Dragon hunters have a special link to their apprentices called a mage who are proficient in protection spells and keep them safe.
Dragon hunters are fortunate enough to be protected by this powerful masking spell allowing them to enter and get close to dragons. We meet Dirkla, a mage who has been protecting the Emperor’s Wizard’s for two days and has gone without sleep. The Emperor is a sadistic and cruel man and will stop at nothing to gain more power, kill anyone in his wake that might be more powerful and take what belongs to others and make it his namely in this case the coveted Dragon Stones that lie within the throats of these about to be slain infant dragons. Worried that they were running out of food to feed their young three female dragons leave their cave unguarded thinking it safe to fly away.
But, the mother dragons or females had no riders and preferred to raise their young alone. But, what happens is sad and the carnage huge as these men enter the nest of these unprotected dragons and the rest you can imagine. The talons are worth a lot and so are the stones but one greedy hunter would learn the price he paid for not listening to the others but the Emperor Vosper would be the only one to prosper.
Elias Dorgumir is a young boy living with his grandmother who is a mage. A mage has a special gift. Hers is to heal and the gift of sight. Seeing darkness overcoming and looming in her direction she decides to share a family story and secret with her young grandson. Leaving to go and give his young friend an herb to ease her monthly pain you learn more about this young man and the dangers involved in just going on a simple errand. The Emperor is so paranoid that he kills his own family in order to retain all the power he needs over everyone and should he learn of any more powerful mage living in his kingdom death would come with a sharp and swift blow.
But, two have escaped him. One man named Mitca would grow stronger and his kingdom of Parthos protected. The other a dark and black place the Island of Death ruled by Balbor. Even the Emperor would not venture there. Those living there are mercenaries and those leaving there are trained assassins.
But, there is much more as our young Elias ventures out to get his grandmother some much-needed mushrooms and he stumbles upon a huge beehive hoping to bring home so coveted honey. Carina, his grandmother is wise and when she discovers what he has brought she is excited but what is revealed within the jar and hidden would change the course of this young boy’s life, as within the jar is an emerald. The emerald did not come from a jeweler but from within the throat of a dragon hunter. The part found belonged to the hunter and the other half would still be inside of the dragon as there is an image carved into the stone of a cameo.
The other half would be smooth within the dragon. The stone being undamaged might mean the hunter is still alive but when his grandmother warns him to keep this quiet and return the stone to its rightful place, Elias disobeys and what happens will put him in danger. Going to the market and meeting with a man named Frogar he hopes to bargain with him to purchase the stone for a hefty price. What he gets will surprise the reader as the man claims the stone is cursed and rids himself of Elias. Will he tell anyone as his grandmother warned him that if the Emperor or his men found out they would be in serious trouble or worse?
Enter the characters of Parthos and the residents as the author shares the methods used to rehabilitate and care for dragons. Black are juveniles and onyx the largest dragons and each one growing in size able to handle a rider. Brinsop is a dragon that saved Orshek and Karela and they have become attached to him. Orshek is speaking to his mother telepathically asking for her return but she has to take care of the castle. But, the two young dragons are impatient and await their mother’s return as we learn that Karela is fragile and her brother overprotective and both totally spoiled. But, when King Mitca informs everyone about the emerald dragon stone and its possible origin much discussion ensues someone has to leave the safety of Parthos and learn more. Finding the mage and bringing back the stone would be the start as Sela leads the discussion of those present and the reader learns that a rider named Chua was the owner of the stone and his dragon Starclaw lost or dead. But, was he really a traitor as some say? Which one is either might be alive? Let’s bring this back to Elias and find out what happens next.
The author captures the reader’s attention from the first page as she begins with the horrors that befell the poor dragons, the secrets that Elias learns from his grandmother and the fate of the dragons that are safe and being cared for. The story is intricate yet not complicated for young reader’s to understand and the vivid descriptions help the reader visualize the characters and the scenes.
Elias is not longer save as soldiers find their way to his front door placing him in grave danger and forcing him to seek refuge before the Emperor’s wrath and violence comes down on him. Hoping to make it to the safety of the dwarf caverns he will encounter many obstacles on the way. But, can he save the dragons that are still alive and will he come to the aid of the dragon race? But, when the soldiers come to the door his grandmother does something that would prevent him from being caught, deal with the soldiers but at what cost? As Elias runs toward to Darkmouth Forest he meets a dwarf named Thorin who guides him. With his grandfather’s cloak and his dagger they enter the forest, Elder Willow and hopefully are protected from harm as Elias recounts what happened and why he disobeyed his grandmother. Guilt ridden and sad he would have to forge ahead.
As they make their journey Elias begins to learn more about his past and what his grandmother wanted him to learn from a note and her journal. Spells that would help him survive and magic that might get him past those trying to find and kill him. The dwarves would protect him and the incantations he would learn would hopefully help him survive but what about what the Emperor has planned to Parthos and Mount Velik where the dwarves live? What about the necromancer that did not see him under the concealment spell but found him later on? Who was this female and why was his life spared? What does King Mitca tell Sela that needs to be done to prepare for the battles ahead and which Dragon Riders and dragons would have to risk their lives to save their race? What happens when Duskeye and Tallin leave to find the Dragon Stone? The answers to these questions and the fate of everyone will not be answered until you read Book Two of the Saga and the final book three.
What does the Emperor really fear and what is the prophesy that will destroy him and take away his power? Power hungry, revengeful and hoping to destroy the dwarves and those that harbor the dragon riders. What will happen next as author Kristian Alva continues the saga and this reviewer cannot wait to find out what happens next. One young boy named Elias who is brave, smart and willing to put his life on the line for others and the memory of his grandmother fresh within his mind and thoughts. One book that teaches loyalty, trust, understanding and hope for the future. What is the fate of the stone?
Fran Lewis – author of:
Faces Behind the Stones
the Bertha Series
Memories are Precious
Because We Care
Sharp As A Tack of Scrambled Eggs Which Describes Your Brain