Book Review: Dragon Academy

“With high school finished for the summer, Nick looks forward to visiting his aunt and uncle in New Jersey. What awaits him is a heat wave like no other – and the two of the last Greywings on the planet. Nick has an innate ability to train horses but will he be able to translate his amazing skill to these teenage dragons? The steaming soup of mid-summer heats up tempers and tests resolve as Nick vies with fellow trainers, Keith and Maxie, for mastery over their new charges. The dragons, Nikita and Michael, typical teenagers themselves, have other ideas. Nick treads a torturous path through a minefield of competing demands: the expectations of his aunt and uncle, recalcitrant horses, the Academy’s female students and the overwhelming egos of Nikita and Michael. One small mistake erupts into a conflagration that hurls everyone into a race against time and the overwhelming forces of nature.” – from the publisher

There seems to be only two genres for authors these days, characterized by Twilight and Harry Potter. There are no vampires in this book but it does have similar angst to Twilight amongst its teen characters, only at a younger level. In the vein of Harry Potter, this book is similar in that a teen has to deal with not only complications in maturity but also a mystical element. This book has more of a balance of fantasy to reality seen in the Percy Jackson books, the real world affected by, in this case, dragons.

Make no mistake, this book stands on its own in being fresh and original. The very likable teens and their academy instructors have depth, defining moments, and growth. I found myself really feeling for them, wanting to intervene, as they made some poor choices. The environment is detailed yet comfortable with just  enough quirks to make it believable that dragons could exist in our reality. At  no time did I feel I knew what would happen, there were many directions the  story could take, and I look forward to seeing where this, (hopefully), series  will go.

Five paws (out of five)

About scavola

author of the gay 'Duke' and GLBT 'ATL Engineering' series
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