Welcome to the first post of 2012! Let us begin another fantastic year of reading here at the Bibliophile Support Group! Without further ado:
Dragon’s Keep is a YA fantasy novel by Janet Lee Carey.
Rosalind is a beautiful princess, an ancestress of Evaine, of the forgotten Pendragon royal lineage, and the prophesied 21st queen, the one Merlin said would end wars and bring honor back to their banished throne on Wilde Island.
Yet only her mother, the current Queen, knows the truth of her “loveliness”. On her ring finger she has not a finger but a dragon’s talon – ugly and sharp. She wears gloves at all times and not one person outside the queen knows of her disfigurement – of her flaw.
Constant streams of healers are brought to Rosie, but no one cures her ailment – or is even allowed to know of it before they begin trying to heal her. It seems impossible that a six-hundred-year-old prophecy could be about her.
But when a lethal dragon seems to target her directly and takes her to his cave, Rosie begins to realize that her hated claw may be inextricably intertwined with her fate – and that there are many secrets she needs to unveil to meet her destiny…
I previously read The Dragons of Noor by Janet Lee Carey and was hypnotized and impressed – here I am again.
Janet weaves a graceful, melancholy prose that places us right in 1145 medieval times, a time of royalty and treacherous dragons. The flaw Rosie is afflicted with is mysterious and fascinating, as well as being heartbreaking on the personal, shame-ridden point of view. We see a girl that from birth has been told to hide a part of her that she had no control over – it is very sad.
I was entrenched in the plot and characters before fifty pages were over. Dragon’s Keep is horrifying, affecting, and twisty! There is a gravity, a depth that sinks in, an anguish and sorrow, and a compassion and intrigue to this new fairy-tale. It is most assuredly entertaining, but also solemn. This is a journey of sprawling fantasy proportions – full of kingdom conspiracy, a longing for friendship and love, and the agony of loss and betrayal. You hope for a happier, lighter future – but you don’t know if one is coming.
You know that I refuse to give out spoilers, so all I can say is that if you are a fantasy lover, you need to read Dragon’s Keep! The suspense is taut and the realistic human nature of the characters brings believability to the story that is not always available in these plot-heavy books. There is a raw, natural fear, deep feeling, and unexpected plot turns that keep Dragon’s Keep fresh from start to finish.
Dragon’s Keep gave me a lump in my throat! It is a lovely, striking, eloquent novel – and I am so very happy to know that a companion will be available this month. I’m ready to return to Wilde Island!