First book in the Dragonkeeper trilogy

book cover

Read a sample chapter (533.3kb PDF)

Ancient China, Han Dynasty. A slave girl saves the life of an ageing dragon and escapes her brutal master. Pursued by a ruthless dragon hunter, the girl and the dragon make an epic journey across China carrying a mysterious stone that must be protected.

This is the story of a young slave girl who believes she is not worthy of a name but finds within herself the strength and courage to make this perilous journey — and do what must be done.


“A truly fabulous journey. I loved every dragon’s tooth, claw and scale of it.”
Gary Crew, Author

“The story explores themes of trust, courage, power, greed and love in a meticulously researched setting. It is a story that informs as it delights and leaves the reader with a yearning to know more.”
Judges’ Report 2004, Children’s Book Council of Australia

“This is a story of incredible beauty, with a delightful mix of fantasy and history… Wilkinson’s earlier books were good—but this one, her longest yet, is simply brilliant.”
Aussie Reviews (Click here for the full review)

“Like [her main character], Wilkinson has come into her own with this book.”
Reading Time Nov 2003

“A beautifully written story… this should enthrall. In a word: enchanting.”
Melbourne Herald Sun Weekend 25 Oct 2003

“… entrancing, beautifully written story… a wonderfully satisfying and unexpected climax.”
Adelaide Advertiser 20 Dec 2003

“… an ambitious novel, marrying ancient Chinese history and culture with magic and fantasy… the sights, smells and tastes of this fantastic ancient China are fully realised.”
Bookseller & Publisher (Children’s Supplement) Nov 2003

“I was gnawing fingernails and ignoring my own writing as I read, eager to find out if the companions would succeed in their quest… I recommend this book to any serious fantasy reader!”
Tamora Pierce, fantasy writer

“Touching, wise, fresh, funny and gripping”
Amanda Craig, The Times, Feb 2008

Reader reviews

“During the whole of the story, my eyes were glued to the book, not even stopping to eat! I recommend it to any reader of any age.”
James G

“dragonkeeper is the crappiest story i’ve read”
Frank P

“Last night I finished reading the Dragon Keeper to [my children]. It is not often that everyone in our family has enjoyed a book so much. Thank-you for some beautiful writing.”
Michael F

Map from Dragonkeeper

Han Empire at the time of the Dragonkeeper

Printable version