, and the slow development of teamwork was a good lesson for young readers.

Six big thumbs up!
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Matt Phelan made his illustrating debut with Betty G. Birney’s The Seven Wonders of Sassafras Springs (Atheneum/Simon & Schuster). Since then he has illustrated many picture books and novels for young readers, including Where I Live by Eileen Spinelli (Dial), Very Hairy Bear by Alice Schertle (Harcourt), and The Higher Power of Lucky by Susan Patron (Simon & Schuster) winner of the 2007 Newbery Me ...more

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