Welcome to Wednesday, even though it feels like a Tuesday. Loved the Monday holiday, but now I feel like I am a day late and a dollar short. Trying to catch up! I have a fun book for you today. Are you looking for something different? How about dragons and time travelers? That is what you will find in Mari Mancusi's latest book Scorched. I have Mari here today to tell you a bit more about dragons! First, let me introduce you to Mari:
Mari Mancusi always wanted a dragon as a pet. Unfortunately the fire insurance premiums proved a bit too large and her house a bit too small--so she chose to write about them instead. Today she works as an award-winning young adult author and freelance television producer, for which she has won two Emmys.
When not writing about fanciful creatures of myth and legend, Mari enjoys goth clubbing, cosplay, watching cheesy (and scary) horror movies, and her favorite guilty pleasure—playing videogames. A graduate of Boston University, she lives in Austin, Texas with her husband Jacob, daughter Avalon, and their dog Mesquite. You can find Mari on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.
Please welcome Mari!
Dragons by Mari Mancusi
Dragons! In a way, dragons are like vampires. (Though don’t tell them that, unless you want to get flambéed!) They’re mythical creatures with a long oral and written history that goes back centuries. While some aspects of dragons (fire breathing, ability to fly, etc.) have become familiar tropes, there are also many differences between dragons in different works. Some are friendly like Saphira in Eragon and some are downright evil, like Maur in Hero and the Crown. Each author picks and chooses the mythos that works for them and then adds their own special touches to make the dragons their own.
The dragons in Scorched are flying, fire-breathing beasts of varying colors that lived before the Ice Ages amongst the dinosaurs. With the climate change, they became extinct. Well, except for one egg, that was preserved in a glacier for millions of years. However increasing global warming caused that glacier to melt and the egg was found by researchers and brought to a Texas museum.
Dragons are big—they can grow as big as a one-story house. But when they’re born they’re merely the size of a small baby bird. They prefer dark, closed in spaces—like caves, crave food like a Labrador Retriever (and are not above begging for table scraps!), and are very loyal to those who they place their trust. They come in a myriad of gemstone colors: emerald green, sapphire blue, ruby red. Red dragons are the rarest and most valued amongst their own species.
Dragons have some telepathic powers and can bond with select humans who also possess this gift. Humans cannot choose their own dragons—the dragons must choose them. Once they become fully bonded, their life forces are intertwined and what happens to one will also happen to the other. Once bonded, the dragons will speak with their humans telepathically.
Before dragons are born and after they die they exist in a place called the Nether, a world beyond time and space, existing in the collective unconscious of all dragons. A lucky few who possess the gift can travel to this place and interact (and even ride!) all the dragons that ever were and will be.
It’s important to remember these dragons, though magical, are animals and thus neither inherently good or evil. They are products of their environment and can be deadly if mistreated or put in the wrong hands. Since they are wild creatures they become restless if they are kept in captivity and may lash out and misbehave if not allowed to exercise properly.
It was so much fun to explore the world of dragons in Scorched! I hope readers love these gentle (and not so gentle) giants just as much as I do.
The dragons in Scorched were terrific! I hope you all get a chance to read this one! A huge thanks to Mari for taking time to post with me today! I am super excited to tell you that the good folks over at Sourcebooks are kindly sponsoring today's giveaway! One lucky reader will win a copy of Scorched by Mari Mancusi. To enter fill out the Rafflecopter after reading the Contest Policies. This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. Good Luck!a Rafflecopter giveaway
Here is my review:
Scorched by Mari Mancusi
Don’t leave me here... It starts with a whisper. At first Trinity thinks she’s going crazy. It wouldn’t be a big surprise—her grandpa firmly believes there’s a genuine dragon egg in their dusty little West Texas town. But this voice is real, and it’s begging for her protection. Even if no one else can hear it...
He’s come from a future scorched by dragonfire. His mission: Find the girl. Destroy the egg. Save the world.
He’s everything his twin brother Connor hates: cocky, undisciplined, and obsessed with saving dragons.
Trinity has no idea which brother to believe. All she has to go by is the voice in her head—a dragon that won’t be tamed.
Four Stars: An exciting blend of genres and dragons!
It is Christmas Eve and Trinity is looking forward to opening her latest role playing computer game that Grandpa insisted on buying, even though they are terribly short on cash. Grandpa's magnificent fossil museum is about to be foreclosed unless there is a miracle. Before they head home, Grandpa tells Trinity he has something special to show her. He insists it is a real live dragon egg that was found in the ice in Antarctica. Trinity is sick to think that her sweet Grandpa was duped into buying a fake dragon egg with the money that was supposed to pay their taxes. Now they will lose everything. Unless it is really and truly a dragon egg......
What I Liked:
- Scorched is a book that blends several popular genres. It is a bit of fantasy as it features dragons, some dystopian as there is a dragon infested, apocalyptic future, time travelers bring in a bit of sci fi, a bit of contemporary as it is set in the present day, and a fast paced, adventurous story line. This book has something for everyone.
- Dragons! Why aren't there more books with dragons? I loved everything about the dragons. The dragons in this one can be dangerous and deadly able to incinerate someone with one mighty fiery breath or they can be fun and tame like a giant pet, and they can speak telepathically with their bonded human. Who wouldn't want to spend an afternoon soaring on the back of a dragon? I enjoyed learning all about the fire breathing giants, and I liked that I recognized elements from other famous stories. One unique concept regarding the dragons in this book was the existence of the Nether. The Nether is a place where dragons exist before they are born and after they die. A human can access the Nether in their mind with special gems. Once in the Nether, they can conjure up anything, but it does come with a price. I thought the whole idea of the Nether was exciting and interesting.
- I liked that this book kept me guessing the entire time as to who the bad guys really were. Two twins, Caleb and Connor, time travel back from an apocalyptic future. They hail from two hundred years in the future. Their world has been scorched and decimated by dragons. The surviving humans are forced to live underground to avoid a fiery death. The boys each have their own agenda. One seeks to destroy Trinity's dragon egg and thus prevent the dragon decimation. The other wants to save the egg and put Trinity and the dragon on a new path. Who is right? Who is the villain? The twins aren't alone. Another group of people know as the Drachen have traveled back with their own motives. It is a race to Trinity and the dragon egg, and you honestly don't know who to trust from one chapter to the next. Trinity is manipulated and lied to until the final pages. It was exciting and suspenseful not knowing everyone's true intentions. I liked the twists and revelations and was excited to see how everything played out.
- I enjoyed the inclusion of the twins Caleb and Connor. The two brothers have been at odds since their father's death. One seeks to destroy all dragons while the other wants to save them. One is the golden boy who can do no wrong, while the other seeks a bit of the spotlight. Nothing is as it seems and you will be surprised to find you are constantly changing your mind about the boys. I liked learning more about the brothers and how they ended up on their paths.
- I adored Trinity's grandpa. He is sweet and kind and a bit gullible, but he has the best intentions. He was adorable, and I especially liked the lengths he went to help Trinity, even if that meant logging onto a video game. I only hope that he plays a larger role in the next book!
And The Not So Much:
- I found that I wanted more detail on the future. I longed for a further explanations on what life was like for Connor and Caleb. How did they survive in the underground cities? Could they grow crops? What were their food sources? I also wanted to know more about the good and bad dragons. How were some dragons able to be tamed? I had some questions about the apocalyptic future and I am hoping for more answers in the next book.
- There was no explanation on the time travel. While sometimes it is easier not to have all the how and the catastrophic consequences involved with changing the future, I felt like I needed to know a bit more about how they achieved traveling back in time. When one of the boys travels back he arrives well past his target date. Who tampered with his trip? What were the theories on what would happen once they altered the sequence of events in the past?
- The romance is difficult. It doesn't really take off and it ends up being a bit of a befuddling love triangle. It seems that each of the twins is attracted to Trinity, and each sort of makes a move, but Trinity, thankfully, doesn't fall for either one of them as of yet, because she honestly doesn't know who to trust. Everything is up in the air. I am not sure if this will continue to develop into a full fledged love triangle or not, I am hoping that it will settle out and not go into the dreaded triangle territory. If you are expecting a full fledged romance, you will be disappointed. This one is more of laying out a bit of foundation and a few sparks.
- The whole dragon reproduction was a bit confusing as well. It seems that the dragons returned after the hatching of the egg that was found in the ice. Scientists then tampered with DNA and recreated some additional dragons. I was curious to know a bit more about how this was done and also more about the dragons' eggs and how they reproduced.
Scorched is a solid and exciting book that blends a variety of genres along with dragons, time travelers and lots of action. If you looking for a fast paced read that will keep you guessing up until the final pages, pick this one up. I enjoyed this book, and I am eager to see how the romance and the story will progress in the next book. Bring on more dragons!
"I don't suppose you have any spare plutonium?" "Um, no. Sorry. Not exactly something they stock at the local Walmart."
"His kiss was soft, gently----a wisp of a butterfly's wings against her lips. And yet it left a trail of blazing fire in its wake. And, more importantly, a promise."
"The last time she'd played was with Caitlin, who passionately believed the game's only redeeming quality was its hook-up potential. Trin had never had the heart to tell her that the majority of the strapping elves she flirted shamelessly with were probably actually forty-year old men living in their mothers' basements."
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for this review.