Review: Seraphina (Seraphina #1) by Rachel Hartman


Title:  Seraphina
Author: Rachel Hartman
Publisher/Year:  Random House Children’s Books  7/10/12
Length:  480 pages
Series: Seraphina #1


Four decades of peace have done little to ease the mistrust between humans and dragons in the kingdom of Goredd. Folding themselves into human shape, dragons attend court as ambassadors, and lend their rational, mathematical minds to universities as scholars and teachers. As the treaty’s anniversary draws near, however, tensions are high.

Seraphina Dombegh has reason to fear both sides. An unusually gifted musician, she joins the court just as a member of the royal family is murdered—in suspiciously draconian fashion. Seraphina is drawn into the investigation, partnering with the captain of the Queen’s Guard, the dangerously perceptive Prince Lucian Kiggs. While they begin to uncover hints of a sinister plot to destroy the peace, Seraphina struggles to protect her own secret, the secret behind her musical gift, one so terrible that its discovery could mean her very life.

My Thoughts

What do you get when you cross a dragon with a human?

SERAPHINA (and perhaps at least 18 others)

Gotta love stories that dabble into the fantasy realm when they aren’t looking at angels, vampires, werewolves and things like that.  I have found that i LOVE to read those types of stories since they are familiar, yet it kind of seems like they all take a different twist that i find myself trying to guess where the twists are going to go and what characteristics they are going to have for their species.  not the case with Dragons.

the only other story that i’ve read recently that had some level of Dragon-ness or monsterness is Fire by Kristin Cashore.  i think there was some sense of dragons but more so as monsters than anything else.  regardless – i liked the diversion into the dragon realm and to see how those 2 species lived amongst one another

so, we are introduced to Phina, who is 1/2 dragon since her mother was a dragon but kind of hid that fact from well, just about everyone that wasn’t a dragon.  She was able to fit into her ‘human body’ well, and not let on that she wasn’t what she appeared to be.  interestingly, the man that fell in love with her then finds himself in a situation where he’s left surprised by a child that’s part dragon, and he himself gets into a profession where he’s the legal counsel defending all things dragon when they are brought against society/the palace for infractions

i like the plot line of a treaty that was put in place ages ago that generations may not support, and want to fight back and overturn.  that’s something that resonates with a lot of different non sci fy type stories.  i also liked the fact that there were all these factions in the society that were either fighting for or defending the dragons – showing that you can’t be told what to do – you have to make your own choices on that one.

what i want to get to know more about are

1)the quig developed figurines

2)the ‘grotesques’ that are in phina’s mind- who are they, how did they just appear to her, and can she ‘speak’ to all of them and can they talk to each other

3) what happens with Lucien and Phina (and Selda for that matter)

all so much to look forward to in book 2 (when ever that one comes out)

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