The problem with this story is that nothing really happens At first it comes off as a sort of quest narrative, but after Darna and her new friends reach Anamat, the story meanders around seemingly with no point It eventually goes somewhere, but I began to get irritated with its lack of progress towards any kind of a climax or resolution at about the halfway mark It didn t help that I absolutely despised one of the characters, Iola That would have been fine if she were one of the unsavory characters, but that wasn t why I couldn t stand her She wasn t someone I loved to hate She was just so ridiculously naive and clueless about everything, and on top of that, her fanatical religious beliefs caused her to betray her friends.One of the few elements that I enjoyed about this book is that the story is set in a very sexist world that also seems to treat its children as easily cast aside Unlike a couple other books I ve read this year, though, the main character is a young girl who chooses to go against societal pressures to make her own way in the world and not just accept her fate The girls in this story have backgrounds and character traits and physical descriptions They re not just decoration or plot points along the way.Overall, I didn t really like Scrapplings However, I didn t hate it either I think it deserves a chance if you truly love Fantasy, especially Fantasy involving dragons, or if you re tired of reading male centric trope filled quest narratives This isn t for you if you prefer fast er paced books, and I wouldn t recommend it for anyone who is new to the Fantasy genre. I had the privilege of reading Scrapplings in beta format, and thoroughly enjoyed the unusual world setting, the array of very memorable characters and the vivid descriptions of the surroundings I loved the idea that only some people can see the dragons, and even though there s a whole religion devoted to them, the priestesses are just as dragon blind as most of the population Being the first of five parts, the plot builds slowly, but things draw to a dramatic conclusion A good read for those who like their fantasy a little different Note No star rating, as I haven t read the finished book. Scrapplings could pass as an average middle grade fantasy with a strangely sordid background about ritual prostitution , but I suspect that even as a kid, the story would have failed to grab me The world of Anamat is poorly sketched out and the characters one note cutouts As soon as each character is introduced, we immediately get a flashback explaining their entire life history until that point It robs them of any chance to reveal secrets to each other or to the reader and strips them of any chance to develop.Without characters the reader can invest in, we turn to the plot, and again come up short After a while, it dawns on the reader that each chapter is only a daily accounting of where the characters were begging or foraging for food each day There isn t much of a greater plot, or an ongoing sense of urgency or purpose behind it There s no tension in this book, no excitement.The story has the potential to become something engaging in future books This may be one of those times when the adage about starting as close to the end as possible applies Was the entire plot of Scrapplings necessary, or does the story really start as I suspect in the final chapter Unfortunately, without a cast of characters to bond with, I m uncertain whether to give the series a second chance I received a free copy of the book for the purposes of reviewing I received no money for doing so. Really a 4.5 star.This one of those freebie kindle downloads I picked up not too long ago I m never sure when I pick one of these up whether it is going to be a rare find or something less When the book is a clear winner I always make certain to put readers on notice This fell into the rare find and clear winner categories.It is a coming of age story which apparently is going to have other books after to help wrap up what happens to our various troops of friends In that regard it is different than many coming of age stories as there is than one group our crippled heroine associates with.Life is hard, at best, for Darna, who can see the dragons that are worshipped in her kingdom Crippled from an early age she finds out that she is the daughter of the ruler of her town and rather than be confined and used by him this plucky youngster runs away to the city of Anamat in hopes of finding a new life as an apprentice to a guild.As with all YA coming of age stories she goes through trials and tribulations, but always manages to cope and even prosper by being willing to take risks and never give in For of the story than that, the reader really should buy a copy of the book I am looking forward to buying a copy of the following book to see what happens with Darna and whether we will find out what happens to her friends.Brava, Amelia SmithNote I have no connection at all to the author This is an unsolicited and uncompensated review. A new series that s about dragons and those who see them Darna may or may not be the daughter of a prince But she runs away before they can find out On her way to Anamat she meets up with Myril, both of them can see dragons and Myril can read other peoples thoughts.Upon their arrival in Anamat they meet up with Iola and her protector Throat.The story takes us with them through their summer trying to save enough money different size balls for their future.Iola says she will become a priestess Thorat will join a guild What will happen I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I love fantasy when it s done in a way that s both innovative and enjoyable That s certainly the case with Amelia Smith s Scrapplings Children of the Dragons, the first book in her Anamat series Read the publisher s blurb for all you really need to know about this story without anything being spoiled All that I will add is that Darna is an absolutely superb leading character, that Myril, Iola, Thorat and the rest of the supporting cast are perfectly crafted, and that the plot is well written really works beautifully by itself and as the start of s greater story arc But for the fact that I m literally dictating this review to my husband from my hospital bed I could go on and on with praises the book definitely deserves it Since I can t do that I will simply note that the book is most definitely one to read, and it is easy to highly recommend I m definitely looking forward to the next book in this series. Everyone In The Tiadun Keep Is Dragon Blind, Even The Priestesses Darna Pretends She Can T See The Realm S Guardian Dragon Either She Already Gets Teased Enough For Her Limp She Flees To The Legendary City Of Anamat, Where Some Still See The Dragons, Or So The Minstrels Say On Her Journey, She Meets Myril, An Older Scrappling Girl With An Eerie Sense Of Hearing And Frequent Premonitions Together, They Hope To Find Their Places In The CityThen There S Iola, Who Actually Wants To Be A Priestess She S So Dragon Struck That She Can T See Through The Temples Thin Veils Of Piety, Can T See The Priestesses Greed As They Fleece Their Sweaty DevoteesThorat Is Iola S Champion He Sees Dragons As Much As The Girls Do, But Unlike Them He S Very Good At Blending In With Normal Boys Darna Wishes He Would Notice Her Sometimes, TooIn The City, Darna Strikes Out On Her Own To Find Secret Passageways She Scavenges For Valuable Scraps To Sell If She Can T Buy A Guild Apprenticeship By Midsummer, She Ll Be Exiled From The City, Unless The Priestesses Take Her, Which Is The Last Thing She Wants So When She S Offered A Sack Full Of Gold Beads For A Small Bit Of Thieving, She Takes Her Chances And Ends Up Angering The Dragon Herself Scrapplings Is The First Book In A Five Part Series Book Two, Priestess, Is Due Out In April Most can t see but some can, but what do they really see This book is very interesting Characters are younger than I was thinking they were from the first couple of chapters but if you enjoy a story of young kids finding their way in the world then this is a good read.There are believers and non believers, those that can see and those that can t There are myths and rumours. Awesome story,a bit different than usual Darna dislikes where she is except for the dragons that not everyone can see Even when she runs away to a different place it s the same story Received a free copy and reviewed because I enjoyed it. Disclaimer I was given a free copy of this story in exchange for a fair review.Good job book you have done the near impossible made me interested in a series.This is a very character driven book, not the sort of thing you often see in high fantasy If you re expecting sword fights and overly powerful wizards look elsewhere Honestly the book is mostly concerned about crafting characters for likely a long standing series and only just tipping the toes into an over arching storyline The finale is underwhelming for how much build up there was Nevertheless if you prefer slice of life and very intricate plots, this is a book for you.The plot follows four main characters, four scrapplings or young adults just set adrift into the world For the peasant class in this society seems to expect young adults to fully find their way by either learning their parents trade or going to a city to learn another one The three girls we meet however are dragon touched , as in they have the potential for being priestess for having some capacity to interact with dragons.Most of the plot however is concerned with the four just trying to survive on the streets long enough to either earn enough to be accepted into an apprenticeship or be accepted into a temple at mid Summer The narrative voices are each distinct and well rounded The tone of the prose is slanted towards Young Adult so we don t have the pathos or complex characterizations we may expect in epics but each character adds their voice to the story and have a clear stake in the events around them They re interesting in their interactions and motives.Nevertheless the one who carries the story is Darna, the red headed runaway Prince s daughter whose story almost resembles Cinderella in that she works in the palace kitchen when we meet her Nevertheless her selfishness and natural aloofness set her far apart from any self sacrificing heroine She s often insensitive and outright mean, even though she does realize when she s been unkind She s a character with a great deal of potential who I like to keep following.The only real problem I have is in regards to Darna s chronic injury Her leg was apparently crushed by a boar as a child and never healed properly While Smith does a better job than most authors in remembering she has an injury and resulting limitations she doesn t quite capture how day to day life is with such an injury.I have a similar chronic injury in that I have a nerve injury in my right leg and hip that leads to muscle weakness and numbness Personally for me it is very tiring to walk on two legs because basically even with a cane as one leg is doing all the weight bearing as seems to be the same for Darna if her weak leg is withered from atrophy and thus work I could not walk for hours like Darna apparently does without several breaks Never mind how painful a bone injury that didn t set properly would be There would be bone pain and possibly chronic inflammation as nerves and muscles were rubbed against or pinched by an out of place bone Yet Darna apparently doesn t have any pain, even in the cold and wet A little bit research in portraying the disabled and acknowledging what our lives are really like would be nice.Also the book does use the word cripple I wouldn t call this offensive necessarily but I know how some people feel about it.Though in sum I was quite captured by this book and look forward to from the author.
Thanks to my grandmother, Nancy Woollcott Smith, I started out in life with the delusion that writing was a thing grown ups did Becoming a writer seemed almost as realistic an ambition as becoming an accountant, though less lucrative That delusion led me to a couple of decades of irregular and mostly profitless work, but it s also kept me going.In high school I wrote two novels with a friend We
- 320 pages
- Scrapplings (Anamat #1)
- Amelia Smith
- 27 March 2018 Amelia Smith