Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman - Review

Seraphina is a fantasy novel about a young musician who finds her place in the world.  In Seraphina’s world, dragons are very real and very dangerous or at least they used to be.  Decades before, dragons and humans were at war.  When a tough and smart queen petitioned a treaty with the leader of the dragons, peace finally occurred, opening the doors for dragons to mingle with humans.  There are still harsh feelings between dragons and humans even decades after the treaty was signed.  There are humans who hate dragons and vice versa.  There are even secret orders committed to destroying the treaty.  Most humans still fear dragons and feel very negatively about them.  

Dragons are able to pass as humans by magically making themselves a ‘human suit’ to wear.  Almost all dragons are required to wear special bells to identify themselves as such so that the humans can easily identify them.  Dragons are not allowed to show emotion in their society, so humans are very interesting to them.  There are dragons disguised as humans, called scholars, who are not required to wear bells so that they can mingle and learn from the humans more easily.  The main character, Seraphina is a half dragon which,h according to the dragons and humans both, is an abomination and illegal.  Seraphina is taught from the time she is a small child to never tell anyone of her real nature.  She has an uncle who is a dragon scholar that helps her with her dragon problems, such as the scales that sprout from her abdomen and arm when she is about 8 years old, and a father who seems very distant.  

Seraphina is an excellent fantasy story!  I really enjoyed reading it and learning about this world.  There are many twists and turns and some things I never suspected.  The characters are very interesting and well developed.  The character of Seraphina grew throughout the story and became a very strong heroine.  There’s a dash of forbidden romance, intrigue, mystery, and more in this great novel.  This one will be popular among fantasy fans.  I hope this is a series because I really want to learn more about the amazing world Ms. Hartman has created.

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