“Despite the mythological antiquity of the creature under them – one that shouldn’t even exist – the city toward which they flew looked as modern as the one Terra had grown up in.”
– To Light the Dragon’s Fire, Locations 265-267
Terra Heegan is entering into an arranged marriage, in order to save her family’s business. She decides that she wants one last fun weekend as a single, independent woman. She ropes her sister, Lanni, into a rock climbing expedition into the Mountains of Wyoming. This take a bit of a mythological turn when they happen upon a slumbering dragon, who speaks in riddles. The dragon takes the women to meet the Dragon King, Draven Taraxus.
He is a reluctant leader but has brought peace to the realms in his charge. Being on the throne for 100 years has created boredom and despondence. There is plotting and scheme happening right under the King’s nose. Suddenly, there is a fiery redheaded human making his heart stop and igniting his fire but can he keep his people from a civil war?
This was an easy read. The imagery was fantastic and the language clear to follow. I especially liked that Taylor didn’t feel the need to explain every tiny detail about this marvelous world she has created. You need to figure everything out, along with the protagonists.
Particularly impressive was that Taylor’s ability to effortlessly create multiple worlds, and I don’t just mean mythological ones. There are various realms, as one would expect in a fantasy novel but I am referring to the human realm as well. The book is clearly set in our future. Human society and living conditions are different but so smoothly integrated into the narrative that I found myself not even batting an eye at what I was reading. Taylor writes so naturally that this was a pleasure to read.
‘“If we knew, we wouldn’t ask to know, now would we?” she said, tapping a boot against the roof. Draven could hear the wariness in Arin’s reply. “I suppose not. Very well. You are in Bra’ka, the Capitol City.” Terra spoke up, once more drawing his gaze. “Of?”
Draven blinked, almost scared to look at her again. “Of?” Those gorgeous silver eyes pinched into a glare, rolling over him like he was a stupid, just-hatched youngling. “Of what? The Capitol of what?” “The Third Kingdom,” he replied. “Bra’ka is the Capitol of the Third Kingdom.” The two humans exchanged a look, and it was Lanni that spoke, her voice a low whisper he had no trouble hearing with his hyper-sensitive ears. “I don’t think we’re in Kansas anymore, sis.”’
(Kindle Locations 336-340)
I’m not a fantasy fan, by any stretch of the imagination. I’m more of a real world application girl, so this was a worthwhile experiment for me. Just because I am not a fan of a genre doesn’t mean I don’t still read a few of the books here and there. This is toted as a love story/romance but really it’s an adventure/fantasy novel with moments of romance, and that is what made all the difference. I was expecting a bubblegum story with the romance taking centre stage. In fact, this book is written the other way around. Great story with a dash of romance and a healthy dose of intrigue. Plus there is more than one love story happening so it’s really two for the price of one…
There is definitely a lot happening in the plot but the story doesn’t feel overburdened. I thoroughly enjoyed the fanciful world that the author created, and as someone with a soft spot for all things mythological, I think that the author’s renditions of famous mythological creatures was refreshing and very creative. Each group has their own backstory and realms but without the tedium that usually comes with this kind of writing. I absolutely love that the darkest magic is wielded by the evilest creatures – unicorns.
I have two criticisms: the first is the god awful cover art, and the second is the name of the series.
This cover is in no way a fair reflection of the story and may result in some readers feeling cheated. You expect a shitty 130 page novella with people falling in love overnight, when you look at this cover. This is not the case. The characters are well developed and the plot is tightly woven. Regarding my second criticism, the book is fully titled as: To Light The Dragon’s Fire: Dragons, Griffons and Centaurs, Oh My! Just why? I’m sure it seemed witty at first but, again, it cheapens the actual value of this work. Please consider changing the cover art and title, Ms Taylor…
This is a fantasy light book. It’s not going to ever rival Tolkien but I don’t think that that’s what the author is going for. It’s a fantastic story with really funny and relatable protagonists, with a slice of happy on the side. It does have a cliff hanger ending but this made me want to jump right into the next book in the series. If you want a change of pace or you just want to try a genre you’ve not really enjoyed before, like me, then I would recommend you give this one a go.
My rating: 4/5
Buy To Light the Dragon’s Fire at Amazon.
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