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Review - Seraphina

Friday, August 3, 2012
Seraphina (Seraphina #1)
by Rachel Hartman

Publication: July 10, 2012
Pages: 467
Author: Website | Facebook
Publisher: Random House Children's Books
Buy it: Amazon | KindleB&N | Book Depository

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.

Once I started the first page of Seraphina, I was enthralled with Seraphina's world and could not put down my Kindle until I read the last words. And even then, I couldn't let go of her brilliantly crafted world. Although peace has been made between humans and dragons, there are those on both sides who disprove of the peace treaty and who seek to disrupt it. Seraphina, must protect her secret, or she will be alienated from both sides, as her very existence threatens to cause chaos. Because of this, she hasn't let herself get close to anyone; she walks a fine line between making use of her musical talent and being friendly to people while keeping to herself. I admire her for  the years that she has spent cultivating her front and her courage to work in the castle despite her fears of being found out.

Rachel Hartman has given us a whole new dragon mythology. I loved every bit of it. Calculating dragons who don't understand emotional humans, and vice versa? It sets up the story for conflict and misunderstanding. I enjoyed learning about dragons and their relations with humans. Rachel Hartman has done a fantastic job building Seraphina's world. As I read, I could see the scene play out before me. It was fantastical and magical. The mystery behind Prince Rufus's death was just as well-done and filled with twists that I was not expecting. I had fun trying to puzzle the meaning behind various pieces of evidence along with Seraphina and Prince Lucian--and, yes, I had fun being proven wrong. I'm no match for the intelligence and calculating wit of a dragon!

The story takes time to build. At first, Seraphina's visions and memories will not make any sense, but they all come together to reveal her innermost fears and joys, making her into the strong young woman that she is at present. She is one of my favorite heroines: independent yet vulnerable, wanting friendship yet lacking trust. I enjoyed watching her grow over the novel. It takes time for her to trust people long enough for comradeship and love to develop, and the emotions are real and raw. The love story follows this same progression; it is slow to develop and all the more real and moving for the sacrifices made for the greater good.

Seraphina finally finds what she has been looking for all her life, but there is more for her to do before she can find peace. While there is a strong conclusions for this book, it also gives hints as to what is coming up next, and I am dying to find out how it all plays out. Seraphina is a must-read for fantasy lovers and has made my favorites list. I cannot wait until book two is released next year!!



Disclaimer: I received an ARC of this book from the publisher. No payment was received in return for a review. The receipt of the book had no influence on the opinions expressed in my review.
11 comments on "Review - Seraphina"
  1. You're killing me reading all these books before me. I really want to read this and Throne of Glass, which you also already read. Thanks for the great review.

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    1. Everyone else is doing the same to me ;) There are so many wonderful books out there, that I can't read them before everyone else either!!

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  2. I've requested this at my library and it can't come in fast enough! Awesome review, it's gotten me even more excited! (if that was even possible)

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  3. I loved this book too! I haven't read many dragon books, which is why I was interested but I ended up loving everything, being thrilled way beyond my expectations.

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    1. I'm glad to hear that. This book surpassed any expectations I might have had going into it as well. It's amazing!!

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  4. This looks like an awesome book. I haven't read it yet but I love dragons.

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    1. Then you'll love this book!! Great writing with dragons!! :)

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  5. I just heard about this one and put it on my birthday wish list!! <3
    Btw, I know this sounds geeky, but I think Seraphina is the most beautiful name ever! Even without the awesome dragons, I'd pick this book up off the shelf for the name alone lol :)

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    1. I agree. As soon as I saw the name "Seraphina" on the cover, I had to read this one. When I saw what it was about, that sealed it for me!

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  6. Oowww this one's going on my to read list :)

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