January 9, 2013
I wasn't sure for the first little bit of Rachel Hartman's Seraphina about how much I would enjoy this book, as it seemed initially straightforward in many ways: dragons and humans once warred, but they're at peace, though it's more a mutual tolerance than an outright love for each other's species. Oh, and of course there are dissenters who have no love for each other at all.
And then we have Seraphina, who we know early on is half-human, half-dragon. She lies a lot to keep herself safe because clearly, both species would hate her. It's tricky, though, because she's at court as assistant music mistress.
Since her uncle, who's a dragon, has taught her a lot about dragonkind, she lets information spill one day to the princess and all of a sudden...she's become more interesting. To the princess. At that point, as a reader, I did not find myself quite convinced.
But when things finally start happening, I must say, they happen. Important memories Seraphina has been left by her mother coming unlocked. Realizing that the people in her head are real (I promise this isn't quite as crazy as it sounds.)
And then there's civil war, and possible species war, and antagonism between family.
Oh, and of course, she's fallen in love with the wrong person. This is, after all, a young adult fantasy novel, and it wouldn't be complete without an awkward love triangle that gets semi-resolved in the end of things.
All in all, I'd recommend it. But be warned: you must be patient in order to get to the good stuff.