Fangirling over The Dragon and the Scholar

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I recently caught two colds in a row. I was sick last weekend, got better midweek, ate far too much ice cream, and got another cold.

I blame the ice cream. It was chocolate mint cookie.

Anyway, I’ve spent a lot of time just lying around, staring blankly at the wall or my ipod, and I’ve let the kids play far too many games. I’m at this moment calculating how many naps I can grab if I get them Pokemon Uranium.

Then I noticed that one of my friends, Heidi Lynn Burke (or H. L. Burke), had released the final book in her Dragon and the Scholar series. I’d read her lovely Beggar Magic
back in December, and I know she’s a great writer. And hey, if the series was good, I’d read the whole thing.

Oh my. The first book, <a href=”http://Dragon’s Curse (The Dragon and the Scholar Book 1), was so very excellent.

Here’s the official summary:

On her first assignment out of the Academy, young healer and scholar, Shannon Macaulay is summoned to the struggling kingdom of Regone to see to the wounds of a young but crippled king. When the unwanted attentions of an aggressive knight and the sudden appearance of a hated dragon turn her world upside down, she decides to take matters into her own hands even if doing so proves dangerous.

Finding herself strangely drawn to the company of the dragon, Gnaw, Shannon must force herself out of her safe world of books and botany to come to the aid of her unexpected ally in a strange kingdom, cursed by a fateful encounter with a dragon and the loss of a beloved prince. Can she learn to put aside her fears, and perhaps sacrifice her deepest desires, to help a friend and restore a family?

So you get the gist–Shannon is a bookish healer with impressive credentials, and almost zero real life experience. She can’t wait to get out of the Academy and have an adventure, so she persuades her superior and friend Martin to let her go. He does, grudgingly, and she comes to the court of King Edmond.

Edmond has been badly burned and poisoned by dragons. See, his brother got eaten up by a dragon, leading to the death of his dad. Edmond tried to kill the dragon in question, but this became a campaign against all dragons. Which worked fine until he got chewed up.

A dragon comes to live on a nearby mountain, and Edmond froths at it, but he’s too sick to do anything about it. Shannon, however, is fascinated. But she’s also being stalked by one of those puffed up jock-type knights that we all love to hate, and he tells the king that he’ll kill the dragon if the king will give him Shannon for a bride.

Seeing as this is horrible and awful, Shannon goes to the dragon to warn it off. Except the dragon is just as smart as she is, and snarky, and funny, and lonely, and likes for her to read him books. After the dragon defeats the knight, she does just that … and we begin to suspect that there’s more to this dragon than meets the eye.

This book is kind of like The Enchanted Forest Chronicles for a YA audience. (You know, Dealing with Dragons, Searching for Dragons, etc. by Patricia C. Wrede). I say an older audience because of the insinuation of what the knight wants to do to Shannon, and the growing romance between her and the dragon. (The final book is called Dragon’s Bride. We can kind of see where this is going.)

Oh, but the cover is so terrible. Look at it.

dragons-curse

That cover alone is why I haven’t read it before now. It definitely needs something like this.

Via Tumblr: http://teacoffeebooks.tumblr.com/post/5635523747
Via Tumblr: http://teacoffeebooks.tumblr.com/post/5635523747

Or this:

dragon-and-girl-silhouette

Or even this:

640x1024_13353_Jade_2d_fantasy_dragon_cover_novel_woman_girl_picture_image_digital_art

But yeah, I intend to pick up the rest of the books in this series posthaste.

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