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Dragonshadow

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The author of Heartstone once again infuses elements of Jane Austen’s beloved novel with her own brand of magic in this addictive fantasy that brings back sparring lovers Aliza and Alastair: fierce warriors who match wits, charm, and swords as they fight an epic war to save their world. The Battle of North Fields is over—or so Aliza Bentaine, now a Daired, fervently wants t The author of Heartstone once again infuses elements of Jane Austen’s beloved novel with her own brand of magic in this addictive fantasy that brings back sparring lovers Aliza and Alastair: fierce warriors who match wits, charm, and swords as they fight an epic war to save their world. The Battle of North Fields is over—or so Aliza Bentaine, now a Daired, fervently wants to believe. But rumors are spreading of an unseen monster ravaging the isolated Castle Selwyn on the northern border of the kingdom. When she and Alastair are summoned from their honeymoon by the mysterious Lord Selwyn, they must travel with their dragon Akarra through the Tekari-infested Old Wilds of Arle to answer his call. And they are not alone on this treacherous journey. Shadowing the dragonriders is an ancient evil, a harbinger of a dark danger of which the Worm was only a foretaste. And soon Aliza realizes the terrible truth: the real war is only beginning.


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The author of Heartstone once again infuses elements of Jane Austen’s beloved novel with her own brand of magic in this addictive fantasy that brings back sparring lovers Aliza and Alastair: fierce warriors who match wits, charm, and swords as they fight an epic war to save their world. The Battle of North Fields is over—or so Aliza Bentaine, now a Daired, fervently wants t The author of Heartstone once again infuses elements of Jane Austen’s beloved novel with her own brand of magic in this addictive fantasy that brings back sparring lovers Aliza and Alastair: fierce warriors who match wits, charm, and swords as they fight an epic war to save their world. The Battle of North Fields is over—or so Aliza Bentaine, now a Daired, fervently wants to believe. But rumors are spreading of an unseen monster ravaging the isolated Castle Selwyn on the northern border of the kingdom. When she and Alastair are summoned from their honeymoon by the mysterious Lord Selwyn, they must travel with their dragon Akarra through the Tekari-infested Old Wilds of Arle to answer his call. And they are not alone on this treacherous journey. Shadowing the dragonriders is an ancient evil, a harbinger of a dark danger of which the Worm was only a foretaste. And soon Aliza realizes the terrible truth: the real war is only beginning.

30 review for Dragonshadow

  1. 5 out of 5

    Cindy ✩☽ Savage Queen ♔

    1/6/17 *Checks the Reader Q&A Section* Wait, this is a sequel to Heartstone? Wow, I did not expect a sequel. Well okay, I am down for more character development from Alastair and Aliza, the supporting cast and hopefully more dragons! --- Patiently waiting for this book to come out because I need more books about dragons in my life! So fingers crossed, this is an action-packed tale filled with dragons cause.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Mogsy (MMOGC)

    4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2018/11/19/... When I first learned of Dragonshadow, I admit I was taken a bit by surprise. I honestly hadn’t expected a sequel to Heartstone, mainly because the first book did such a good job of being a faithful retelling of Pride and Prejudice, albeit set in a high fantasy setting. Things ended well for our protagonists Aliza Bentaine and Alastair Daired, and I thought that was the end of that. But apparently, the author had more planne 4 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum https://bibliosanctum.com/2018/11/19/... When I first learned of Dragonshadow, I admit I was taken a bit by surprise. I honestly hadn’t expected a sequel to Heartstone, mainly because the first book did such a good job of being a faithful retelling of Pride and Prejudice, albeit set in a high fantasy setting. Things ended well for our protagonists Aliza Bentaine and Alastair Daired, and I thought that was the end of that. But apparently, the author had more planned for her characters, and I suppose in this world full of magic and extraordinary monsters, I should have anticipated the possibility of more stories. Dragonshadow picks up not long after the end of Heartstone, which saw the dragonriders prevail over the monstrous forces at the Battle of North Fields. Aliza and Alastair are now married, enjoying the final few days of their honeymoon when an unexpected visit from a messenger arriving from the Castle Selwyn forces them to return home early. It appears that an unknown monster has been terrorizing the rural countryside, killing other preternatural creatures for their precious hearts. But now a young serving girl has gone missing, and everyone fears that the monster must have taken her too. Reminded of the way her own little sister had been attacked and killed by a wild gryphon, Aliza’s heart immediately goes out to the people of Castle Selwyn, and she convinces Alastair to take the contract. Not content to remain at home, however, she also persuades him to let her come along. The journey will be long and arduous, taking them through dangerous territory infested with monsters, but Aliza knows in her heart this is something she must do, or else she will forever be left behind and shut out of the most important part of her husband’s life. As unexpected as this sequel was, I am happy that we got it. After the first book, I think many readers, myself included, were keen to know more about this world beyond the Jane Austen elements. I wouldn’t say the story was one of Heartstone’s strong points, mainly because Elle Katharine White was working under so many constraints in order to follow the original plot of Pride and Prejudice so closely, though she more than made up for it with her incredible world-building. Hence, the more I thought about it, Dragonshadow seemed like the perfect opportunity for the author to further spread her wings and explore her characters and develop her storytelling more fully. This moment, I’m pleased to say, was not wasted. With retellings you always run the risk of readers having preconceived notions of how your characters should think and act, using their familiarity with the original work as a template. However, Elle Katharine White immediately leapt to the task of making these characters her own. The attention is shifted to more serious matters, now that the honeymoon period is literally over. Every marriage comes with its own unique problems, and Aliza is trying to figure out her new role as a dragonrider’s wife, knowing she has certain traditions to uphold. However, she also has her own hopes and dreams for the future and is reluctant to let Alastair shoulder all his responsibilities without her, a thread of conflict that runs though much of this book. That said, their love for each other remains unshakeable, and romance still plays a prominent role in this book, only now it feels even deeper and more meaningful. I was also glad to see this sequel expand the world that so enchanted me in Heartstone. There was much less focus on dragons and their lore in this one, sad to say, but this also gave the author a chance to show off other aspects of the setting, because there is so much more to this series. The story is a mix of mystery and drama, as Aliza and Alastair come in contact with all sorts of amazing fantastical creatures in their quest to discover who or what it is responsible for all the killings, and why the two of them might have become targets themselves. White puts our couple through plenty of challenges and ordeals, both physical and emotional. It’s heartbreaking, but also rewarding in the end to watch the characters support and pull each other through hard times. If you liked Heartstone, I would highly recommend picking up Dragonshadow, especially if you enjoyed the general concept and wanted to see more. With this sequel, I felt the series has come into its own, moving beyond any restrictions a retelling would have placed on characters and plot. I felt that Elle Katharine White took full advantage of her new freedom to deeply explore Aliza and Alastair’s relationship, and fans of fantasy adventure and romance should find plenty to sink their teeth into with this one. Audiobook Review: I was fortunate enough to also receive a listening copy of Dragonshadow in audio, which I enjoyed just as much as the print version. I wasn’t familiar with Billie Fulford-Brown as a narrator, though she sounded very familiar and had a distinct elegance to her voice that I felt was perfectly suited for Aliza. She did a wonderful job and brought an extra layer of dynamism to the experience.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Alyssa

    NEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD. :O

  4. 5 out of 5

    laura (bookies & cookies)

    OMG I just found out about this sequel and I. AM. SO. HYPE.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Tammy

    I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The nitty-gritty: Another winning story in the Heartstone series, I was once again enchanted by White's lively storytelling and wonderful world-building elements. One of my favorite things about Heartstone , the first book in White's Pride & Prejudice fantasy retelling, was the world building. I'm a big P&P fan, but those elements ar I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The nitty-gritty: Another winning story in the Heartstone series, I was once again enchanted by White's lively storytelling and wonderful world-building elements. One of my favorite things about Heartstone , the first book in White's Pride & Prejudice fantasy retelling, was the world building. I'm a big P&P fan, but those elements are not what won me over the first time around. Although White did an admirable job integrating that classic story into her exciting tale of dragons, dragon riders and other mythical and supernatural creatures, there was definitely a feeling that the author had certain plot points she had to hit. This didn't ruin the story for me by any means, because I absolutely loved Heartstone , but it was the characters and White's unique world that kept me reading. Readers who haven't read the first book might be a little lost, so I'd recommend starting with Heartstone . You'll get lots of background on the characters and the world which will make this easier to understand. Even I had forgotten some of the events that took place, although it didn't take long to catch up. When the story opens, Aliza has married Alastair and is now Lady Daired. As the new mistress of House Pendragon, she’s just starting to get her feet wet, learning how to run a large household. She and Alastair are on the last days of their honeymoon, and neither one is anxious to end their relaxing break from the bloodshed that took place only months before, when Aliza helped slay the Greater Lindworm and saved her village. But a letter has arrived from Lord Selwyn asking for Alastair’s services as a Rider, as a monster of some sort appears to be stalking and killing creatures around the castle and stealing their heartstones as well. Not only that, but a young servant girl has gone missing, and Lord Selwyn fears the worst. Aliza encourages Alastair to take the job, and bucking the tradition of staying home while her Rider husband is off slaying monsters, she convinces him to take her along on the arduous journey to Castle Selwyn. But the journey turns out to be extremely dangerous as well, as at each stop along the way, Aliza, Alastair and Akarra encounter more and more dead bodies. It’s almost as if the monster is . . . following them. When they finally arrive at the castle, even more mysteries await. Lord Selwyn and his wife Cordelia are clearly hiding something, and a mysterious silver box that won’t open keeps appearing in Aliza’s luggage, even after she’s tried to ditch it. Something even more dangerous than the monster who is terrorizing the town is out there, and Alastair and Akarra need to stop it before anyone else dies. I enjoyed Heartstone a little more than Dragonshadow, I think because the plot was more straightforward. Dragonshadow meanders a bit in the first half, especially because a good chunk of the story takes place as our three main characters are traveling through the Widdermere to get to the castle. And although I loved the different places they stop along the way and the people they meet, they never stay long enough for the reader to really become invested in those new characters. Once they arrive at Castle Selwyn, however, everything comes to a head, as each mystery is solved and additional dangers come into play. This is also a darker story than the first one. In Heartstone, we had the romantic and mostly lighthearted Pride & Prejudice theme (well, until the end, that is). There is still romance this time around, but Aliza and Alastair are now married and facing different challenges. I loved that Aliza is still stubborn and insists on being part of her husband’s Rider life, even though he simply wants to keep her safe and out of any danger. Luckily, Aliza will have none of that, which is good because otherwise there wouldn’t be much of a story. When they arrive at Castle Selwyn, we get to meet a couple of my favorite characters. First is the seemingly hard-edged housekeeper, a woman named Madam Mòrag, who wastes no time in telling Aliza exactly what she thinks of a Rider’s wife following him into battle. But as the story progresses, we learn more about Mòrag and by the end, she really was one of my favorite characters. I also loved Selwyn’s wife Cordelia, an odd sort who immediately befriends Aliza and eventually lets her in on a BIG secret. Cordelia’s storyline was one of my favorites in the book, and I hope that this is not the last time we see her in this series. And of course, there is the fantastic world-building that once again captivated my imagination. I loved all the different creatures, some mythological and some purely imagined. In this book we get to meet the horribly dangerous valkyries, vulture-like creatures who attack from the sky; mermaids, who White has imbued with an alien-like other worldliness; selkies, from Scottish folklore; and the vicious direwolves who hunt in packs. Heartstones—the precious gems that hide inside each creature’s heart and can only be acquired when that creature is dead—play an important role in this story as well. Someone is after the heartstones that Aliza and Alastair wear around their necks, which is one of the mysteries that isn’t solved by the end of the story. Which brings us to the end. Some things are eventually resolved, but others are left open-ended and will hopefully be addressed in the next book. At least we know for sure that a third book is on the horizon, which makes me very happy. I’m anxious to find out the answers to all of my questions, and of course, I can’t wait to spend more time with these characters. Big thanks to the publisher for supplying a review copy. My review of HeartstoneThis review originally appeared on Books, Bones & Buffy

  6. 5 out of 5

    Angie

    Dragonshadow is the not the sequel I expected to Heartstone, a book I read mainly because it was a Pride and Prejudice adaptation. Although I thoroughly enjoyed Heartstone, I expected Dragonshadow to continue in the same vein as many P&P sequels- mainly romance and usually disappointing. Imagine my surprise and delight when Dragonshadow did not follow that path! In this installment (of what I hope is a fully fleshed out series), Alastair and Aliza are enjoying a few weeks of honeymoon after Dragonshadow is the not the sequel I expected to Heartstone, a book I read mainly because it was a Pride and Prejudice adaptation. Although I thoroughly enjoyed Heartstone, I expected Dragonshadow to continue in the same vein as many P&P sequels- mainly romance and usually disappointing. Imagine my surprise and delight when Dragonshadow did not follow that path! In this installment (of what I hope is a fully fleshed out series), Alastair and Aliza are enjoying a few weeks of honeymoon after the events of the Battle of North Fields. However, their honeymoon is cut short when a contract is brought to them from the north, where something is killing the Idar. Aliza, refusing to be left behind, joins Alastair and Akarra, the dragon, as they journey north to stop whatever is killing innocent creatures. This sequel expands the world of Riders in the fantasy world of Arle and continues to build toward a giant war in the future between the different creatures and humans. The writing is strong and I believe this is going to be an amazing series. I can't wait to read more! I received a copy of this novel from the publisher.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Amanda Thompson

    It's only one of my most anticipated reads this year! <3

  8. 4 out of 5

    mith

    P L E A S E give me anything this woman writes, oh my god.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Lynn Williams

    4.5 of 5 stars Dragonshadow is the second book in the Heartstone series by Elle Katharine White and I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed it. The first book was a retelling of Pride and Prejudice but with dragons and other fantastical beasts. It was a great start to the series and one that took me by surprise as retellings can be a little hit or miss especially when they’re using a favourite classic as inspiration. As it is Heartstone was a definite hit for me and so you can imagine how happy I was 4.5 of 5 stars Dragonshadow is the second book in the Heartstone series by Elle Katharine White and I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed it. The first book was a retelling of Pride and Prejudice but with dragons and other fantastical beasts. It was a great start to the series and one that took me by surprise as retellings can be a little hit or miss especially when they’re using a favourite classic as inspiration. As it is Heartstone was a definite hit for me and so you can imagine how happy I was when I caught a whiff of No.2. To be honest, I think I liked this book even more than the first although that hardly seems possible. Whereas the first book felt a little restricted by the Pride and Prejudice storyline and the author’s clear desire to stick to it as much as is possible in a fantasy setting, this book is able to ‘be itself’ to throw off any such restrictions and really come into its own. The world building was good in the first book but with this instalment we get to travel much further afield when Alastair takes on a job at a remote castle on the Northern Border. As the story begins Alastair and Aliza are enjoying a peaceful and romantic honeymoon when their time is interrupted by a rider from Castle Selwyn. It seems that the castle is being targeted for attack by an unknown monster – the latest is the disappearance of a young girl from the castle. Alastair accepts the job but it seems that Aliza has some decisions of her own to make. So, I love that the story has moved into its own territory now. Aliza and Alistair are married and this is unfamiliar ground for both of them. Alistair is a Rider, bonded to a dragon, Riders have a certain status and much like in Pride and Prejudice Aliza’s family is quite far removed in many people’s opinions. Of course Aliza and Alistair are at the pink tinted glasses stage – okay they’re in love – of their relationship but nonetheless they’re also both positioning themselves and trying to find their feet in terms of the future and this theme plays an important part in the story. Aliza isn’t ready to become Alistair’s housekeeper and stay behind every time he flies into danger, let’s face it, she played a rather pivotal role in the war in the previous book, but Alistair doesn’t want Aliza to face danger, he has a point, she isn’t trained to fight and it means his attention will be split. But, Aliza wins the battle to accompany Alistair on his most recent job. To be honest, they both need to find their feet and fast. On top of the character development there is plenty going on in the world. It seems that somebody is paying an inordinate amount of attention to heartstones and also there are stirrings in the wild. Things are roaming. I don’t really want to go into what’s really taking place but Alistair’s and Aliza’s travels across the Old Wilds of Arle are beset by attacks, almost like they’re being followed. Upon reaching the slightly eerie and ghost like Castle of Selwyn things escalate. Ghosts of the past seem to come knocking on their door. Things definitely take a creepy turn and the setting really helps to enhance that. Mists, cliffs, dark waters, a castle with underground tunnels and secret passageways. Lots of different creatures, centaurs and merpeople and so much more. I’m not going to go further into the plot but more discuss the things that really stood out for me. The expansion of the world and the people and fantastic creatures that dwell in it. This is so well done and I loved it. Aliza really is the main character and she plays an almost detective role here, asking questions and coming up with suggestions while Alistair is roaming the place looking for beasts. Aliza has really developed. She wants to learn, she wants to help but more than that she has a sympathetic nature which almost makes a bridge between the humans and the beasts. I think this is something that could really develop and I enjoyed this aspect of the story and in particular the connection that Aliza seems to forge with Akarra. Overall, I loved this. The plot is good, the character arcs are developing well and the world building has been strengthened. I can’t wait to read more. I received a copy through Edelweiss, courtesy of the publisher, for which my thanks. The above is my own opinion.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Shelley

    *Source* Publisher *Genre* Epic Fantasy *Rating* 4.0 *Thoughts* Dragonshadow, by author Elle Katharine White, is the second installment in the authors Heartstone series. If you haven't read the first book, Heartstone, I do suggest you do so. The author infuses elements of Jane Austen’s beloved novels with her own brand of magic that brings back sparring lovers Aliza and Alastair: fierce warriors who match wits, charm, and swords as they fight an epic war to save their world. Picking up several month *Source* Publisher *Genre* Epic Fantasy *Rating* 4.0 *Thoughts* Dragonshadow, by author Elle Katharine White, is the second installment in the authors Heartstone series. If you haven't read the first book, Heartstone, I do suggest you do so. The author infuses elements of Jane Austen’s beloved novels with her own brand of magic that brings back sparring lovers Aliza and Alastair: fierce warriors who match wits, charm, and swords as they fight an epic war to save their world. Picking up several months after the Battle of North Fields, and the War of the Worm ended, Aliza Bentaine nee Daired is on her honeymoon with Alastair Daired, Rider, House of Pendragon. *Full Review @ Gizmos Reviews* https://gizmosreviews.blogspot.com/20...

  11. 4 out of 5

    Hannah

    I didn't expect Heartstone to have a sequel.... I'M SO FREAKING EXCITED YA'LL

  12. 5 out of 5

    Maggie Boyd

    Dragonshadow is the sequel to last year’s popular Pride and Prejudice inspired fantasy romance novel, Heartstone. Picking up shortly after the end of Heartstone, Dragonshadow offers a deeper look at the magical kingdom of Arle and their dangerous enemies: the vicious Tekari and the mysterious Els. I think this book would be confusing without the world and relationship building provided in the first novel and so recommend readers start there. Aliza and Alistair have enjoyed only a few precious wee Dragonshadow is the sequel to last year’s popular Pride and Prejudice inspired fantasy romance novel, Heartstone. Picking up shortly after the end of Heartstone, Dragonshadow offers a deeper look at the magical kingdom of Arle and their dangerous enemies: the vicious Tekari and the mysterious Els. I think this book would be confusing without the world and relationship building provided in the first novel and so recommend readers start there. Aliza and Alistair have enjoyed only a few precious weeks of honeymoon when the messenger comes. Things are dire at Castle Selwyn and they need Alistair and his dragon companion Akara to come help deal with some dead Idar (magical creatures who are indifferent allies to humans) and a missing girl. Since it would take more than an ordinary human to kill Idar, it is important that a member of the dragon corps take on the issue. Aliza understands perfectly that this is the nature of Alistair’s job; he is expected to spend his time protecting the realm from magical enemies. She is, however, determined not to let him travel alone. He is equally determined that she remain behind. Aliza herself is not a fighter; Alistair’s battle with the Greater Lindworm, which took place in the last book, has left him weaker as a warrior and those two factors combined will make it dangerous for them to travel together. Aliza won’t be able to defend herself, and protecting her will distract Alistair from his primary mission. Also, the journey to Selwyn will involve crossing the Old Wilds, a place where even he and Akara will be outmatched by dangerous, magical creatures, and it’s not the kind of trip upon which one takes their lady wife. Alistair is firm in his refusal to allow her to accompany him. Two unexpected allies aid Aliza in getting her way, but once travel has begun, she finds herself questioning her own wisdom. She feels nauseous while flying on Akara’s back, isn’t used to living quite this rough, and her first experience in a fight goes very badly. Then she meets the ghastradi, a human possessed by a kind of powerful, magical spirit. The evil ghoul has foul plans for her and it is only the intervention of an unanticipated friend that saves her. The encounter leaves her determined to do all she can to rid the people of Arle of the horrors that plague them and most especially, to watch Alistair’s back in the war the ghastradi claimed was coming. See the rest of my review at https://allaboutromance.com/book-revi...

  13. 4 out of 5

    Amy A

    4.5 Originally posted at Vampire Book Club After the defeat of the Greater Lindworm during The Battle of North Fields, Aliza Bentaine, now Daired, and Alastair are enjoying their honeymoon, and settling into married life, of which Aliza is not finding an easy transition. It’s all too soon before Alastair and his dragon, Akarra, are called away to hunt down an unknown evil plaguing Castle Selwyn in the northern border of Arle that seems to be specifically targeting Idar—creatures indifferent to hum 4.5 Originally posted at Vampire Book Club After the defeat of the Greater Lindworm during The Battle of North Fields, Aliza Bentaine, now Daired, and Alastair are enjoying their honeymoon, and settling into married life, of which Aliza is not finding an easy transition. It’s all too soon before Alastair and his dragon, Akarra, are called away to hunt down an unknown evil plaguing Castle Selwyn in the northern border of Arle that seems to be specifically targeting Idar—creatures indifferent to humans (i.e. not enemy and not friend) such as trolls, centaurs, and merfolk. Not one to be left behind, Aliza accompanies Alastair and Akarra. The journey to Castle Selwyn proves to be difficult for the trio leading them to believe that something may be following them in the shadows. This is further exacerbated when they arrive at the castle and discover more is going on than meets the eye. It’s possible evil hasn’t been defeated after all. Right away I was very satisfied with how Dragonshadow moved the story out of the constraints of its Pride and Prejudice roots. Don’t get me wrong I loved the unique retelling of the classic, but I also felt like it kept that storyline in Heartstone following a preset path in order to fulfill the retelling aspect. Dragonshadow expands upon the world, characters, and fascinating creatures that I loved so much from the first book and is does it in such a way that sets up truly exciting things to come. Dragonshadow does such a great job of highlighting the whole “what comes next” after the seemingly Happily Ever After. It’s not something we see too often. Typically, once our characters reach that point, it’s the end. I found myself missing characters from Heartstone, mainly Aliza’s family and all the creatures residing in Hart’s Run. It’s clear that this puts the readers into Aliza’s mindset as well because she’s struggling with understanding her place within House Pendragon. Despite being instrumental in the defeat of the Lindworm, Aliza is still looked upon as a nakla, a non-warrior, as well as trying to live up to the expectations of being a Daired and all the history surrounding the name. It’s not just Aliza. Alastair, too, is dealing with the after effects of the battle; feeling as though he’s less-than he used to be, and not knowing how to adjust to accommodate his new family. All the while the hunt for the supposed Tekari responsible for the deaths of the Idar opens a whole unforeseen set of problems that are so much worse than the worm. I thought that Elle Katharine White did a great job of connecting the shadows of evil on the horizon with the initial conflict in Heartstone. There’s a secondary conflict which confuses itself with the bigger threat for a bit and there are definite places where it feels a bit too congested, but I loved the showcasing of all the new and different supernaturals, and how much the world of Arle is expanded. Dragonshadow really pushes the series into a new and very interesting direction, exploring new territories. Aliza and Alastair’s fight is not over by any means, and however threatening this unknown evil becomes I know they’ll face it together.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Online Eccentric Librarian

    More reviews (and no fluff) on the blog http://surrealtalvi.wordpress.com/ While I found the first book in the series to be just 'ok', I felt Dragonshadow brought the series into its own, and without the limiting constraints of Austen really improved. It's not am amazing series but it is solidly written and very accessible to those who never liked fantasy or sci fi. Author White greatly expands on her world and brings in new creatures and lore while also further developing the leads. It makes f More reviews (and no fluff) on the blog http://surrealtalvi.wordpress.com/ While I found the first book in the series to be just 'ok', I felt Dragonshadow brought the series into its own, and without the limiting constraints of Austen really improved. It's not am amazing series but it is solidly written and very accessible to those who never liked fantasy or sci fi. Author White greatly expands on her world and brings in new creatures and lore while also further developing the leads. It makes for a pleasant read and proof that stories don't have to stop after the 'happily ever after' ending. Story: Aliza and Alistair are enjoying a well-deserved honeymoon when duty calls the Daireds once again. A plea from a Northern kingdom brings a story of something evil causing deaths to the humans and the non humans. To reach the North, Aliza and Alistair will have to brave the Wilds and the predatory non-humans that live there. As well, Aliza will have to convince Alistair that, although she is not a dragon rider, her determination and will can make up for any lacks. The first part of the book is the journey: Aliza finding a way to convince her husband that she should be with him, learning to ride Alistair's dragon, Akarra, and then arriving at the lake and castle. Once there, there are several mysteries to solve: disappearance of a serving girl, death of several non humans, and something very evil that is sensed to be following Aliza and Alistair. The book has plenty of action scenes as well as some nice interactions between the main characters. The Northern "Scottish"-like setting is well used and the lore there interesting (selkies, centaurs, etc.). The course of Aliza and Alistair unraveling the mysteries and finding the clues was very satisfying. In all, I enjoyed this book much better than the first. I look forward to the next in the series. Reviewed from an advance reader copy provided by the publisher.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Debbie

    "Dragonshadow" is a heroic fantasy novel with a bit of mystery. It is the second book in the series. It spoils events from the first book (though not in detail), so I'd recommend reading them in order. You don't have to read the previous book to understand this one. Aliza is a healer and has no training as a warrior. She fights with her wits, but she's married to a warrior with a dragon. He views her as helpless and doesn't want her in danger, but she wants to be seen as a useful partner. They ta "Dragonshadow" is a heroic fantasy novel with a bit of mystery. It is the second book in the series. It spoils events from the first book (though not in detail), so I'd recommend reading them in order. You don't have to read the previous book to understand this one. Aliza is a healer and has no training as a warrior. She fights with her wits, but she's married to a warrior with a dragon. He views her as helpless and doesn't want her in danger, but she wants to be seen as a useful partner. They take a contract to stop an unknown monster that has been killing the creatures--and now a human--near a castle. On the way to the castle, they're attacked by organized groups of humans and monsters. Once at the castle, Aliza asked questions to discover what was going on while her husband patrolled the castle. I liked that Aliza was able to protect herself using her quick thinking and was vital to solving the mystery. While her husband fought bravely, he had an injury from a previous battle that made him less effective, thus providing more suspense. The characters acted realistically, and I cared about what happened to them. They battled their doubts as much as the physical monsters. There was enough world building to make a unique environment with out becoming bogged down in the details. There were no sex scenes. There was only a few uses of bad language. Overall, I'd recommend this enjoyable, exciting fantasy. I received an ebook review copy of this book from the publisher through Edelweiss.

  16. 5 out of 5

    InkFire

    To say my hopes weren't high is probably true, but I didn't have to wait so long that my excitement from the first book had burned off before I read this one. I hoped for a book that showed me more of the characters I loved, and I got precisely that. It's not just paradise once you're married to Dragonrider Darcy, and their worldviews are different enough that I had an inkling there would be trouble. And I was right. I cannot tell you how happy I was with this book. Like... I could barely concen To say my hopes weren't high is probably true, but I didn't have to wait so long that my excitement from the first book had burned off before I read this one. I hoped for a book that showed me more of the characters I loved, and I got precisely that. It's not just paradise once you're married to Dragonrider Darcy, and their worldviews are different enough that I had an inkling there would be trouble. And I was right. I cannot tell you how happy I was with this book. Like... I could barely concentrate on anything else while I was reading this book. If there was one section I didn't appreciate as much as I might have - it was how long it took the characters to ask the right questions. I actually found myself shouting at the book, asking how none of them were investigating who was supposed to be lighting the lamp when the girl died. Or even better - this trend of the main character having essential information that she's not sharing because she's... I guess afraid of what others will think? It's perfectly reasonable, really, and completely in-character, but it was extremely frustrating that it took 3 separate occurrences of seeing/hearing a dead man before she said anything about it, and by then it was too late, because he'd already killed again. Oh, and an IMPORTANT NOTE: this book deals with intense themes of grief and loss and insufficiency, as well as the tragedy of (view spoiler)[suffering a miscarriage, (hide spoiler)] which is something I think readers should be warned of. If that's a loss you've suffered personally, that portion of the book might be a very hard read.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Silver James

    I received a print copy of this book from the publisher. While that was exciting, I find it easier to listen to books these days--blasted eyesight. After a re-listen to Billie Fulford-Brown's superb narration of the first book in this series, I happily spent an Audible credit to get the audio verision of this tale. This book begins shortly after the events portrayed in the first story. Aliza and Alistair have married and are enjoying their honeymoon when a variety of things occur--a mysterious w I received a print copy of this book from the publisher. While that was exciting, I find it easier to listen to books these days--blasted eyesight. After a re-listen to Billie Fulford-Brown's superb narration of the first book in this series, I happily spent an Audible credit to get the audio verision of this tale. This book begins shortly after the events portrayed in the first story. Aliza and Alistair have married and are enjoying their honeymoon when a variety of things occur--a mysterious wedding present and the arrival of an exhausted young man on their doorstep with a contract for Alistair and his dragon, Akarra. Among other things. Aliza insists on going to the far--and frigid--northlands with him. The adventure continues as they battle shadows, evil, get some things right, have some sad events, and discover.... Ah, no. That would be revealing the end and this is a fantasy series so... Grab the first book if you haven't already. Read it. Then read and enjoy this one.

  18. 4 out of 5

    William Bentrim

    Dragon Shadow By Elle Katharine White This is the second book of the Heartstone Series. Heartstone was the first book of the series and it was great. Aliza and Alastair Daired are the protagonists and now a married couple. They accept a contract to rid the Lake Meera area of an unknown monster. Akarra, Alastair’s dragon did not have a major role in this book, much to my disappointment. White tackles some marital issues that are not normally addressed in a fantasy novel. She does it tastefully and Dragon Shadow By Elle Katharine White This is the second book of the Heartstone Series. Heartstone was the first book of the series and it was great. Aliza and Alastair Daired are the protagonists and now a married couple. They accept a contract to rid the Lake Meera area of an unknown monster. Akarra, Alastair’s dragon did not have a major role in this book, much to my disappointment. White tackles some marital issues that are not normally addressed in a fantasy novel. She does it tastefully and points out that tragedy can be over come. Her story is populated, once again, by fantastic creatures some of whom are even likeable. White address love and its nuances quite well. Some good lessons can be learned. I enjoyed the book.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Joe Crowe

    Pride and Prejudice and Monsters. That's not the name of this book, but that description is all over the press release. Author Elle Katherine White used the Jane Austen characters as inspiration in the first book of this series, Heartstone. Now the second book, well, she continues doing that. She captures the tone and style of Austen while adding neat fantasy-epic stuff. It also has the most honest, truthful cover blurb I have ever seen: "No one said marriage to a dragon rider would be easy." It Pride and Prejudice and Monsters. That's not the name of this book, but that description is all over the press release. Author Elle Katherine White used the Jane Austen characters as inspiration in the first book of this series, Heartstone. Now the second book, well, she continues doing that. She captures the tone and style of Austen while adding neat fantasy-epic stuff. It also has the most honest, truthful cover blurb I have ever seen: "No one said marriage to a dragon rider would be easy." It's a wild adventure inspired by Austen, not a parody such as Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. As such, it's just fun. You'll need to read this right away. Have you started yet?

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jessie

    3.5 stars, I thought the first book stayed relatively true to Jane Austen’s pride and prejudice and enjoyed the fantasy version of it. Unfortunately I bought the second book with that expectation in mind. While it was not a bad read, the second book was not as enjoyable as the first book and it certainly didn’t leave me feeling like I was a part of the world. Most times with a good fantasy series, I find myself lost in the story and world building process and can barely tear myself away from the 3.5 stars, I thought the first book stayed relatively true to Jane Austen’s pride and prejudice and enjoyed the fantasy version of it. Unfortunately I bought the second book with that expectation in mind. While it was not a bad read, the second book was not as enjoyable as the first book and it certainly didn’t leave me feeling like I was a part of the world. Most times with a good fantasy series, I find myself lost in the story and world building process and can barely tear myself away from the book and eagerly anticipate the next book in the series like a rabid mad dog... this book just left me with a lukewarm feel. I didn’t hate it but I didn’t love it either.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Tim Deckert

    Writing a successful sequel is a difficult feat, particularly for young authors. Fortunately, Ms. White delivers on the promise she showed in Heartstone. And then some. Dragonshadow continues the story of Aliza and Alastair as newlyweds, continuing to face the monsters that occupy Arle. I'm not a spoiler guy, so suffice it to say that Dragonshadow is a well-written page-turner. A very worth sequel!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Crystal Nuhfer

    I usually find that sequels don't live up to my expectations especially when I really liked the original - and I LOVED Heartstone. That being said, this book was fantastic!!!!!! I think I would even go so far as to say that I liked it even better than the original. If you haven't read Heartstone, go read it now so you can come back and read Dragonshadow. And then stay tuned for #3!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Nicollette Winiewicz

    I really loved the first book and had high hopes for this one! I was not disappointed! Seeing how Aliza and Alastair adjust to married life was interesting to say the least! Can't wait for the next one!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Jules

    2.5/3

  25. 4 out of 5

    Louisa

    Man, this was a fantastic sequel, so much happened, it was so great to read! Loved the developments in the world, and I can't wait for the next book!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Valentina

    2.5 stars

  27. 5 out of 5

    soapturtle

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sopwee

  29. 4 out of 5

    Wizkecil

  30. 5 out of 5

    Danielle

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