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Short Description for Seraphina Four decades of peace have done little to ease the mistrust between humans and dragons in the kingdom of Goredd. 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 murderedNin suspiciously draconian fashion.
- Published: 07 October 2012
- Format: Hardback 465 pages
- ISBN 13: 9780375866562 ISBN 10: 0375866566
- Sales rank: 15,908
Reviews for Seraphina
A Promising Debut
Previously published on my blog: http://fictionfervor.wordpress.com/2012/07/10/review-seraphina-by-rachel-hartman/
WARNING: Linda is about to sing the praises of this debut novel. If you'd prefer not to be overwhelmed with a deluge of her gushing, please skip to the last paragraph.
I love dragons. I love medieval settings. And I love high fantasy. And those things I loved? Well, they were all in Seraphina. So, clearly, I loved it.
First, I want to explain why I didn't give it five stars. (If you're viewing this review on a website other than my blog, there's a good chance that I rated it five stars there. Because this book was a 4.85-yes, that specific-and I had to rate it up, of course.) The first few pages of Seraphina were, admittedly, slow. I had trouble finding it within myself to keep on trudging through Seraphina's daily life. A large part of this fourth of the book was spent on setting up the world that Seraphina lived in, and it was getting quite wearisome.
But when I hit somewhere along the 100-page mark, I couldn't put this book down. The first hundred pages had taken me a few days to read (I was busy, I had other writing to do, I had other books to read, blah blah blah), but the next four hundred? I read it in two sittings, only stopping in between to sleep. (My mother had chided me for staying up until two in the morning to read a book on my computer.)
I adore the characters in this book. If you've read my reviews before, you probably know by now that I hate Mary Sues. Guess what? There wasn't a single Mary Sue in this book. I rejoiced. And I fell in love with everyone in this book-the humans, the dragons, and the half-dragons. Ah, yes. The half-dragons. Because Seraphina is a half-dragon. Or, if I was thinking from the perspective of a dragon, a half-human.
Seraphina + boy whose name I will not name because I don't want to spoil anything for you = cute, adorable, worthy of squealing. Since I've developed such an eye for things like this, I knew immediately upon meeting the guy that he was the love interest. Heck, I knew it before that. Because I'm that good. But getting back on topic: Seraphina and boy together equal one of the cutest couples I've read in a while. I wish they'd hold hands.
And now I have to talk about Rachel Hartman's world. This world is INCREDIBLE. I'm not kidding. Six kingdoms with wicked cool names: Goredd, Samsam, Ninys, Porphyry, Ziziba, and Tanamoot. Two sub-species of dragons: saarantras (who can maintain a human form) and quigutl (who meddle with metal - that pun was completely unintended, by the way). Medieval setting-yes, that means palaces. Cathedrals. Handsome princes and clever princesses. And all that royal court intrigue. *rubs hands together*
After reading that, tell me that you don't want to read this book.
Oh yes, and music! I love music.
I'm sorry, this review has started to sound incoherent even to me. I'm just in too much awe. I have author-worship of Rachel Hartman now because she has created such a fascinating world (she created it when she was in seventh grade, wow).
The only coherent paragraph in this review: Hartman's debut was absolutely thrilling. It had all the qualities that I value: an intriguing mystery (as the murder of a prince would undoubtedly generate a mystery), mythological creatures (dragons, no less), a medieval tone (and with it, the court and the gossip), strong characters (so much that they could be considered stubborn), and an adorable romance (worthy of squealing over, I promise). I could only find fault with the first few pages, but Hartman has undoubtedly delivered a promising debut. I will eagerly await for her sequel, which is currently dubbed Dracomachia.
Source: Galley received from publisher for review by Linda