To Train Your Dragon
This book is about the adventures of Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III, the ten-year-old son of a Viking chief, who must capture a dragon for a rite of passage. Set on the Island of Berk, a group of 10 youths of the Hooligan tribe are being led by "Gobber the Belch" to perform their first military operation; to catch their own dragon. Those who are not able to catch and train a dragon are exiled from the tribe. This military operation has to be done by every Hooligan.
The storyline starts building up when Hiccup notices his dragon is incredibly small. Gobber advises the youths to train their dragons by using the How to Train Your Dragon book from the Hooligan Library. However, the book has only a single page saying, "yell at it; the louder the better." This does not help at all for Hiccup, who can barely yell, so he has to find another way to train his dragon. He first tries yelling, which fails. He then puts together a list of supposed characteristics of dragons that can be used in training. The list also fails and, despite the insistence by Fishlegs that it will not work, he resorts to pampering his dragon.
Since how to train your dragon is the first book out of these series: [(Hiccup the Seasick Viking (2000) Children's picture book, How to Be a Pirate (2004), How to Speak Dragonese (2005), How to Cheat a Dragon's Curse (2006), How to Twist a Dragon's Tale (2007), A Hero's Guide to Deadly Dragons (2008), How to Ride a Dragon's Storm (2008), How to Break a Dragon's Heart (2009)]. The film was created as an epic re-telling of the first book in the series. As such, there are numerous differences between the two media. These include a new plot, minor and major character changes, as well as a few adjustments to the overall setting. The greatest change is that the Vikings in the book have the custom of capturing and training dragons even before the story begins - but in the film, they are fighting a fierce war against the dragons and only switch to training them after Hiccup shows that this can be done. However, Cowell stated in her blog that she felt approvingly that the film remained "true to the spirit and message of the book." Cowell also explained that she felt that the changing of media (novel to film) triggered a necessary change in plot and characters.