The Fire Eternal (Last Dragon Chronicles #9) by Chris D’Lacey

Title: The Fire Eternal
Author: Chris D’Lacey
Publisher: Orchard Books
Release Date: 2007
Other Titles in Series: The Fire Within (#1), Icefire (#2), Fire Star (#3), Dark Fire (#5), Fire World (#6)

Rating:
Characters: 19/20
Plot: 20/20
Originality: 20/20
Writing: 20/20
Recommendation: 20/20
Overall: 99/100 or A+
Source: I own this book

Synopsis: Five years have passed since the mysterious disappearance of cult author, David Rain in the Arctic. Now, a number of strange events have come to pass – the Arctic ice is melting, polar bears are starving and the ghosts of Inuit souls haunt the skies. As the weather grows wilder and the icecaps melt, all eyes turn from the north to David’s daughter, Alexa. She may be the key to stopping it, but can one girl save the world from the forces of evil?

Review: The Fire Eternal is the fourth installment of the Last Dragon Chronicles. It takes place five years after the events of the previous book, Fire Star, where the protagonist David Rain mysteriously disappears. Now completely enthralled with the series, Chris D’Lacey’s way with words still manages to awe me. With each new addition the series progressively evolves, both in plot and in writing talent.

As with the previous installment, the fain play a major role in the story’s course of events. I am still befuddled by these mysterious beings, yet my veneration for them eclipses my confusion. I hope to someday understand just a tiny percent of the ideas that run through D’Lacey’s head. It would be both intriguing and mind-boggling.

Overall, The Fire Eternal comprises the best of the series (so far). Any dragon fanatic or lover of the Last Dragon Chronicles will not be disappointed. For those who are just beginning the series, I hope you look forward to book 4, as it is quite phenomenal. The steady evolution of the series should not be lost on you. It’s one of the major parts of reading it that I enjoyed.

http://www.thelastdragonchronicles.com/

D’Lacey, Chris. (2007) The Fire Eternal. United States: Orchard Books.

Fire Star (Last Dragon Chronicles #3) by Chris D’Lacey

Title: Fire Star
Author: Chris D’Lacey
Publisher: Orchard Books
Release Date: 2005
Other Titles in Series: The Fire Within (#1), Icefire (#2), The Fire Eternal (#4), Dark Fire (#5), Fire World (#6)

Rating:
Characters: 20/20
Plot: 20/20
Originality: 20/20
Writing: 19/20
Recommendation: 20/20
Overall: 99/100
Source: I own this book

Synopsis: A research trip to the Arctic and a contract for a new book – life can’t get much better for David Rain. But as soon as David finds himself in the icy climes, he begins to write his legend of bears, dragons, and the mysterious fire star. Soon he realizes that his tale is beginning to mirror real life, and that an old enemy is on her way to meet him. Can David thwart her terrible plan? Or will his world be destroyed forever?


My Thoughts: Fire Star is the third installment of the Last Dragon Chronicles, and the plot is finally beginning to heat up. Much of the setting takes place in the arctic, where serious events are beginning to escalate. Now three books into the story, I am devouring Chris D’Lacey’s writing with a passion. I am now very familiar with his writing style; the way he incorporates vast, complicated, and fascinating ideas into a a simple script that anyone could read with ease. I am in awe. 😉

In this fascinating book, Chris describes a race of beings that reside on a different vibrational frequency than humans. They exist in the realm of Dark Matter, where thoughts are substance. They are called Fain. The Fain have mastered inter-dimensional travel and often visit us humans, influencing our thoughts and overall aiding us in achieving spiritual enlightenment. This is a thought-provoking idea. . .

The concept of a fire star (a portal from the world of fain & dragons to Earth) is extremely exciting.  It carries the same vibes as a mass revolution, shift of global consciousness, or any other momentous event. Throughout the novel, any reader will realize that tensions are beginning to increase. You can tell something high-scale is coming. When the climax finally comes to pass, readers will not be disappointed. 

http://www.thelastdragonchronicles.com/

D’Lacey, Chris. (2005) Fire Star. United States: Orchard Books.

Icefire (Last Dragon Chronicles #2) by Chris D’Lacey

Title: Icefire
Author: Chris D’Lacey
Publisher: Orchard Books
Release Date: 2003
Other Titles in Series: The Fire Within (#1), Fire Star (#3), The Fire Eternal (#4), Dark Fire (#5), Fire World (#6)

Rating:
Characters: 20/20
Plot: 19/20
Originality: 20/20
Writing: 19/20
Recommendation: 20/20
Overall: 98/100 or A+
Source: I own this book

Synopsis: In the exciting sequel to The Fire Within, David must uncover the truth behind the mysterious clay dragons. David’s quest is to discover the link between the fire of the last known dragon on earth and the icy regions of the Arctic, It’s a journey that will bring him to the very heart of the legend of dragons and the mysterious, ancient secret of the icefire. . . .

Review: The stunning ingenuity of Chris D’Lacy expresses itself once again in the second installment of the Last Dragon Chronicles. In this continuation of the plot, David finally discovers the secrets of the Pennykettle Dragons, along with the uncovering of a link between polar bears and and dragons of ancient times. Icefire is indeed a step up on the maturity level compared to The Fire Within, yet the childish innocence of the first book manages to carry over as well. 

One aspect of the book that really impacted me was the description of “auma” or someones inner fire. Auma can be compared to the breath of God, or universal consciousness. It is the animating force of the Pennykettle Dragons, and it is a major part of the plot. I’m guessing (but not entirely for sure) that “auma” is the author’s personalization of the Hindu and Buddhist “Aum” or “Om.” It is often referred to as the sound of the Earth… Creation… The heart of existence. This idea is very inspiring. 😉

All in all, Icefire is definitely a good read. If you enjoyed The Fire Within, you will be satisfied by it’s sequel. I will give some warning though, this book seems to open the door to the more cosmic aspects of the series, which may be confusing to some. I am looking forward to reviewing the later books in the series, including the recently released Fire World. Until then, read on! 😉

http://www.thelastdragonchronicles.com/

D’Lacey, Chris. (2003) Icefire. United States: Orchard Books. 

The Fire Within (Last Dragon Chronicles #1) by Chris D’Lacey

Title: The Fire Within
Author: Chris D’Lacey
Genre: Adventure/Fantasy
Publisher: Orchard Books
Release Date: 2001
Other Titles in Series: Icefire (#2), Fire Star (#3), The Fire Eternal (#4), Dark Fire (#5), Fire World (#6)

Rating:
Characters: 20/20
Plot: 18/20
Originality: 20/20
Writing: 19/20
Recommendation: 20/20
Overall: 97/100 or A
Source: I own this lovely book 😉

Synopsis: When David moves in with Elizabeth Pennykettle and her eleven-year-old daughter, Lucy, he discovers a collection of clay dragons that come to life. David’s own special dragon inspires him to write a story, which reveals the secrets behind a mystery. In order to solve the mystery and save his dragon, David must master the magic of the fire within–not only with his hands but also with his heart.

Review: The Fire Within is one of those books that might not seem very special, or as if it would be a worthwhile read, yet is actually a story that will touch the hearts of all who decide to open its cover. In my opinion, the writing style of this first installment is most suitable for someone of a younger age than my own, yet the themes expressed have the ability to capture anyone’s interest. This easy read is a favorite of mine and will always remain so.

Throughout the entirety of the novel, a prevalent theme becomes evident; We all have a fire within us, and it is called creativity. This message is expressed in every essence of The Fire Within. The protagonist, David Rain, finds his fire within while discovering inspiration. David manages this only with the help of his special dragon, Gadzooks who often writes ideas down on the notepad he was kilned with. David receives inspiring ideas from Gadzooks only in his imagination. Or does he?

Again, this seemingly trivial read is actually a book I wish all of humanity had the chance of reading. The thought-provoking themes the author provides will undoubtedly effect the current generation of readers. I am quite fond of The Fire Within and the rest of the Last Dragon Chronicles as well, which I hope to be reviewing in the near future. Truly, Chris D’Lacey has constructed a beautiful, touching, and adventurous novel that will kindle the fire within each and every one of his fans, including me. 😉   

http://www.thelastdragonchronicles.com/

D’Lacey, Chris. (2001) The Fire Within. United States: Orchard Books.

The Light (Morpheus Road #1) by D.J. MacHale

Title: The Light
Author: D.J. MacHale
Genre: Young Adult/Psychological Horror 
Publisher: Aladdin
Release Date: April 20, 2010
Other Titles in Series: The
Black

Rating:
Characters: 18/20
Plot: 20/20
Originality: 19/20
Writing: 19/20
Recommendation: 19/20
Overall: 95/100 or A
Source: Library

Synopsis: Marshall Seaver is being haunted. It begins with mysterious sounds, a fleeting face outside the window, a rogue breeze-all things that can be explained away. That is, until he comes face-to-face with a character who only exists on the pages of a sketchbook–a character Marshall himself created.

Marshall has no idea whi he is being tormented by this forbidding creature, but he is quickly convinced it has something to do with his best friend, Cooper, who has gone missing. Together wih Cooper’s beautiful but aloof sister, Sydney, Marshall searches for the truth about his friend while ultimately uncovering a nightmare that is bigger and more frightening than he could ever have imagined.

Review: D.J. MacHale has been one of my favorite authors ever since I feasted upon the Pendragon Series. His writing style is immensely captivating, keeping you on the edge of your seat throughout the entire book. This was the first horror I have read in a long time, and I must say MacHale seems to have a knack for the genre. I was surprisingly and utterly enthralled.

D.J. MacHale definitely incorporates his ingenuity in all literature he has a hand in. His most recent project, The Morpheus Road Trilogy, is… unique to say the least. It was unlike anything I usually read, a true psychological horror with paranormal aspects. I have no regrets upon reading it though, I actually enjoyed it quite well. The characters were solid, the plot was intricate, and originality was rampant.    

For YA readers, The Light is assuredly a novel worth checking out. I found myself shocked, chilled, and in some cases disturbed while reading. If you are looking for a thrill ride that will surprise you multiple times, than the first installment of Morpheus Road will undoubtedly satisfy you. A hunger for horror and paranormal goodness will quickly be satisfied upon opening the cover. I am looking forward to read and review the next in the series, The Black. The prospect of continuing to indulge upon the story of Marshall Seaver is exciting.

http://djmachalebooks.com/

MacHale, D.J. (2010) The Light. United States: Alladin

Brisingr (Inheritance Cycle #3) by Christopher Paolini

Title: Brisingr
Author: Christopher Paolini
Genre: YA Fantasy
Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf
Release Date: September 20th 2008
Other Titles in Series: Eragon (#1), Eldest (#2), Inheritance (#4 to be released)

Rating:
Characters: 20/20
Plot: 20/20
Originality: 20/20
Writing: 20/20
Recommendation: 20/20
Overall: 100/100 or A+
Source: Borrowed from Friend

Synopsis: Oaths sworn. . . Loyalties tested. . . Forces collide. It’s been only months since Eragon first uttered “brisingr,” an ancient language term for fire. Since then, he’s not only learned to create magic with words–he’s been challenged to his very core. Following the colossal battle against the Empire’s warriors on the Burning Plains, Eragon and his dragon, Saphira, have narrowly escaped with their lives. Still, there is more adventure at hand for the Rider and his dragon, as Eragon finds himself bound by a tangle of promises he may not be able to keep.


First is Eragon’s oath to his cousin, Roran: to help rescue Roran’s beloved from King Galbatorix’s clutches. But Eragon owes his loyalty to others, too. The Varden are in desperate need of his talents and strength–as are the elves and dwarves. When unrest claims the rebels and danger strikes from every corner, Eragon must make choices–choices that will take him across the Empire and beyond, choices that may lead to unimagined sacrifice. 


Eragon is the greatest hope to rid the land of tyranny. Can this once simple farm boy unite the rebel forces and defeat the king?

Review: Wow… I am at a loss for words, which rarely happens. I must express my deep gratification toward Mr. Paolini for reviving an emotion inside of me that I have not felt since many books ago… As my first ever perfectly rated book (100/100 points) I deem it appropriate to say this read was totally awesome!!! Although this is unusually immature for me, it is undoubtedly my true reaction. Brisingr brought out the best of enjoyment inside of me. A literal tingling pervaded my entire body as I read, especially toward the end of this phenomenal book.

Once again, Christopher Paolini proves his indubitable talent for comprising a brilliant plot. I could compare his skill and craft to chocolate making, the perfect combination of essential ingredients that leads to an amazing finished product. Paolini is a true master when it comes to implementing characters into a plot, finding the environment that suits them the best. When it comes to the setting of the story itself, his ingenuity is unmatched. An entire world, the plot of Brisingr is built upon, a world of ceaselessly discovered detail. Simply spectacular.

For those who eagerly await the next installment of The Inheritance Cycle, Inheritance, I feel your apprehension. How could anything rival the splendor of Brisingr? I have no doubt Christopher Paolini’s fourth and final book of the series will be the best by far. He has done it before with the earlier installments, and he can do it again. Join me in waiting as the closure of the Inheritance Cycle draws ever nearer. Join me, as the story of Eragon and Saphira finally ends. 37 days and counting. . . 

http://www.alagaesia.com/

Paolini, Christopher. (2008) Brisingr. United States: Alfred A. Knopf.         

Silver and Stone (The Bloodlines Series #1) by J.D. Thompson

Title: Silver and Stone
Author: J.D. Thompson
Genre: YA Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Self-Published
Release Date: August 3rd, 2001
Other Titles in Series: Blood and Champagne (to be released)

Rating:
Characters: 17/20
Plot: 17/20
Originality: 18/20
Writing: 18/20
Recommendation: 18/20
Overall: 88/100 or B+
Source: Review copy provided by author

Synopsis: Welcome to high school high society hell, where last season’s slingbacks can warrant a lunch table demotion, the wrong date will knock you off the it-list and behind every pair of oversized Chanel sunglasses lies a secret people are dying to keep.

As if senior year at Weatherford Preparatory School wasn’t hard enough, sixteen year old Alexis Bardolph had to add school outcast to the curriculum.

A new found notoriety following a family scandal, her lacrosse star boy-friend dumping her for a former BFF and a string of perpetually bad hair days were among the many things going wrong in her already turbulent teenage life.

But when the haunting nightmares that have plagued her since childhood begin to take an eerily tangible form and several Holler Creek residents are reported missing, Alexis can’t help but wonder if there isn’t more to her hellish dreams than meets the eye.

The unexpected arrival of a mysterious and dangerously handsome new student ultimately leads Alexis to troubling truths that not even her wildest imagination could have conjured.

Review: I was greatly excited when J.D. Thompson requested I review her newly released YA. Paranormal romance is not a genre I generally read, but it was enjoyable nonetheless. Silver and Stone is an absolute fun book to read, worthy of being praised alongside the best of young-adult fiction. I finished it in less than a day, and surprisingly found it to my liking. The flow of the plot from one moment to the next was superb, and the chapters were divided excellently. You would be hard-pressed to experience boredom while enveloping yourself in this fascinating story.

Of course, without in-depth characters a plot would get nowhere. Luckily, J.D. Thompson’s novel seems to be in plentiful abundance of such personae. She cleverly works strands of dialogue to bring the most out of her characters and is most adept at describing the emotions they feel while interacting with their environment. Thompson is definitely an author that knows what she’s doing.

Overall, I recommend the beginning of The Bloodlines series to the majority of paranormal romance lovers. This spectacular debut is dark, shocking, and provokingly hot!

http://jdthompson.blog.com/

Thompson, J.D. (2011) Silver and Stone.     

The Sorceress: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott

Title: The Sorceress
Author: Michael Scott
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: May 26, 2009
Other Titles in Series: The Alchemist (#1), The Magician (#2), The Necromancer (#4), The Warlock (#5)

Rating:
Characters: 18/20
Plot: 18/20
Originality: 18/20
Writing: 18/20
Recommendation: 19/20
Overall: 91/100 or A-
Source: Library

Synopsis: Paris: Dr John Dee has torn the city apart in every attempt to intercept the immortal Nicholas Flamel ans Sophie and Josh Newman. Paris’s streets are in ruins, Notre Dame destroyed, the Comte de Saint-Germain’s home leveled. Dee has the book of Abraham the Mage, but he’s still missing the two pages the Dark Elders need for the Final Summoning. Without them the spell cannot be cast, and Dee is well aware that the Dark Elders will not rest until they are in power and the human race is destroyed–or he is.

London: Nicholas Flamel’s heart almost broke as he watched his beloved Paris crumble before him. The city was demolished by Dee and Machiavelli, but Flamel played his own role in the destruction. Sophie and Josh Newman show every sign of being the twins of legend, and Flamel had to protect them and the pages from the Dark Elders.
But Nicholas grows weaker with each passing day. Perenelle is still trapped on Alcatraz, and now that Scatty has gone missing, the group is without protection. Except for Clarent–the twin sword of Excalibur. But Clarent’s power is unthinkable, its evil making it nearly impossible to use without its darkness seeping into the soul of whoever wields it.
If he hopes to defeat Dee, Nicholas must find someone who can teach Josh and Sophie the third elemental magic–Water Magic. The problem? The only being who can do that is Gilgamesh, and he is quite, quite insane.

Review: Michael Scott’s knack for bringing readers plenty of action and adventure has not dimmed in the slightest. The third installment of this exciting series is an enjoyable read for those who prefer fast-paced plots. Books such as these will leave an imprint on the reader, making their thirst for more of the series nearly insatiable. For the lovers of mythology and magic, I highly recommend it.

The characters were, once again, solid and fascinating to read about. The continuation of the previously introduced character’s adventures was satisfying, although Michael’ influx of new personae is what I enjoy most about the series. His creativity is undiminished.

Overall, The Sorceress is a great installment to the Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel series. It could be recommended to almost anybody who enjoys a deceptively juvenile and in-depth plot. Readers who have been fans of the series since the beginning will love to indulge upon this book and satisfy the always hungry literary monster which resides in us all.

http://www.dillonscott.com/

Scott, Michael. (2009). The Sorceress. New York: Random House.  

Eldest (Inheritance Cycle #2) by Christopher Paolini

Title: Eldest
Author: Christopher Paolini
Publisher: Alfred Knopf
Release Date: August 23, 2005 
Other Titles in Series: Eragon (#1), Brisingr (#3), Inheritence (#4)

Rating:
Characters: 20/20
Plot: 20/20
Originality: 20/20
Writing: 19/20
Recommendation: 20/20
Overall: 99/100 or A+ 
Source: Borrowed from friend (Eddy)

Synopsis: Eragon and his dragon, Saphira, have just saved the rebel state from destruction by the mighty forces of King Galbatorix, cruel ruler of the Empire. Now Eragon must travel to Ellesméra, land of the elves, for further training in magic and swordsmanship, vital skills for a Dragon Rider. It is the journey of a lifetime, filled with awe-inspiring new places and people, each day a fresh adventure. But chaos and betrayal plague him at every turn, and Eragon doesn’t know whom he can trust. Meanwhile, his cousin Roran must fight a new battle back home in Carvahall – one that puts Eragon in even graver danger… 

Review: The Inheritance Cycle is a series I am an undoubted fan of. Christopher Paolini’s debut, Eragon, was one of the best fantasies I’ve ever read, and it completely enthralled me. Only the lasting charm of a very good book can lead me to praising it so highly. Eldest was loaned to me by a dear friend, as was Eragon, and I can not effectively express the gratitude I have for him. If you are reading this Eddy, I thank you enormously.

When beginning Eldest, my heart immediately recognized the unique writing style of Christopher Paolini and practically melted. This is an adequate expression of how much I adore this series. Paolini has effectively mastered the molding of an in-depth plot, powerful characters, and inspired writing into a beautiful novel. He is one of the great inkweavers of the modern literary world.

The second installment of the Inheritance Cycle was a beautiful continuation of the series. Paolini worked his magic yet again in providing us readers with another succulent plot and a fresh batch of characters. Readers will traverse a written path, enamored by the extraordinary adventures of Eragon the dragon rider, and his companion Saphira. Eldest is truly an epic read for lovers of the fantasy genre.

So, if you ever have the chance to read Eragon, don’t hesitate to snatch the book and begin right away. When it comes to a great novel such as this, stealing and resorting to hedonistic greed is perfectly acceptable. Just joking! Only steal from your not-so close friends. 😉

http://www.alagaesia.com/

Paolini, Christopher. (2005). Eldest. United States: Alfred A. Knopf.

The Magician: The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott

Title: The Magician
Author: Michael Scott
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: May 26, 2008
Other Titles in series: The Alchemist (#1), The Sorceress (#3), The Necromancer (#4), The Warlock (#5)

Rating:
Characters: 18/20
Plot: 18/20
Originality: 18/20
Writing: 18/20
Recommendation: 19/20
Overall: 91/100 or A-
Source: Library

Synopsis: After fleeing Ojai, Nicholas, Sophie, Josh, and Scatty emerge in Paris, the City of Lights. Home for Nicholas Flamel. Only this homecoming is anything but sweet. Perenelle is still locked up back in Alcatraz and Paris is teeming with enemies. Niccolo Machiavelli, immortal author and celebrated art collector, is working for Dee. He’s after them, and time is running out for Nicholas and Perenelle. For every day spent without the Book of Abraham the Mage, they age one year-their magic becoming weaker and their bodies more frail. For Flamel, the Prophecy is becoming more and more clear. It’s time for Sophie to learn the second elemental magic: Fire Magic. And there’s only one man who can teach it to her: Flamel’s old student, the Comte de Saint-Germain-alchemist, magician, and rock star. Josh and Sophie Newman are the world’s only hope-if they don’t turn on each other first.

Review: The first installment left me pretty eager for the second. I enjoyed the fast-paced plot and action packed adventures. When I finally got my hands on The Magician, I thought, “how could a book get any more exciting?” The second book of Michael Scott’s fantastic fantasy is just as adrenaline pumping and fast-paced as the first, possibly even more so. It is a great read that I recommend to anyone who enjoys magic, conflict, and unimaginable adventures.

The characters were fairly solid, like the previous book, but with an extra infusion of genius on Micheal Scott’s  behalf, when he created Niccolo Machiavelli. A truly cunning character, Machiavelli takes the spotlight of the book in my opinion. His many aspects are masterfully welded together into one of the most fascinating personalities I have ever encountered before in a book. Truly, a job well-done. 😉

Overall, I could recommend this book to just about anybody. The younger crowd would be greatly appealed to the fast-paced, action-packed plot, while the older readers would be enamored my the many mythological references Scott includes. A very well rounded read in my opinion.

http://www.dillonscott.com/ 

Scott, Michael. (2008). The Magician. New York: Random House.