In middle school I remember reading and loving a (possibly trilogy?) book about a female knight who fought dragons and maybe befriended wild animals (wolves or panthers or something similar). She had an ointment which either helped heal burn scars quickly or rendered her impervious to fire, which helped with fighting the dragons. This is all I remember for now, will add more details if they come back.

  • 9
    When were you in middle school? Five years ago? Fifty years ago? This morning?
    – jwodder
    Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 17:36

1 Answer 1


Sounds like The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley

From the Wikipedia summary:

Aerin stumbles upon a book about the history of Damar and the dragons of old that used to terrorize it, of which only much smaller relatives still exist. Finding privacy in the pasture of her father's now-injured war horse, Talat, Aerin reads through the book while forging a friendship with him. At the back of the book she finds a recipe for kenet, an ointment meant to protect the wearer from the effects of fire. Unfortunately, the recipe does not specify the amounts of each ingredient needed. While her first attempts to make the ointment fail, Aerin begins to split her time between learning to ride Talat and experimenting with the fire-proof ointment. After three years of experimenting, Aerin stumbles on the correct proportion of ingredients, successfully making kenet. Then, Aerin goes off to slay a small dragon that is terrorizing a village with the help of her kenet and Talat.

Later, she is off to confront the main villain

As she travels north, Aerin is joined by armies of foltsza, large mountain cats, and yerigs, large wild dogs.

There a sequel, set much later in the same world (although written before The Hero and the Crown) called The Blue Sword, with a more Victorian colonial setting.

  • I also remember there being some issues with the ointment even in the completed form.
    – JAB
    Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 17:52
  • 2
    @JAB When she fights the full dragon, even the ointment isn't enough to prevent her from getting burned.
    – eshier
    Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 17:57
  • @eshier That's only because she opens her mouth and lets Maur's flames go down her gullet, the inside surface of which which had not been treated with the kennet ointment.
    – Buzz
    Commented Apr 15, 2018 at 19:26
  • This is the unaccepted (but in my opinion best) answer to scifi.stackexchange.com/a/11559/23243
    – FuzzyBoots
    Commented Dec 7, 2023 at 20:13

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