Aranya by Marc Secchia

This was an interesting book to be sure. I loved the premise, shapeshifter dragons who don’t realise what they are until their “other selves” are needed.

I think the synopsis on the back cover is a little misleading, Aranya was never chained to a rock, and she wasn’t killed by her boyfriend (her crush, yes, but nothing more).

The dragons of old have been forgotten, replaced by dragonships, huge flying vessels for both travel and destruction. All talk of dragons has been outlawed, and none with the memories are safe to live.

The island nation of Sylakia has been taking over all other islands in the world, led by the First War-Hammer and Butcher of Jerardia, Garthion. Our heroine, Aranya, is from on of these island nations. She is a princess taken captive in order to show fealty to Sylakia. And so it begins….

Aranya slowly grows as a character, she makes an unlikely friend, Zip, and meets her crush, Yolathion. Her imprisonment ends with a confrontation with the First War Hammer and her being branded an enchantress. This leads to her being flung from the Long Walk, a huge cliff leagues above the ocean, to her death.

But of course it doesn’t end there, she is a shapeshifter dragon. Something thought to be long extinct among with all the other dragons and their kin. Aranya must now learn to harness her new dragon abilities and strive to get back at Sylakia and their tyranny.

This was a hard book to get through for me. Parts of the tale dragged on and I felt that some of the conversations seemed staged and weak. The trails and abilities of Aranya were unbelievable overall. She turned out to have many different rare abilities which stretched the realm of possibilities and made me push the “I believe” button a bit too much for my tastes.

I did enjoy the book overall, but I’m not sure I would continue the series. It just seemed to fall short of my expectations.

Disclaimer: via Reading Deals Review Club I was provided with a complimentary copy of this book so I could give an honest review.