I’ve never been fascinated with Dragons. Sure, they’re large and cool-looking and appreciate shiny objects like myself, but still, I’ve just never been attracted to storylines that focus on them. The synopsis for Talon didn’t really catch me; in fact, the only reason I gave Talon a shot is because I’m acquainted with Julie Kagawa’s work. She’s the writer of a couple series, including the Iron Fey — which you absolutely should checkout if you haven’t already. Although I still didn’t care much for dragons by the time Talon finished, I definitely got invested in the characters, especially Ember.
Ember and her brother Dante have lived a strict and sheltered life. They’re dragons who have the ability to shift their appearance into humans. They, like all members in the group Talon train themselves to seamlessly fit in with the human population. When this book begins Ember and Dante are being moved to sunny California where they stay with human guardians in order to carry on training and assimilating.
I LOVE fiery-tempered, sarcastic and literal butt-kicking heroines like Ember. Ember’s tired of following Talon’s rules which seem shadier as the book progresses. She longs to be free – free to hang out with her friends, free to love whoever she wants and free to fly in her true form. When Riley, another dragon, who because he has turned away from Talon is called a “rogue” shows up, Ember starts to question everything Talon’s ever told her.
This book is told in three points of views. Ember of course, Riley and another character, Garrett who we know straight off that bat is a member of the order of St. George. St. George is a centuries old group that focuses its efforts on eradicating dragons which they believe to be evil. Like Ember, Garrett starts to realize that things aren’t always what they seem. Garrett starts the book out in the same manner as Ember and Dante, by moving to California with his “cousin” Tristan to stakeout the area. St. George has been told that some sleeper dragons have been planted there (a.k.a. Ember and Dante) and Garrett and Tristan are charged with finding and removing the threat.
I really liked Ember’s character and not just because her types are typical favorites of mine, but because she had a great character arc. As the story progressed, she grew stronger and more confident and more open to what Riley had to say about Talon’s agenda. She was open to the truth and prepared to do what it took to protect herself and others.
Garrett had a similar arc as Ember, starting out hating and fearing dragons, only to eventually realize that maybe they aren’t all evil.
We still don’t know much about Riley by the end of Talon but since book two is called Rogue I’m guessing we’re going to get a lot more.
Even though I only gave this book three bolts, I’m definitely going to proceed with reading the rest of the series. Knowing Kagawa, I’m sure I will continue to like the following books, even if I never love them.
If you like a dash of danger and dragons in your YA – Talon might be right up your alley.