Author: Mercedes Lackey
Series: Five Hundred Kingdoms #2
Blurb: When a dragon storms the castle, what should a (virgin) princess do? Why, turn to her studies, of course! But nothing practical-minded Princess Andromeda of Acadia finds gives a definitive solution. The only Traditional answer, though, is soothing the marauding dragon by a virgin sacrifice. Things are going fairly smoothly with the lottery–except for the women chosen, of course–until Princess Andromeda herself is picked!
But facing down the dragon doesn’t go quite as planned, and now, with the help of her Champion, Sir George, Andromeda searches for the dragon’s lair. But even–“especially”–in the Five Hundred Kingdoms, bucking Tradition isn’t easy. It takes the strongest of wills, knowledge, quick wits and a refusal to give up, no matter what happens along the way….
I love Mercedes Lackey. There’s something about her writing that is very relaxing to me. I particularly love this series because it combines several things which I enjoy: new twists on old stories, fairy tales, and good story telling. I reviewed the first book in this series, The Fairy Godmother, in this post.
I’m not sure which fairy tale this book is retelling, but anything that has a dragon that steals away fair maidens is fair game. What really sells this book is the characters. Princess Andromeda (or Andie, as she is called) is a bookish girl who only wants to find a way to prove herself. She isn’t comfortable with the spot light. Let’s just say I identify with her. A lot. The champion, St. George, first seems a bit boring, but is hiding a very important and surprising secret. And I haven’t even gotten to the dragons yet. Yes. Dragons. There are more than one. And they are awesome.
I really do love The Tradition, a magical force that tries to push people into set storylines. It is almost a character in its own right. There are many ways that characters try to manipulate their circumstances in order to manipulate The Tradition, with varying levels of success. It’s a pretty creative plot device.
This is working towards finishing another series from years past, so that’s a good thing. I can’t wait to see what the next book has in store!
GoodReads Rating: 3 out of 5 stars