In this fascinating look at a modern-day world where dragons truly exist, the Newbery Medal-winning author of "The Hero and the Crown" takes readers ...Show synopsisIn this fascinating look at a modern-day world where dragons truly exist, the Newbery Medal-winning author of "The Hero and the Crown" takes readers into a controversial nature preserve, which about 200 of the worlds few remaining dragons call home.Hide synopsis
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What is it that Robin McKinley has that other fantasy writers don't? I can't quite put my finger on it, but I think it has to do with the fact that her characters are so REAL and she puts the reader straight inside the characters' heads. And then there's her uncanny ability to set a scene so totally that even your sense of smell gets a workout (especially in this book). Maybe the fairy of language presided over her birth and from then on she just had it.
Whatever the cause, "Dragonhaven" measures up to the best of her work, and also is a change of pace in that it features a male protagonist. I so enjoy her take on modern American society, in which this book and her previous, "Sunshine," take place. (with, of course, a fantasy twist to mix things up)
Here, she explores the idea of "What if dragons truly existed and we'd nearly caused their extinction, until they were limited to a few wildlife preserves?" and then creates a whole scientific background for this premise. The story is told from the point of view of a kid who was born at the research institute within the preserve. His whole life is centered around these creatures, and becomes even MORE so as the story unfolds, due to events that I won't spoil for you. "Dragonhaven" is a startlingly emotional, stirring account of what happens when a young person is thrust into strange responsibility, and a gripping narrative of ethical/environmental themes.
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