Release: 11th April 2015
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Dragons
Other books by Marc Secchia:
Shapeshifter Dragons (Series)
Shioni of Sheba (Series)
Stabbed. Burned by a dragon. Abandoned for the windrocs to pick over. The traitor Ra’aba tried to silence Hualiama forever. But he reckoned without the strength of a dragonet’s paw, and the courage of a girl who refused to die.
Only an extraordinary friendship will save Hualiama’s beloved kingdom of Fra’anior and restore the King to the Onyx Throne. Flicker, the valiant dragonet. Hualiama, a foundling, adopted into the royal family. The power of a friendship which paid the ultimate price.
This is the tale of Hualiama Dragonfriend, and a love which became legend.
I was flickering (I'm already on the puns ;D) between 4 stars and 5 stars for this book but I finally settled on the latter since it was my fault I found it confusing at times for picking completely the wrong period of time to read it! It took way longer than I expected to read this book but it was definitely worthwhile. It's not actually that long, however due to the nature of the writing it takes a lot of focus and can't just be lightly read like most YA novels.
The book begins with an adopted princess named Hualiama being thrown off a dragonship by Ra'aba, an evil power-seeker who's trying to steal the throne from the rightful king. As you can tell, she didn't die; that wouldn't have been much of a story! She's saved by a feisty dragonet called Flicker. As the story progressed Hualiama and Flicker search to save the Onyx Throne and in the process attempt to figure out Hualiama's past and why she remembers being raised by dragons.
First off, I'd like to mention the impressive character and relationship development at the beginning, when Flicker is looking after Hualiama. It was weeks ago when I read the first couple of chapters and I still remember how in awe I was of how they bonded and got to know each other. Honestly, I think that was my favourite section. Flicker is like no other character I've ever seen before and he quickly became my favourite dragon character - and I've read a lot of dragon books! His attitude towards humans, including Hualiama, had me laughing throughout the novel and was the main factor in keeping me interested before the dragon Grandion was introduced. The development of Grandion's character wasn't as great as Flicker's but it was still impressive. In fact, all the character relationships in this book were pretty amazing.
One thing I have to say about this book though, is it can be confusing as heck. With all the old English language and new made-up words it was a challenging read. Although I did enjoy the language used, I wouldn't recommend this to anyone who'll be preoccupied whilst reading it. It needs a heck of a lot of concentration. So basically, don't read it whilst you're doing exams. Tried and tested. Doesn't work. I had to break off every few chapters to think about what was happening so I'll definitely be setting aside some devoted reading time for the next in the series.
Back onto a bright note, this book is one on its own. Normally I'd be saying who I recommend it to here but I honestly have no idea. I've never read anything like it. As I tweeted last week, Dragonfriend is more of an experience than a story. The lyrical writing takes you on an extremely strange journey of thoughts and emotions and you come out from reading this as if you're waking up from a pretty amazing dream. I'm not entirely sure how to explain the feeling of reading Dragonfriend but it's different. I recommend you give it a go because, whether you come out loving or hating it, you won't ever forget reading it.
This book is the first in a series.