Dragoncharm by Graham Edwards

Dragoncharm by Graham Edwards tells the story of Fortune, one of the new strain of dragons known as Naturals. Together with his Charmed friend, Cumber – a gold-winged dragon of the old charmed order – Fortune sets out on an epic quest to discover the truth about the turning of the world and the decay of charm. Along the way they encounter some of the ancient races with which they share this failing world – the faeries and the ancient trolls and the immortal, inscrutable basilisk, awakened at last from its long and dreamless sleep.

But it’s Fortune who must finally take up the challenge of the dreaded Maze of Covamere and face what lies beyond even the world of charm. To help him he will need the strength and love of his friends.

Fortune’s story continues in Dragonstorm.

  • “A must for all dragon fans” Starburst
  • “Well-rounded characters and moments of true excitement” Publishers Weekly
  • “A powerful story full of adventure and heroes” Suite101
  • Dragoncharm was nominated for Best Novel in the 1995 British Fantasy Society Awards.

What did you think of the book? Please rate or review it on Amazon or Goodreads.

Free preview sample

Dragoncharm by Graham Edwards, paperback cover art by Geoff TaylorThe story behind Dragoncharm

Dragoncharm was my first novel. It was directly inspired by William Horwood’s Duncton Wood, which in turn reminded me of a childhood favourite: Richard Adams’s Watership Down. Believe it or not, it’s not such a big jump from rabbits to dragons.

There’s a wealth of great stories featuring anthropomorphic animals – the genre stretches back to Kenneth Grahame’s The Wind in the Willows and beyond. I wondered if anybody had ever tried it with mythical creatures and couldn’t think of a single example. Once I’d got that far, I couldn’t think of a better creature to feature than the dragon.

The cast of Dragoncharm is made up almost exclusively of dragons. No people, no wizards, no damsels in distress. I was determined to put dragons centre-stage. Oddly, I never thought of it as a fantasy: I was writing about what our world was really like, back when dragons ruled the skies. Beyond that, well, I wanted to create a big, romantic adventure with big, romantic characters … who just happen to have big, romantic wings. I hope I succeeded.

As well as being published in the UK and US, Dragoncharm has also been translated into German and Hungarian.

Book trailer

The Dragoncharm movie that nearly was

Dragoncharm movie poster

Dragoncharm was optioned by UK producers Dandelion Distribution back in 1996 for development into a full-length movie and 13-part TV series.

I had several meetings with director Bob Keen at his Image Animation headquarters at Pinewood Studios. Bob produced a short promotional trailer using CGI and animatronics superimposed over live-action backgrounds, creating a look similar to that seen in the BBC’s Walking With Dinosaurs. Bob’s team came up with some interesting solutions to the problems of portraying dragons on screen. My dragons are characters, not monsters, so their faces had to be instantly recognisable and able to express a wide range of emotion. The traditional long dragon snout is hard to animate for lip-synch, hence the shorter, stubbier look they came up with.

Fortune - an animatronic dragon from the Dragoncharm movie trailer

Bob and his team produced a short promotional trailer for the Dragoncharm movie as a proof-of-concept. It was also part of the drive to raise the capital to get the movie into proper pre-production.

The Image Animation team had a really good handle on the story and characters. And they made some really beautiful animatronic heads. Some of the scenes in the trailer looked great, some ropey. But the trailer was only ever an exercise, to see what was and wasn’t feasible. Also, this was way back in 1996, before CGI had really left the nursery. Despite that, animator Rory Fellowes injected real character into his CG creations. Given the current state-of-the-art in character animation and visual effects, it would be fascinating to see what could be achieved now.

Wraith - another of the animatronic Dragoncharm models

Despite all the hard work that went into its development, sadly, the movie never came together and Dragoncharm became one of the many media projects consigned – for now at least – to production hell.

Here’s a longer article about the Dragoncharm movie adaptation.

21 thoughts on “Dragoncharm

  1. An amazing story.. I’m so glad I found it while wondering around my highschools libairy all those years ago. Thank you for creating such a fantastic world.

      1. No worries at all mate, I’m glad that I finally found I way to tell you how much I enjoyed the Dragoncharm series. I can still remember tearing up a few times in the second and third book. I think I’ll go back and reread them soon. 🙂

        I’m still trying to hunt down the rest of the sister series.. I’ve only been able to find stone & sky so far, but it was awesome too. ^.=.^

  2. I’ve just now finished reading it. A story never to forget.
    This book made me cringe very very often. As someone who adores and loves dragons, all my feelings and emotions were affected badly while reading your book. I was excited, happy, sad and sometimes even a little depressed until the very end.
    Hopefully I’ll manage to read the other two books of your trilogy, too. Since my mother tongue is German, it won’t be as easy as reading the translated version of Dragoncharm. But excitement will likely lead me to order the English version, I have a good feeling.
    Thank you for such an amazing story! >^..^<

    1. Thank you, Dominik. I wanted to write a book that took readers on a real emotional journey so I’m glad it had that effect on you. I hope you enjoy the other books in the series, and that reading them in English doesn’t affect your experience too much (your English is MUCH better than my German, so I’m sure you’ll do fine!). It always interested me that the German title of ‘Dragoncharm’ was ‘der Basilisk’. I assume the English word ‘charm’ – with its multiple meanings of charisma, magic and talisman – has no direct equivalent in German.
      Cheers, Graham

  3. These things make me write about dragons also. Thank you for writing this, as I want to read it so I can get more information and concepts about dragon main characters.

    1. Just curious if you will ever have this in print again as I do not want it to die out :’c

      1. Thanks Jeffrey

        All three dragon books have been out of print for a few years now, although used editions are widely available. It’s unlikely there will be a new print edition in the near future, unless a publisher becomes interested in the novels again.

        I’m exploring the possibility of reissuing the novels as ebooks. It’s not as easy as you might think: because of their age, I don’t have clean electronic copies of the texts. So the only option is to scan, convert and repackage the original paperbacks. Right now, I don’t have the time or resources for that, but in the future I hope I will.

          1. I mean in that if you have even only five people each doing a different chapter of a book, that is rather fast. Like person1 doing chapters 1-5, Person2 doing 6-10, etc

        1. Since making my earlier comment, I’ve republished “Dragoncharm” and “Dragonstorm” in new ebook and paperback editions, with “Dragonflame” following close behind.

  4. Sorry for so many post(Jeffrey Tate when I was logged out), but I have to tell you your book, now that I think this series will make me continue to write about my wyvern knight. ^^ and I am done with posting here for real now.

  5. I think out of all the books involving dragons that I’ve read Dragoncharm is the main one that got me writing about them. So many are unfinished though… Also trying to find Dragonstorm, haven’t found it yet but I’m looking forward to reading it!

  6. I have come back to say I may eventually write a review of this when I am a published author myself.

    I liked their being wyverns as well as more western style dragons both. It has encouraged me to write more of my own stuff to publish sometime.

    This was interesting to read, and I liked the start. But my own person problem with myself is I have trouble reading books with lots of dead dragons for some reason. Like It was something I read through as it was nice to, but I get a pit in my stomach with how things got near the ending.

    Thank you for writing this book, but the way I am of my own fault, I have trouble reading about masses of dead dragons.

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