Title: The Summer Dragon
Author: Todd Lockwood
Series: The Evertide
Summary: Maia and her family raise dragons for the political war machine. As she comes of age, she hopes for a dragon of her own to add to the stable of breeding parents. But the war goes badly, and the needs of the Dragonry dash her hopes. Her peaceful life is shattered when the Summer Dragon–one of the rare and mythical High Dragons–makes an appearance in her quiet valley. The Summer Dragon is an omen of change, but no one knows for certain what kind of change he augurs. Political factions vie to control the implied message, each to further their own agendas.
And so Maia is swept into an adventure that pits her against the deathless Horrors–thralls of the enemy–and a faceless creature drawn from her fears. In her fight to preserve everything she knows and loves, she uncovers secrets that challenge her understanding of her world and of herself.
Belle Rating: A+
Bookworm Rating: A-
Overall Rating: A
Target Audience: Young Adults – Adults
*Minor Spoilers Below* – may include plot details such as: important names or events.
D – Yes, I know, I have ranked yet another book very high. But I will tell you that if you ever come to me asking for a book recommendation, I will chuck this book at your face and say “Don’t you dare speak to me again until you have finished this precious book!” Now if you’ll excuse me, I have urgent matters to attend to. *proceeds to fling self on bed and cry over fictional characters*
L – I think one of my favorite things about this book is the main character, Maia. She was very relatable and was pretty unique. I’ve read a lot of fantasy novels and I find that a few books could switch main characters with another book and I’d never know the difference. Maia wasn’t like that she had the pretty typical, my family raises “animals” and I want one of my own, thing going at first. But as the book developed she grew a lot more and became really fun to follow.
D – The other characters are really nice too. They are complex. You don’t know whose side they are on until it’s flat out mentioned. Which makes you really want to punch all of them in the face at some point. Others you want to straight up murder…which I guess is what makes the book so good. You end up appreciating the characters more.
L – The book starts out introducing us to Maia and her family. They raise dragons for }The Dragonry of the Emperor” and at a certain age each of them get their own dragon to raise. They fly these dragons and other fun dragon stuff, but the main point of keeping a few is for breeding purposes. Maia is excited because she’s due to get a dragon but then some stuff starts happening and it looks like she isn’t going to get one.
D – Both Maia and her brother, Darian, are a bit bummed so they decide to take their minds off of the possibility of not receiving a precious qit of their own by checking traps in the forest around their aeries. All of a sudden, a massive dragon landed directly in front of them. It just so happened to be Getig, the Summer Dragon. The dragon that brings change. So they took it as a sign that they would each get the qit they want.
L – They, of course, report seeing the dragon and it brings a bunch of soldiers and religious leaders to their aerie. There are people who believe them and people that don’t. This causes a ton of additional problems. To avoid too much spoiler territory, let’s just say that there are ancient ruins, monsters, and possibly a “stolen” qit (baby dragon). I know that it’s pretty vague, but trust me the book is really good and full of interesting twists and turns.
D – Yea, all I can say is poor Maia. Everything and everyone at some point and time is against her. Thus my comment above when I want to punch/murder just about every character mentioned…
L – Todd Lockwood is a brilliant author. The Summer Dragon is a very complex book. But he does such a good job with it that this doesn’t make it confusing. His writing style just completely draws you in.
D – Yes, he does an amazing job. Plus he has lovely pictures throughout the book too! Lockwood was (and maybe still is??) an artist for Dungeons and Dragons. His work is beautiful.
L – I think that his previous experience with art helped him build his world better. The world of The Summer Dragon is super vibrant and detailed.
D – And I think you won’t be able to fully appreciate his level of detail unless you read it a few times. He leaves some very subtle information throughout his story that you might overlook. I know I did when I read it the first time.
D – Like I’ve stated before, Lockwood has got a lot of juicy details for such a relatively short book. For me, some things were easily overlooked while I was reading.
L – There a lot of characters in this book. For the most part it’s easy to tell them apart, but there are times when a few of them blur together a bit. It’s easy enough to think back and realize who the author is talking about, but a couple of times I had some people confused with each other. (Mostly all the dudes that showed up together.)
D – I agree. I was tempted to write all their names down somewhere with a little description of how they are tied to the main character. It was all fine and dandy for a little while, but then people showed up and they had dragons that all had names and it was hard to tell who was who anymore.
D – I was so grateful for all the maps and pictures that Todd Lockwood offered. It made it all the easier to visualize what he was trying to describe. I know of several books that could have benefited with maps and other visual aids.
L – I love how Todd Lockwood was able to take what would be a pretty typical high-fantasy adventure and make it even more interesting. He introduced a lot of story elements but he was able to keep them all pretty believable within his world. Which can be a super tricky thing to do.
D – It also helps that the book is about DRAGONS! Which, if you don’t know by now, I absolutely love reading about. He puts a nice twist to it though. It’s less magicky and more about the training and relationships that the riders share with their mounts. It makes you want a qit for your very own.
L – We really recommend this one for anyone who is looking for a really vibrant fantasy story and anyone who really loves dragons. *whispers* like the belle
D – Someone please stick a pair of wings on a lizard for me!! I needs a dragon…..