Four decades of peace have done little to ease the mistrust between humans and dragons in the kingdom of Goredd. Folding themselves into human shape, dragons attend court as ambassadors, and lend their rational, mathematical minds to universities as scholars and teachers. As the treaty's anniversary draws near, however, tensions are high.
Seraphina Dombegh has reason to fear both sides. An unusually gifted musician, she joins the court just as a member of the royal family is murdered—in suspiciously draconian fashion. Seraphina is drawn into the investigation, partnering with the captain of the Queen's Guard, the dangerously perceptive Prince Lucian Kiggs. While they begin to uncover hints of a sinister plot to destroy the peace, Seraphina struggles to protect her own secret, the secret behind her musical gift, one so terrible that its discovery could mean her very life.
In her exquisitely written fantasy debut, Rachel Hartman creates a rich, complex, and utterly original world. Seraphina's tortuous journey to self-acceptance is one readers will remember long after they've turned the final page.
I was pleasantly surprised by this book. Sure I heard it was good, but that's the thing, is it all hyped up or not? Well I can tell you, that it is not. It was a wonderful YA fantasy.
It's all about Seraphina, a halfbreed, something that should not exist and something that many would love to kill. So she hides the fact that she has scales on her body and goes on with her life. All in a nice kingdom that fought dragons and made peace with them 40 years ago. All in a kingdom where dragons are hated and looked down upon. Not to mention all the religious propaganda being spewed out by zealots. Yes nothing like religion to get my panties in a twist when reading fantasy. Most often when it happens it cos it's cos the religion resembles Christianity, here with saints and all that we are better, you others suck. I am so gonna go off on a religious rant now, but ok ok it works great in a world where dragons look down on humans and humans look down at dragons.
So a society with lots of tensions. Then we got a lot of nice side characters. Seraphina's uncle, whom she can't call uncle. Prince Lucian (I liked him!), princess Grisselda (I liked her too, she was just sweet), and lots more. All forming a nice cast of characters around here. Helping her on her way, not helping her on her way and leading to the end. Oh yes the end, trouble there. I do not know how it all will work out but I am sure waiting for the next one.
Both eh and yes
Hardcover, UK, 368 pages
Published July 19th 2012 by Doubleday Childrens (first published July 1st 2012)
Fantasy / YA