Zale. Gauthier. Varden. These three dynasties...they all sound like something out of an ancient, oriental myth or fairy tale. The concept of humans and dragons helping and living in harmony with one another, without fear. To me, that's exactly what they are. A distant dream only read of, whispered secretly, quietly yearned for. For, you see, I am the new Quelda of Tynan.
Along with her new husband, Chalom, Crislin must choose to embrace cruel tradition, run from it, or stand against it. The young couple's only hope is to rally the help of the three peaceful dragon dynasties of Sulaimon-but tradition is not on their side.
Together, they must convince the dragon emperors to allow them access to the shrines which house the sacred Aria - protective strands of music which may be able to disperse the evil from Tynan and unite the four dynasties of Sulaimon as a whole once again. Their only aid stems from a sprite whose moods are as unstable as her magic, a young minstrel, and a mysterious fox. Despite the odds, such plans are daring, dangerous, unprecedented, but fully possible - if they can escape the Wall first.
I was absolutely HOOKED at the beginning of this book! The author had a beautiful way of revealing the terrible situation in which the main character, Crisilin, found herself just a little at a time so that the reader is completely enveloped in Crisilin's fears and inner strength. You are right there with her, you don't totally know what is going on, but that helps you feel more in the moment. Speaking of Crisilin, I just love her. She is so sweetly innocent, and unabashedly so. She is self aware, she knows she's naive in many things, and that's how she likes it. I loved the evolution of her character from quietly brave and innocent young victim, to brave, strong and still innocent heroine. The romance at the center of the plot was so sweet. I know I've already used the word innocent so many times in this review, but I just can't help it, it is the best word to describe their relationship. Crisilin and her husband are so endearing and quietly passionate. The cast of supporting characters was great, they were diverse and entertaining. Another aspect of the book I really loved was the emphasis put on the magical properties of music. The story really went with the whole "music tames the wild beast" theme, and it really worked well with the other elements of the plot. There were a few brief moments here of there where the "music as the bringer of peace" crossed the line from beautiful and magical to cheesy, but it never lasted long. I really loved this book, and feel it is a very special story. It is a must read for fantasy lovers and also lover of sweet romances. 2, Use a Coupon at Borders
Do you agree with my review? Do you think I'm totally off base? Either way I'd love to hear from you, be sure to leave a comment and tell me how you feel!
***FTC Disclosure: This book was provided in exchange for an honest review, no other compensation was given, all opinions are my own***
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