Firebolt (Dragonian #1)

Firebolt (The Dragonian, #1)Firebolt Summary: 
Dragons. Right. Teenage girls don’t believe in fairy tales, and sixteen-year old Elena Watkins was no different.

Until the night a fairy tale killed her father.

Now Elena’s in a new world, and a new school. The cutest guy around may be an evil dragon, a Prince wants Elena’s heart, and a long dead sorcerer may be waking up to kill her. Oh. And the only way Elena’s going to graduate is on the back of a dragon of her own.

Teenage girls don’t believe in fairy tales. Now it’s time for Elena to believe – in herself.

Firebolt Review: 
This book turned out to be an alright read. It wasn't fantastic as far as other fantasy books go but it did get you interested and curious enough to read the next book. The premise was really interesting but the story itself proved to a bit hard to read. The writing came off as childish and weak with the lack of a large vocabulary. The plot and characters were not developed. The setting was very confusing making it hard to get into the story.

As we started off with the story we are thrown in an action scene. What should have been an intense scene, with the dragons and fighting, came off as cliche. Scenes like the car not starting when they needed to get away, the girl with the daddy issues, the sacrifice her dad makes, and the action. The only thing I could understand is Elena feeling sad about moving because it would take a toll on any girl when she can't develop any connections and got attacked by dragons. The beginning did need some work but the rest of the story was enjoyable.

The side characters were quirky and interesting. It would be great to see more of them and about them. There wasn't much depth to any of the other characters which made them more likeable but hopefully in the next book we get a little more insight into them. The reason they felt so basic is because Dragonian (the school) is exactly like a movie high school. You have the mean girls, jocks, the ice guy that every girl falls for, the nice guy, the best friends and then the shy new girl.

Elena was a main character that needed to be more fleshed out as she lacked any significant development throughout the story. She started off emotionally distraught which was understandable with her backstory. I didn't get irritated by her crying at this point. Then at the halfway point I was getting annoyed by all the crying because she did it at the drop of a hat. She acted like she had no way to deal with or release her emotions, which she did with her friends and boyfriend. While her friendship and love were not developed well, it just popped out there that they were in a relationship, Woods showed that they would be there for her.

Another thing about her character that was poorly done is her attitude towards a confrontation. Now, I'm not saying that she should go jump into a fight and completely get her not wanting to draw attention to herself. But there is a difference between creating a fighting and protecting yourself! She nearly gets killed and instead of looking at other solutions, like getting a guard to watch over during this part, goes back into the same situation and hopes for something better. What makes this is worse right when we are approaching the climax, we are expected to believe that she can lead a mission. She comes up with this great idea that, for some reason no one has thought about this, decides to go there without knowing where it is,without a plan and doesn't want any help even though she knows nothing about what she is doing. Of course it works out, but the climax would have been more believable if her character changed gradually towards that.

The setting was the biggest problem because you couldn't understand where and how everything takes place. Here are some questions that I kept thinking about throughout the book.

1. How is there a place big enough for dragons to fly around in the human realm without them being discovered or being near a city.
2. How does Paegeria have it's own paparazzi or kingdom?
3. Has has no one in Paegeria seen a plane or vice versa?
4. Do all their dragons have lush lips? Shouldn't they be more like lizards?
5. This isn't a question related to the setting, but why all the giggling? You can laugh, chuckle, smile but it was always giggling.

There were a couple good things about this book. First is the Japanese lore mixed in with the Dragon Lore. It proved to be an interesting combination and I hope we get a lot more of that in the next book. Another was the trials at the climax of the book. It was really action packed, and a much better action scene that the opening one.

Overall, this book is a 2.5 star reading. It definitely needed some work on the development but it was still an enjoyable story that makes me want to read the next book.

Thank you to Netgalley for providing an ARC in exchange for a honest review!

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