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Dragon Slippers #1

Dragon Slippers

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Poor Creel. She can't believe her aunt wants to sacrifice her to the local dragon. It's a ploy to lure a heroic knight so that he will fight the dragon, marry Creel out of chivalrous obligation, and lift the entire family out of poverty. Creel isn't worried. After all, nobody has seen a dragon in centuries.

But when the beast actually appears, Creel not only bargains with him for her life, she also ends up with a rare bit of treasure from his hoard, not gold or jewels, but a pair of simple blue slippers-or so she thinks. It's not until later that Creel learns a shocking truth: She possesses not just any pair of shoes, but ones that could be used to save her kingdom, which is on the verge of war, or destroy it.

324 pages, Hardcover

First published April 1, 2007

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About the author

Jessica Day George

27 books5,627 followers
Jessica Day George likes chocolate, knitting, books, travel, movies, dragons, horses, dogs, and her family. These are all things to keep in mind if you ever meet her. For instance, you could bring her chocolate to make the meeting go more smoothly. You could also talk about how adorable her children are, even if you have never seen them. You could discuss dog breeds (she had a Maltese named Pippin, and grew up with a poodle mix and a Brittany Spaniel. Right now she has a Coton de Tulear named Sunny). You could talk about Norway, and how it's the Greatest Place On Earth, and Germany, The Second Greatest Place On Earth. You could ask her about yarn, and indicate a willingness to learn to knit your own socks, if you can't already do so.

And, well, you could talk about books. Jessica's books, other people's books. It's really all about the books. To paraphrase Jerry Seinfeld: Friends, family, school, they were just obstacles in the way of getting more books.

She would like it if books came with chocolate to eat while reading them.

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5 stars
13,354 (47%)
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3 stars
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 2,440 reviews
Profile Image for Jessica.
Author 27 books5,627 followers
May 17, 2011
My first published novel, and I have to say: I am pretty DARN impressed with myself! I read it aloud to my son (6 years old) because he wanted to know what was in Mommy's books. He liked it as well!
Profile Image for Ahmed  Ejaz.
549 reviews325 followers
June 13, 2017
This book is one of those books which may put you off by its beginning. Not that it's too slow. It's because it's too.....uneventful to enjoy. I remember how I suffered at least 40% of it. I was inexplicably annoyed. But I wanted to get through this book at least once to say that finally I have read a book recommended to me by Goodreads! After 50% I FINALLY began to enjoy it. And I am thankful now to Goodreads for the recommendation. ^^

Creel is an orphan. Her aunt decided to give her to the dragon because they are poor and that one day a knight may save her from dragon's clutches and marry her and they will get a a good deal of fortune. But Creel have her own plans. Creel is given to the dragon named Theoradus who doesn't want any fight with the knight. So Creel bargains with Theoradus for a valueable thing from his hoard before leaving him. The thing she gets from his hoard which is a pair of beautiful blue slippers is the most dangerous thing which sets the world on war.

=> Creel is one of the strong female protagonists I have ever read. She is determined to be a dressmaker. I liked her struggle. I must say she is written in a very descriptive manner.
Prince Luka was also cute. I liked him too.

=> Dragons were amazing. They were different. It was an unexpected fact that these dragons didn't collect gold or such things. They collected what they like. Like: Glasses, Slippers, Books, Dogs etc... Each had his own taste. Shardas collected glasses which I really loved. Theoradus collectef slippers.

=> I was annoyed by the fact that why the dragons were not telling Creel the purpose of Slippers?? Almost above half of the book Creel didn't know why her slippers were soo strange? Some might detest this fact. I am unsure that I should or not. Because when the revelation occurred I forgave this book for this. Even though I was very annoyed before. So I would suggest you to control yourself while reading.

=> The concept of slippers was a bit odd yet amazing. I think some elements were little unbelievable. Maybe because of its middle grade genre. But I didn't find any problem.

=> Princess Amalia was sooo annoying. I couldn't stand her. But she was amazingly written. The annoyance of her character was the whole purpose.

I am surprised that how this book hasn't turned into an amazing movie? I think Disney should give a bit of its attention to this book. But I would suggest that movie should alter somethings in the beginning. Otherwise it would seem boring to death. Believe me!!

Overall, an amazing start of a series. If you love dragons and dressmaker heroine, you will love this book.

🌟🌟4.5 Stars🌟🌟

June 13, 2017
Profile Image for Cassie.
47 reviews24 followers
May 1, 2008
This was one of those books that completely surprised me. I thought I had an idea of what the book was going to be about because the initial premise is “Girl’s family is poor, aunt decides giving her to a dragon to be rescued will improve their life immensely,” and that premise reminds me a great deal of Dealing with Dragons by Patricia Wrede. So I was expecting a humorous fantasy tale filled with wacky adventures. Instead, I got a somewhat humorous political story with a strong female heroine whose strength isn’t in fighting, but is a good planner and willing to do what she must to save her friends.

I hesitated to read this book for some time, because the premise reminded me of Wrede’s books, which I love, and I was afraid that the book would be one of those situations where I’m reading it, wondering why I’m not reading the other book. Part of this is the cover. The cover is rather cartoony and doesn’t really fit with the book. It elicits a lot more feelings of adventure than the book actually contains. Really, this is a political intrigue book, where the main character just happens to fall into events because she makes friends with a prince and a few dragons.

One element I really loved was how strong a character Creel was without having to fit into a “girl becomes a warrior” model. It’s always nice to see well-written fantasy girls who can be strong and still have a traditionally feminine job. Creel meets her challenges with inner courage and dignity, from befriending dragons to taking on a nasty co-worker. She doesn’t want to be involved with the fate of her country, but she’ll do what she has to to protect her friends.

Another great element of the book is the use of dragons as characters. The author fleshed out human/dragon relations nicely as well as gave some reality to the dragon myths. This world is the type where it was always your neighbor’s grandpa’s uncle who saw the dragon, not actually someone you know. I love how the dragons collected different things, like how one collected stained glass windows and another collected dogs. These little touches bring the dragons to life outside of standard dragon mythology.

Happily the author has said she’s written a sequel to this book. While the end of Dragon Slippers is satisfactory, there is definitely room for a sequel.

read the rest of my review
Profile Image for Cara.
279 reviews704 followers
August 27, 2016
This book reminded me of when I had my fantasy phase. All I would read was fantasy (I know better now) but I would have gobble this up then just like I did now.

Creel is a poor girl from Carlieff, she has lost her mother and father and is now living with her aunt. Her aunt has the "genius" idea to send Creel to purposely get taken by a dragon, so that a charming prince will rescue and of course marry her. Through that marriage the whole family would benefit and no longer be scraping by to make ends meet. Well, everything does not go as planned...

As indicated by the title there is an important pair of slippers that play a huge role in this book. I caught early on what was so special about them, but Creel herself doesn't for a good chunk of the book. I liked how her skills with embroidery come into play, and I could visualize the pieces she made. There is so much in this story that is covered, which surprised me because of it's length. The take on dragons is unique and the best one I have seen. In the story the dragons are personable (if that makes sense) and are characters in their own right. Creel herself will come to have a strong bond with the golden dragon Shardas.

Pace, character development, world building, little twists, and plot were right on. I could nitpick that it has the feel of other books but I won't. I just fell in love with Jessica Day George's way of telling a story. It flows right and looks like it was done with ease, though still having the tension you need in a story. I imagine it would be an excellent book to read out loud.

Will be definitely reading the sequel Dragon Flight.
Profile Image for Jessica.
Author 27 books5,627 followers
May 28, 2008
This is the British edition of Dragon Slippers. I love it, it's a fun cover, and they've changed the spellings: color to colour, etc. Also, they made me take out the word 'bloody', which is in the American version!
Profile Image for Amy.
2,578 reviews400 followers
April 17, 2017
*reads original review*
*groans inwardly*
15 year old Amy strikes again...
This was a wonderful re-read. I'm surprised I haven't re-read it before. Creative, well-paced, and fun...definitely a treasure. I definitely disagree with my original assessment of religion in this book. I think it adds a nice flavor. Of course, I also appreciate myth a lot more now than I did at that age...

This was a highly amusing, very well written book. Easily for younger grades, it also appeals to older ones. I truly enjoyed it, and found the most distracting fault in the main character's praying to the three gods/godess of her "religion". Pretty much, that is why this book doesn't get five stars.
I truly apreciated discovering that George shares my love of writers like Robin McKinley, Patricia C. Wrede, and L.M. Montgomery.
Profile Image for Heather.
266 reviews9 followers
March 9, 2008
Bravo! I have to confess, as much as I try to keep my tastes liberal (I read classics, memoirs, fiction and non-fiction), this is really my favorite kind of book. I'm proud to be your goodreads friend, Jessica--this book was pure fun! I especially liked the subtle reference to Goose Girl, another of my favorite reads.

This book is the rags-to-riches, up-by-her-bootstraps story of a plucky, talented girl who happens to run into dragons a lot. I loved the characters and the humor. I was glad to see the open ending and can't wait to get on to the sequel.
Profile Image for TheBookSmugglers.
669 reviews1,984 followers
December 8, 2012
Originally reviewed on The Book Smugglers

Following the death of her parents, Creel and her brother are grudgingly taken in by her aunt and uncle. While her brother can pull his weight and helps out on the impoverished farm, Creel, unfortunately, has slightly less to offer. She has no dowry, no special beauty or magical ability, and therefore has limited prospects for marriage. To her aunt, Creel is another mouth to feed, until said aunt comes up with the brilliantly ridiculous idea to get rid of Creel and improve the family's fortune. Creel's aunt plans on dragging her niece to a rumored dragon's lair and offer Creel up as a virginal sacrifice. If the tales from the past are true, then the dragon will take Creel prisoner, making her a bonafide damsel in distress. This, Creel's aunt reasons, should appeal to a young lordling's sense of adventure and bravery, and once the local lord hears about the fair maiden in the clutches of the foul dragon, surely he will rush to the rescue! By the time said lord finds out that Creel cannot turn straw into gold, that she hasn't a penny to her name, and isn't actually breathtakingly beautiful, it will be too late - he will be honor-bound to marry Creel (and provide a stable income for her family, of course).

It's the perfect plan... except that Creel wants absolutely no part in it. When Creel is taken in by a reluctant dragon, she manages to talk her way out of being held prisoner for the unlucky young lord and leaves the dragon's lair with a pair of beautiful blue slippers on her feet - a gift from the Dragon's unexpected hoard (he collects shoes, not gold). Instead of heading home, Creel decides to leave her small village behind and make her way to the kingdom's capitol where she plans on getting work as a dressmaker, for she has great skill with embroidery thanks to her late mother's instruction. In the King's City, Creel finds work, makes unlikely friends (including a dragon and a prince), as well as a very powerful enemy. Here, Creel finds herself in the middle of a kingdom teetering on the edge of war, and only she - and her very important dragon slippers - can help stop the bloodshed before it is too late.

When I started reading Dragon Slippers, I was immediately reminded of on of my longstanding favorite series - Patricia C. Wrede's wonderful Enchanted Forest books. You know, the ones with Princess Cimorene, who runs away to become the King of the Dragons' princess and housekeeper (the King of the Dragons being a female named Kazul). Dragon Slippers by Jessica Day George is similar - the same frustrated, headstrong, clever type of heroine and dealing with remarkable, quirky dragons - but also decidedly unique, as this particular story involves a kingdom at war, spies and traitors, and a magical pair of shoes. I've only read one other book by Jessica Day George prior to this one (the sweet, if slightly bland, Princess of the Midnight Ball), and I am so very glad I did - Dragon Slippers is a charming, thoroughly enjoyable adventure.

While it has been a while since I've read Princess of the Midnight Ball, one thing that I did remember was Day George's beautiful economy of words and straightforward storytelling - the same applies here in Dragon Slippers. While the plot isn't the most groundbreaking and plays with familiar fairy tale tropes - the kindly dragons (who are intimidating and capable of mass carnage but are generally kindly), the conveniently super talented heroine who is also headstrong in the extreme but supremely lovable because of this, the loquacious sidekick, the charming undercover prince, and so on, and so forth - the story is undeniably even-handed and well told.

The heroine of Dragon Slippers, Creel, is smart and accessible - even while her skill with embroidery is awe-inspiringly unparalleled. Despite her amazing talent (and it is properly amazing, as she is the best embroiderer in the history of embroiderers, apparently), Creel immensely likable. She has a big heart, she's understanding and kind, and most importantly, she's tenacious and stands up for the people and causes in which she believes. But while Creel is all and good, the different dragons (in particular the glass-collecting, golden-scaled Shardas and Feniul - an eccentric, dog-collecting dragon) steal the show. The tensions between dragons and humans, the misunderstandings between the two species, the anger and subsequent trust that Creel tries to forge between them is fantastically done. The supporting cast are, for the most part, well detailed as well - Creel's love interest is predictable but charming, her friends saucy and fun. Even the main villain, while ridiculous and spoiled, has some depth that goes beyond initial impression.

The only criticism I have for Dragon Slippers regards on particular character - the traitor. Spoilers follow: Needless to say, this particular twist bad taste in my mouth, and detracted from my overall enjoyment of the book (significantly).

And yet...all things said, I truly enjoyed Dragon Slippers, albeit with only one very significant reservation. Recommended, and I'll certainly be around to finish the trilogy.
Profile Image for Sisters Three.
91 reviews84 followers
May 18, 2022
Dnfed this at 40%....too many mentions of gods for my liking it. It made me uneasy, so I stopped. It seemed like an interesting story, but I couldn't read it with a clear conscience.
Profile Image for Kaytlin Phillips.
Author 6 books97 followers
May 19, 2022
Dnfed...too many mentions of gods and peaying to them and hoping they would show favor and guide her. Made me uncomfortable so I stopped reading.
Had a interesting premise though.
Profile Image for Thomas.
1,457 reviews8,560 followers
January 8, 2013
Creel doesn’t particularly care for her aunt – and Creel’s aunt doesn’t particularly care for her, either, considering that she tries to sell Creel to a dragon. After Creel’s parents passed away she had no choice but to reside with her aunt. But when her extended family runs into financial problems, Creel is sent to face a dragon in hopes of getting a dashing – and wealthy – knight to save her. Things take a more interesting turn when Creel walks away with a blue pair of slippers and a dream of owning a seamstress shop. She embarks on a journey that includes myriad magical things: handsome princes, annoying princesses, and dangerous dragons.

My friend got this for me as a belated Christmas gift. While its intended for younger readers, I still enjoyed Creel’s tale of heroism and adventure – it’s crazy to think about how this is acclaimed children/YA fantasy author Jessica Day George’s first book. The plot was tight-knit and well-executed, while it had great themes for young girls too. For example, instead of relying on a prince to solve all of her problems, Creel works hard at mastering her talent and refining her craft. She’s not a tomboy or an extremely wise-beyond-her-years character, but possesses qualities that children should emulate.

Perhaps I’m digging a little too deeply in my analysis of this children’s novel, but George’s characters had great depth to them as well in that they were more than their typical stereotypes. Larkin, a girl Creel meets pretty early in the story, is crippled – initially, Creel assumes that she’s sweet, well-mannered, and quiet. However, she learns that Larkin is more than just her wounded leg. George doesn’t take the easy route in letting her young readers believe that all crippled people are kind or all beautiful blonde girls are idiots. I admire her for the subtle messages she weaves into her stories, whether they are intentional or not.

I once again must thank my best friend for buying Dragon Slippers for me. Highly recommended for younger readers and for anyone searching for a well-written fantasy story about dragons.

*review cross-posted on my blog, the quiet voice.
Profile Image for Mary Herceg.
141 reviews
December 1, 2021
When Creel’s scheming aunt gives her to the local dragon--in hopes that a wealthy young nobleman will come along to rescue and marry her--this independent, resourceful, and clever maiden is having none of it. Creel is no damsel in distress. She promptly makes peace with the dragon, rescues herself, and sets off for the city to earn her own living as a skilled seamstress and embroideress.

But a dragon’s gift has irrevocably entangled the unwitting young woman in a web of intrigue and danger, with an evil power that could cause destruction for dragons and humans alike.


I loved Dragon Slippers when I read it as a young teen. It was one of the first mainstream fantasy books I read when I began getting my own books from the library. Dragon Slippers captivated me with its imaginative, exciting world and characters, and it became one of my favorite books. I loved many things about it, and though I didn't love others, my love for it overall cancelled those out. For some reason, I later decided I didn't like it as much as I did at first, after reading other, better books. I've thought that ever since--but I've always liked this book and author, and I still count Dragon Slippers as a great book worthy of recommendation.

I never meant to reread Dragon Slippers this year. But I got it from the library to take a book photo for my Instagram account, wrote an engaging summary--and remembered why I adored the book so much when I was a young teen. I never, ever read books on impulse--instead, I plan my reading schedule months ahead. But I couldn't ignore the pull to read this book as it sat in my room for weeks. So I caved and reread it. And I loved it again! Even though I had dislikes as well, there were so many things I adored that it didn’t affect my enjoyment too much. Especially now that I knew what to expect.


I enjoyed the refreshingly different, imaginative world of Dragon Slippers. The setting definitely has elements of a typical fantasy kingdom, but the author does it so well. Creel’s home country has a rich, Scandinavian-inspired culture, and neighboring countries are developed as well with their own unique attributes that feel realistic and believable The kingdom is complete with deities and a religion that seeps into the story as a natural part of the characters’ beliefs and life--it never feels shoved in with an infodump. There’s also a slight element of magic that also feels natural and organic. (More on both those things at the end of this review!) I very much enjoyed the vivid setting, including Creel’s rural village; the dynamic, exciting capital city; and the wide-open natural spaces and beautiful lands of her world.

And then there are the dragons. Oh, these dragons!! I adore them! These aren’t your typical fantasy dragons--instead of hoarding gold and jewels, they have more sophisticated tastes. It's delightful and incredibly unique! Spoilers ahead: Creel meets more than one dragon over the course of the book, and each dragon has a vivid, endearing, well-developed personality that leaps off the page--and the same is true of the human characters. The dragons feel like real people, only with decidedly dragon-ish quirks and attributes. I love how the author portrays their human-like qualities that are sometimes hilarious, or at other times deeply sorrowful--while also powerfully conveying their incredibly terrifying strength and fierce nature. Face to face with a dragon, I’d be terrified, and so is everyone else in the book--Creel included, even at some points after she becomes comfortable with them. I love watching Creel change her assumptions about dragons--and become drawn into their affairs as she befriends them, something which becomes crucial later on.

As I just touched on, the characters of Dragon Slippers are fabulous. I loved Creel and each one of her friends--all of whom are well-rounded, complex, lifelike, and enjoyable to be around. And I detest each of her enemies, who are equally well-written. The characters are so vividly, observantly, and honestly written that they feel like real people I’ve met--because they have attributes of people in the real world, from the spoiled brat of a girl to the laughing young man. The supporting characters are just as vivid as the main characters.

And the relationships between the characters were wonderful as well! I think my favorite has to be the sweet, faithful friendship between Creel and Shardas. Every young woman should have a wise, fatherly dragon to take care of her, support her, and advise her. I definitely want one, after reading Dragon Slippers again! While reading the chapters about their friendship, I was overcome by warm, lovely, happy, secure feelings as I watched their almost familial friendship unfold. And then there’s a certain young prince--I love Creel’s friendship with him! I have to admit he’s quite dashing in a sweet, down-to-earth way (as are several of this author’s other heroes), but what I love best about him is his good nature and frequent laughter. I can’t blame Creel for being sweet on him--or him for feeling the same way in return, though she’s too humble to know it. I think he appreciates how she treats him as a person and not a prince, unafraid to talk or joke with him, or to speak her mind. Finally, the relationships between the female characters are fabulous. The female friendships are realistic and wholesome, and I loved watching Creel become fast friends with the other girls she works with, each of whom was unique and adorable--I especially loved the vivacious Marta. I also enjoyed Creel’s loving memories of her sweet mother, and how she wants to make her mother proud and fulfill her mother’s life ambition. And then there are the antagonistic females . . . The enmity between Creel and two insufferable girls felt just as real and relatable as the friendships. Creel isn’t the type to be catty or turn on other girls, but when another girl hates her, you can bet she fights back--sometimes physically, when it’s necessary.

The protagonist, Creel, was definitely one of my favorite aspects of the book. I loved her. She’s relatable and down-to-earth; both clumsy and graceful; talented and hard-working; funny and sweet. She’s incredibly brave in the face of danger, but it surprises even her. Creel is truly strong yet truly feminine, something that’s refreshing and enjoyable for me. She’s fierce, adventurous, and independent, but she doesn’t have an attitude, and she enjoys her typically feminine career in dressmaking and embroidery--and she’s good at it, too. I love how she doesn’t apologize for her typically feminine traits, while still being able to hold her own in every situation.


Of course I didn't love everything. I love the first half of the book the best. Rereading it now, I recalled how jarred I was by the unexpected twists and turns of the book--in a bad way. Several times, it took off in a wildly different direction, and it was hard to follow. It gave me figurative whiplash and confused me a lot. But that wasn't the case when rereading it, because I knew approximately what would happen--so I enjoyed it much more.

The intense events and dragon battle in the second half of the book still aren't my favorite, but at least I wasn't jarred by them this time--I was able to follow the action and enjoy it pretty well, since I knew what would happen. I definitely prefer the sweet, fun parts with Creel, her new friends, and her embroidery.

But even though I disliked a couple of things, there's so much to love!! I enjoyed the rest of the book so very much. A solid 4 stars overall.

I recommend Dragon Slippers to fans of kingdom fantasy, fairy tales, strong female characters, and (of course) dragons. It will greatly appeal to fans of Ella Enchanted or Shannon Hale. Guys and girls alike will enjoy this tale equally (there's very cool embroidery and very cool dragons, plus a few swords), and so will many different ages--from preteens to teens to adults (the main characters are mostly in their late teens, with great adult supporting characters as well).

I also recommend some of the author's other books (though I haven't read her more recent ones). Tuesdays at the Castle will always be my favorite, and with each series by this author, I like the first book much more than the others (Dragon Slippers included).

Content Summary:

It's age appropriate for preteens and up, but a sensitive preteen or teenager might want to wait. It's perfect for a young adult/teen audience and for upper juvenile fiction readers who don't mind some violence.

-- Quite a bit of violence, mostly
-- Clean romance and relatively frequent verbal flirting,
-- The young female protagonist gets into a dicey situation early in the book--a group of less-than-honorable young men intend to harm her when she's far away from help. It's subtly written and would go over the head of a younger reader, who wouldn't realize what she's actually afraid of.
-- This book definitely contains some magic, including a spell performed by the characters. They always use the term “alchemy” for the magic, but they call it a spell when they practice it, and it's the same as magic, even if they don't call it that. (The spell involves herbs and other substances in a set formula.) The late, dear friend of a major character was an alchemist, and the other characters use his laboratory and books to replicate one of his spells.
-- Many references to gods as an organic part of the worldbuilding and the characters' beliefs. There are three deities (called the Triunity), with different attributes, and the book explains it at one point in detail. The gods are part of the setting and the characters mindset and beliefs, but they don't affect the plot. There is brief mention of chapel services and buildings of worship, a natural part of life in the kindgom's culture. The main characters swear by the gods and invoke them regularly. The female protagonist sincerely prays to the different gods to help her in bad situations, and she also bargains with them (making empty promises, I noticed).
-- As for language, I noticed at least one instance of b***dy. See previous paragraph for language involving this world's gods. The characters often invoke the gods and swear by them, though not often enough to annoy me.
Profile Image for Matt.
214 reviews631 followers
December 16, 2016
I've been searching for books that I can share with my daughters, so I checked this out based on recommendations for best books for young readers. Turns out, it's already one of her favorite books, and she was mystified when it showed up in the library reserves because she knew she hadn't reserved it.

I shouldn't be too surprised. I think she's already read more books than I have. And, I can see why she likes the story. It's got a spunky no-nonsense heroine and a lot of sweet little touches, plus some nice world building. For me though, as an adult reader, parts of it just didn't cut it.

It starts out well enough. For the first few chapters there is rising action as we are introduced to the world of the dragons. But then we leave that world and enter a long flat period where nothing much happens and the story starts to drag, and the heroine - much to the loss of her in story country and to the story itself - becomes more and more detached from that high drama. For me, that cost the story a star.

But what took the story from being one I moderately enjoyed to being one I moderately disliked, was the last quarter of the book when the story that was on hiatus rather suddenly becomes prominent again. And the problem here was that the author wanted to have it both ways. She wanted it both to be a children's story where children talked in childish ways and offered childish solutions, and at the same time she wanted it to be a gritty and intense story of war, death, murder, treachery and destruction. These two things just can't go together.

One thing that strikes a reader reading the older versions of fairy tales is just how terrible the justice is that is dispensed upon the villains. Murderers, thieves, liars, abusers, betrayers and deceivers end up horrifically punished. The wicked step-mother and step-sister who tried to usurp the daughter's inheritance and her future, and who beat her and abused her verbally so that we no longer even remember her real name even in the story, and who wanted to condemn her to a life of unrewarding servitude in her own home, end up at the end of the story having their eyes plucked out by the birds. It's not unusual in such stories to have a murderer or a plotter of murder to find themselves the victim of their own schemes, and forced to eat live coals or placed naked in a barrel of nails and rolled through the streets until dead.

Though they were collected and recorded by the Brother's Grimm, the original fairy tales were written mostly by women who had experienced the reality of being orphans at age 10, placed in the custody of people who didn't love them and who often would verbally, physically or sexually abuse them. They knew the reality of hard labor, and of facing the prospect of forced marriages to a person who would gain legal custody of them as property. So when they told stories about protectors whom they could trust, they didn't molly coddle their intended audience with stories about weak protectors who were more concerned about the rights of abusers than the abused. They told stories of rights restored and justice definitively done. Even Disney, until quite recently at least, got that part of the story right. The story isn't over until the villain is definitively vanquished (and not for example sent home to mother and father with a slap on the wrist after trying for a double premeditated murder by slow horrific and psychological torture).

You can have talk of childish solutions when the problems are the problems facing a child and it be accepted within the frame work of the story, but when we are talking about stopping a genocide and saving the lives of everyone you know, trying to put those half-hearted measures into the mouths of your heroes seems not only vapid, but cowardly. This story isn't a story about minor injustices and the arguments of children, any more than the old fairy tales are stories of minor injustices and arguments by children safely ensconced in a protective environment. That the author is skilled enough of a writer to make the reality of war and death being described seem real on the page, and the sheer desperation of the situation palpable only makes the problem worse. Everyone around the heroine is meeting this desperate life and death struggle as a desperate life and death struggle, and the heroine is still talking in terms of avenging themselves on a school yard bully with the inevitable consequence that people and friends are suffering and dying in horrific ways. And it's clearly not a problem with the courage or the conviction of the character, but rather with the niceties that the author is pretending to in order to make this a 'children's book'.

The author wants to promote the heroine from being the victim in need of rescue, to the role of fairy tale protector. But when you make that promotion, the character acquires with it the responsibilities of the protector, to mete justice, and to truly protect those around her. But the character we end up with, occupies an awkward role halfway between helpless victim and valiant, wise, and just defender and thereby ends up being a lot less likeable and admirable in either role than one would like.

Or to put this more succinctly, children's book be damned, Creel should have without hesitation slit that bitch's throat before anyone else got killed.
Profile Image for Srividya Vijapure.
216 reviews302 followers
April 5, 2018
This was an impulse read and while I did enjoy it, I won't say that I loved it. Don't get me wrong, it is a cute story, it just wasn't for me. I guess I have grown too old and too jaded to be awed by a simple tale. ;)

Creel's adventures, right from the time she is sacrificed to a dragon, by her aunt in the hope that a local prince will rescue and then marry her, to the end of the book is definitely full of fun, a little bit of poignancy, a lot of dedication and will, and definitely one to be admired. Inasmuch as she never gives up, no matter what she faces, is something all of us should learn.

The book is meant for the middle graders and while I would love to consider myself that young (at least in the mind..lol), this book proved that I am not (sighs). I found some parts of the story excessively silly while other parts overly exaggerated, which made it really annoying. While Creel's character had some kind of rounding to her, the 'so-called' evil princess was one dimensional in her portrayal. That she brought about a lot of havoc in the end was just not believable as it could have been. Maybe as a child, I would have lapped it up.. hence the it's me all the way thread in this review!

My second peeve, perhaps the most important of them all, was that for a book that was about dragons, you don't see them as much as you should otherwise. Oh they are there and there is action but it is too little and described as a side plot rather than the main. And their whole presence in the book is rushed, which makes one think that this book would have been better titled as 'Creel's adventures' than what it is. I guess it is my spoilt nature acting out. I wanted dragons and I got very little, so I am upset.

Whatever be my reaction to it, it doesn't take away the fact that this is indeed a cute book, definitely meant for the young but can be enjoyed by those who like such simple tales told akin to how fairy and folk tales have been narrated the world over. Just don't expect a lot (a mistake I made) and don't think too hard as to why the dragons were restricted to a few pages (the author does make a reason for it but I wasn't satisfied).

Overall a nice experience, just that it could have been better.
Profile Image for Lady Vigilante (Feifei).
632 reviews2,673 followers
July 26, 2013
I read this book 4 years ago and I re-read it recently so some of my views have changed.

4.5 stars!

I distinctly remember why I chose to read this book. It wasn't because of the cover (if that is Shardas on the cover, it's a bit disappointing); Ms. George's writing just sucks you in from the very first page. Though this is clearly fantasy, the story is believable and the characters are compelling.

Creel is from a poor family in little Carlieff Town, and is presented as a sacrifice as part of her aunt's scheme. Who knew the chain of events afterwards leads her to blueskin slippers, a golden dragon king, and a handsome prince? Early on I got that the slippers she had were important to the dragons, and I like how the villains and conflict was portrayed. Even though this is a young adult book (and I normally read new adult books) this book was refreshing and quite enjoyable!! The ending is not a cliffhanger but rather makes the reader yearn for more of Creel's story.

The other two books in the series Dragon Flight and Dragon Spear have been released and are as good, if not, better than Dragon Slippers. You are missing out if you don't read this series!!
Profile Image for Kaethe.
6,399 reviews463 followers
August 10, 2015
I love the Buffy film, and Legally Blonde, because they take young women with girly interests and use those to literally and metaphorically kick ass. The heroine here is a talented seamstress, in a world where dressmaking is entirely manual labor. While I enjoy a story about a girl taking up a sword to fight a dragon, a story in which a girl makes a deal with a dragon is even better. And also, it reminds me of Dealing with Dragons.


Library copy
Profile Image for Obsidian.
2,734 reviews938 followers
October 23, 2018
I loved this book so much! Jessica Day George sets up a whole world and has dragons inhabit it. Creel (best name ever) is a heroine that kids will cheer for and her friendships with the dragons and her fight to keep them safe was heart warming.

"Dragon Slippers" has Creel dealing with the death of her mother which has her and her brother living with their aunt and uncle. Like many fairy-tale relatives, Creel's aunt kind of sucks. She decides that the only way that the family will be able to live is if Creel catches the eye of a knight or lord after he saves her from a dragon. Problem is that there doesn't seem to be any dragons around. Creel's aunt decides to just make her stay in a cave (that a dragon used to live) with the hope that is enough to entice someone. Too bad though a dragon really does live in the cave and after Creel's relatives leave her there to be eaten, she is taken inside and gets to meet a dragon. They come to an arrangement and she ends up being let go with some shoes that she loves and is determined to make her way to the King's Seat in order to get a job working as a seamstress. Along the way Creel meets more dragons.

Creel was hilarious. I loved her up front saying she's not special, she can't spin straw into gold and isn't fair to look upon (subtle shade being thrown at the girl in Rumpelstiltskin and Snow White) but she does know how to sew. Her traveling to the King's Seat is fraught with danger and she is saved by another dragon (Shardas) when some bandits seem hell-bent on assaulting and stealing from her. Creel eventually gets to the King's Seat and realizes her working in a store for someone else isn't all it's cracked up to be. She meets one princes, a princess, and makes a ton of new friends. She also realizes that first impressions of people can be wrong and cause damage down the line. She doesn't know what the slippers do and it is odd at first that no dragon wants to tell Creel about them, but we know that they are special in some way. When it is eventually revealed why the slippers are so special and what they do I thought it was a wonderful reveal.

I loved the dragons in this one and how all of them collect certain things (like shoes, glass windows, dogs) and laughed at all of them throwing shade about hoarding gold (who would want to do that?)

The secondary characters such as Luka (one of the princes) and some of her fellow shop assistants shine. I thought there were some humorous bits and nothing too scandalous. I also think that there are some great villains in this one (no spoilers) that will have everyone hollering for their downfall.

The writing was really good. Nothing too complicated that would confuse children and it held my interest as an adult. I also loved how Creel realizes that the history that was told about dragons and one of the founders of the kingdom was based on a lie. I do think the flow gets a bit funky in the end, it just seemed at a certain point the book was in a holding pattern and nothing was happening.

The world building was great. We can imagine the kingdom, the warring families, and where the dragons that Creel meets are located.

The ending was so good and I was happy that I got an excerpt to read from "Dragon Slippers #2."
Profile Image for Waffle...♥.
187 reviews
August 11, 2008
I'm sorry to say this book was not as good as I expected. I was about to give it 2 stars until I reached the final few chapters that got me me sitting up in my chair with wide eyes trying to absorb the story as quickly as possible to satisfy my curiosity. I find that this novel has a great plot... but the characters personality and actions are most debatable.

Creel, the heroine main character, is very intelligent as proven many times in the story. She outwitted wise dragons that have lived for centuries, figured out evil princess Amelia's plans, and even outsmarted the King and his council!... but couldn't even figure out that her slippers were not normal?! It was right in front of her face, screaming in her ear, tickling her feet wildly with annoyance and yet she fails to realise when any other person would have noticed.

There are many other characters with personality flaws that I can argue about but far too much problems to mention in this small review. But I have to say, I should be more fair to this story... it IS a fantasy story... and I have to give credit... the plot is pretty great and interesting. But there are too many scenes with Creel just sitting around... dreaming... wondering... sewing...I really got bored. Also there were many loose strings to many things that makes my brain swarm with a million questions. What happens to Creel's younger brother and her aunt? What happened to the rest of the dragons attacking the city? How did Shardas survive? If he survived, did his mate and the evil princess survive too? How... Okay... time to stop before I drive you crazy with a million questions too.

So whatever... three stars this is :)
Profile Image for The Girl with the Sagittarius Tattoo.
2,126 reviews268 followers
May 6, 2020
A very charming and sweet story of a farmgirl who befriends a dragon and is gifted a pair of slippers, unaware they hold the power of sway over dragonkind.

Creel meets no less than three dragons on her journey to the capital, where she hopes to find work embroidering. The first dragon gifted her a pair of shoes although he was loathe to part with them. Upon entering the city, she makes friends with a prince and an innkeeper who introduce Creel to the owner of the premier dress shop. Soon after she begins working, she discovers that her new mistress and a fellow shop girl are only out for themselves: a traitor steals her shoes to give to a foreign princess who knows what powers the slippers hold.

All in all, this middle-grade level story is a notch above most fantasies for this audience. This would be a great introduction to fantasy, especially for girls who will cheer on the brave and loyal Creel as she fights to save the dragons from magical enslavement.
Profile Image for Katie (Hiding in the Pages).
2,918 reviews218 followers
September 22, 2009
I must admit that I've had this book on my to-read list for a long time. I finally decided to read it and realized that I just was NOT in the mood for a book about dragons. I planned on skimming through it to get the gist of the story and then not continuing on with the sequels. Much to my surprise, I was quickly drawn into the story and it ended up to be a very cute book! Very entertaining with just the right mix of adventure, fantasy, good and evil, romance, etc. And yes, I will read the sequels....
Profile Image for Heather Brinkerhoff Burdsal.
202 reviews6 followers
June 14, 2013
I wanted to love this book, but I could only like it.

First, Creel. I mean, Creel? Come on, son.

Now, down to the business of my book malaise. The foundation of the story doesn't sit well with me. I am hung up on the whole slipper procurement. I know the title of the book is "Dragon Slippers," but really, the way she came by them makes no sense.

Creel originally wanted something of value from the dragon's hoard, like a fancy schmancy goblet, to sell for some quick cash to get her to the King's Seat. But when she finds out that the dragon hoards shoes, that plan goes out the window. Why? The first pair of shoes she describes are ENCRUSTED WITH EMERALDS. Looking for something to pawn? Found it! Move along!

But no. For some reason, she decides to forget about the whole sell-something-to-fund-the-trip idea and instead try on practical walking shoes. Because those would be so much more helpful than emeralds. By the end of the book, I am still not over this crucial flip-flop (footwear pun not intended). Her desire was to find something valuable to sell. That requirement was met in the first pair she saw. She never would have tried on any shoes. She never would have discovered the dragon slippers. She would have taken the emerald heels and headed for the hills.

Faulty book premise aside, how could the dragons be so dumb? If a single pair of shoes could determine the fate of your species, and some nitwit girl child had them, wouldn't you want to warn her to not let them out of her sight? I guess you would be worried about revealing your secret and letting her know the power she wielded, but after you got to know her and trust her (I'm talking 'bout you, Shardas!), wouldn't you warn her not to let them fall into the wrong hands (or feet)? I know their conversation was interrupted, but really. Some things you make time for. Like doom-shoes.

And Creel supposedly suspected something important was happening, and that it might have dire consequences for her kingdom, but she refused to tell her bestie, Prince Luka, that her foreboding about the country (which is totally his business, as a prince), had something to do with dragons. That simple conversation would maybe have saved lots of lives.


But I liked the characters (Luka has a piece of my heart, and Shardas and I could totally hang out and eat peaches in a cave).

Dare I read the second book? Will it be built on such a flimsy foundation? Will Creel (::cringe::) get any smarter?

Thus far, the Dragon Slippers series does not supplant The Enchanted Forrest Chronicles in my heart. Not even close. I miss you, Princess Cimorene.

Profile Image for Valerie.
249 reviews74 followers
April 3, 2010
I've been putting this book off for a while now. My only excuse is that I got caught up in rereading older favorites and newly released books. I kind of had this great picture in my mind of how this book would be. As per usual it was different than I thought and as per usual it was in a good way.

Hating to be a burden and hoping for a new and better life Creel reluctantly agrees to go with her Aunt's crazy plan to be captured by a dragon. Her Aunt hopes to get a wealthy knight/prince to rescue her and marry her. Creel doesn't think that a dragon even exists in the cave until she finds out there is. In order to save herself and the dragon anymore trouble she strikes a bargain and ends up with a pair of very nice and very unique pair of slippers. As the title suggests they are not ordinary slippers so ultimately the slippers make more trouble for her.

Because of these slippers Creels encounter other dragons, gets on the bad side of the new princess to be, and has a chance of making her dream come true all while having to save the kingdom from certain disaster. Pretty good stuff huh? The certain disaster part came a little later than I hoped but it's still great. The slippers were the most frustrating thing of all. Why is there always something in the way of Creel finding out what the slippers do? And she knows that they aren't just ordinary slippers so why doesn't she try harder to find out what is so special about them? She doesn't find out before it’s too late.

Having Creel as a protagonist was fun. She is an all together reluctant heroine and she knows that she is in over her head but does her best to do what she can. Creel always stays true to herself through and through. But what I liked so much about this book is that its part of a series and it could really stand on its own. I want to read the next book though.
3,750 reviews19 followers
December 21, 2008
When the family farm is in peril of foreclosure, Creel's aunt decides that Creel should visit the dragon on the hill in order to be saved by a knight who will also rescue the family's fortunes. Creel rolls her eyes but finds herself throwing rocks at the cave entrance anyway, never seriously expecting to see a dragon. But a dragon is there, even if he is old and tired and collects shoes instead of gold. He gifts Creel with a pair of shoes of her choice and Creel, after choosing a beautiful pair of blue slippers, sets off to seek her fortune in the king's city as a seamstress. Creel eventually gets there but only after time with another dragon, a meeting with a handsome prince and a spiteful princess. Creel's talent as a seamstress, her wit and courage will all be tested by treachery that leads to war between her beloved dragons and the kingdom.

Creel is a delightful heroine and I thoroughly enjoyed this engaging book. Creel's talent for sewing is an integral plot element that added a fresh appeal. Creel is an appealling heroine, outspoken, smart and stubborn, who doesn't wait around to be saved and still manages to win her prince. I can't wait to read the next book in the series.
Profile Image for Amanda.
166 reviews19 followers
November 24, 2015
For the first fifty pages or so of this book, I was just annoyed. The author went out of her way to establish that Creel, the main character, was not pretty- oh, but wait! She was smart. Ugh. Why? Whywhywhywhy? Why must it always be one or the other? Can't a girl be smart AND pretty? Or better yet, why does it even matter how she looks? Especially since this detail didn't really do anything to advance the story except give the reason why the protagonist thought no dragon would ever kidnap her. I still stand by the annoyance, but I was soon too caught up in the story to give it much more heed and it ended up being such a good story! Creel WAS smart, and plucky, and compassionate, and a good advocate for herself and her friends. She was a strong character, so I can forgive the author her earlier mishaps. I also loved the dragons, who were surprising in the most wonderful way, and the cast of supporting characters, who were superbly drawn. I ended up simply falling in love with this story, and I'll certainly be checking out the next two volumes of this series.
Profile Image for Courtney Kleefeld.
Author 3 books29 followers
October 1, 2021
This was really cute, one of the best middle grade fantasy books I’ve read, almost on par with Princess Academy. Throughout the book I found myself laughing along over the funny things happening or being said.
A couple things lowered the rating for me a bit but this was still a good book.
411 reviews123 followers
October 24, 2016
Sometimes my own prejudices trip me up. In this case, I'm referring to the high ratings for this book, which made me try to read some of her other books first. I was not that impressed.

This book, however, rocks. It rocks majorly! Plus it has dragons! Lots and lots of talking dragons with different personalities. Off the top of my head, I can't think of one thing I disliked about the book. There was something cute and sweet and uplifting about the entire book, although I did hate how that one girl didn't get enough of a comeuppance, seeing as she was not only annoying beyond belief, but was also a traitor into the bargain.

But, oh, the dragons. The dragons with their different hoards, whenever everyone expected treasure. Their different personalities, their colors...they were simply the best part of the entire book. But the rest of it all was also pretty darn great.
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