Legacy of the Dragonkin by Dan Wright
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Last year, I read the first book in Dan Wright's manga-inspired series. 'Trapped on Draconica' was a great introduction into this genre for me. I was especially surprised with just how much action and intensity each page contained. I think I described its pace as something like running a marathon while on amphetamines.
'Legacy of the Dragonkin' continues at much the same urgent pace. Ten years or so have passed since the first book. Daniar Dragonkin is now Queen of the land, married to Prince Kalak, whom she fell in love with in the previous story. They have a son, Benji, who desperately wants to follow in his mother's footsteps and be a brave warrior like she is, complete with her dragonkin abilities (flying, super-strength, fire power, etc). Unfortunately, for Benji, it appears that he's not been gifted with his mother's talents. Add to that disappointment his mother's over-protectiveness and his father's growing discontent and jealousy of Daniar's role, and you've got a family that's really struggling. Especially when Benji's impulsive nature gets out of control...
This depth is what I enjoyed most about 'Legacy'. The first book was certainly enjoyable, but the author really seemed to get a handle on these characters in this installment. I was much better able to connect with their emotions and inner conflicts this time around. I honestly didn't know who to trust half the time. I loved that the story kept me guessing.
The level of action is still much the same. New (and more powerful) enemies emerge as soon as others are defeated. If you're not familiar with the genre, the constant turnover may come across as cheesy and overdone, but from what I've learned of manga stories, it fits quite well. It's clear that Dan Wright has a handle on his chosen genre.
The main issue I had with the story was not being clear on the timing of past and current events. Some things that happened felt out of place. However, I did read an advanced copy, so it's very possible those issues were tightened in final edits.
My final verdict: If you (or your teen) are a fan of Manga and/or fantasy, you'll want to grab a copy of this and Trapped on Draconica. If you'd like the accompanying artwork, you may want to get the paperback copies that will be ready in August. Until then, grab an e-copy for a story that will leave you breathless and worn out--in a good way!
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