For a dragon story! For a story with the “realizing you were wrong about everything you thought you knew” storyline, for respectful characters that I was constantly pleasantly surprised by, for only the occasional stupid teenager decision
A witch hunter is thrust into a magical, dragon-filled world…
At sixteen, Yanna Gray is part of her family’s Virginia based witch hunting enterprise, helping rid Earth of anything—and anyone—magic. But her militant life goes south when an enchanted amulet goes missing. Before Yanna can reclaim the artifact, the thief opens an interdimensional portal flinging Yanna into a frightening magical world.
Ragond is straight out of the forbidden fairy tales Yanna once read. Mythical creatures, witches, and mages live in harmony with humans. Here, all she’s grown up believing is turned on its head—especially when she discovers her own magical abilities.
Without access to a portal to Earth, Yanna is invited to shelter at Stonehaven—the training ground for witches, mages, and dragon riders—where she discovers true friendship, camaraderie, and a surprising bond with an ancient dragon. But all too quickly, Yanna’s magic-hunting past catches up to her.
Now, to save her friends and the dragon who partnered with her, Yanna must decide what she believes and who to trust.
Or her past might become Ragond’s downfall.
The simplest way I can review this book is to say that I will be continuing the series, for sure. Thankfully, they’re coming out one a month for the next few months!
This was a decent introduction to the world, and I can’t wait to meet more of the characters in it. There are a lot of books already set in this world, but I’m new to it and can’t wait not to be. Hooray that there are so many other books to read from here! 😀
I love books where the main character’s understanding of the world is challenged, and that is exactly what Yanna is going through. She’s a witch hunter, a killer of those who channel evil magic. But now that she’s in a world OF magic, and actually, she herself is now one of those evil magic users… maybe it’s worth a second thought. No surprise that there’s a lot of angst around this for Yanna as she wrestles with making her own decisions or adhering to what she has always been taught and trained.
I think angsty is actually a pretty good word for this book overall, because there was a lot of it. No shade, though. Yanna is literally and metaphorically thrown into another world! I’m pretty sure I’d lose my shit if dragons were suddenly overhead, too. I love the little pieces of lore thrown into the story as well to explain the differences between all the realms. Dragons being relegated to lizard form when on Earth was a delightful little touch.
There’s a bit of character development in here primarily for Yanna, with a little bit for the main people around her, but I think more will come as the series continues. There was so much time spent on her mindset and adjustment to the new world that most other things took a backseat. Action does NOT, however! This had a pretty quick pace to it, and there was usually one exciting thing or another happening. I was actually a little bored with the first section of time before she comes to Ragond, but once there, I was totally committed!
This book was by no means perfect. Some decisions made seemed a bit obtuse at times, or exposition dragged on a little to obviously like with a professor just giving two pages of history lessons. But you know what? It was really, really fun. At no point was I annoyed with that lengthy, non-subtle exposition because it was so interesting and I was so excited to learn more!
The conflict hinted at for the second book seems to be moving away from what we saw in this first book, but I’m not worried. I’m actually really thrilled for it because it’s a whole new type of conflict (and angst, I’m sure!) that will result. I don’t think we’re done with the issues from book one, though. And of course I cannot WAIT to see more of the DRAGONS AND MAGIC! Good thing this book is titled after both of those things. 😂
Have you read this already (or don’t mind knowing more)? View spoilers!
Maybe my favorite little thing that happened is at the end when the friend is kidnapped and she’s told to come alone, and she’s immediately like “well OBVIOUSLY I can’t go alone, that’s ridiculously stupid” and then she tells some trusted adults who are much more skilled and knowledgeable and they work together to come up with a plan. THANK YOU!
I also thought it was interesting that they seemed to hint that the only reason Yanna has all these remarkable powers is that she magically inherited them from a revered wizard’s artifact by accident. So it’s not like she’s particularly The Chosen One, Foretold, but more like she stumbled into it and I guess this is her life now. I hope we learn more about that in the next books!
Thanks to NetGalley and Relay Publishing for a free copy. This is my honest review!