Monday, April 5, 2010

Voices of Dragons by Carrie Vaughn

On one side of the border lies the modern world: the internet, homecoming dances, cell phones. On the other side dwell the ancient monsters who spark humanity's deepest fears: dragons.

Seventeen-year-old Kay Wyatt knows she's breaking the law by rock climbing near the border, but she'd rather have an adventure than follow the rules. When the dragon Artegal unexpectedly saves her life, the rules are abruptly shattered, and a secret friendship grows between them.

But suspicion and terror are the legacy of human and dragon inter­actions, and the fragile truce that has maintained peace between the species is unraveling. As tensions mount and battles begin, Kay and Artegal are caught in the middle. Can their friendship change the course of a war?

In her young-adult debut, New York Times bestselling author Carrie Vaughn presents a distinctly twenty-first-century tale of myths and machines, and an alliance that crosses a seemingly unbridgeable divide.

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I love the premise of this book. I haven't seen a lot of YA fantasy involving dragons, so this instantly caught my eye. The story of the dragons is truly fascinating-- the atomic blasts from World War II brought the dragons out from their underground hiding spots and a war between people and dragon ensued. It ended with a treaty: the dragons were given land and both sides promised never to cross the border.

The world building was fantastic, and the dragons were really well drawn. Carrie Vaughn is already a NYT bestselling author though this is her first novel for young adults. I think she did a great job at capturing the YA spirit, but it did seem that a couple scenes (like the homecoming dance) were just there to make it feel more teen. It did provide a nice contrast though, as to how simple life was before the war. Once the battles between human and dragons started, I couldn't put the book down!

The tension over the war was gripping, and the way it escalated was very well done. Vaughn definitely has a way with words and her descriptions are beautiful. I really admired the way she handled something so large as a brewing war while all keeping it centered on Kay. The ending is a bit of a cliffhanger though it still manages to wrap things up in a satisfactory way. Regardless, I can't wait for the sequel!

The book came out last month, so no waiting if you want to pick it up. If you're not yet convinced, the awesome people at Harper have the first 60+ pages on their website right here. So go check it out!


  1. I'm excited to read this! I mean, it's got dragons in it!

  2. Dragons!! Oooh, I'll have to check this out!

  3. I will definitely check this one out the next time I go to the bookstore. :)

  4. There are not enough dragons in our modern world. And too little magic.

    I was just blog-surfing and found your interesting blog. If you're of a mind, come visit mine : WRITING IN THE CROSSHAIRS :

    I write on autonomy using a bear cub and magic of all things. Have a great week.