Monday, April 28, 2014

Book Review: "A Natural History of Dragons: A Memoir by Lady Trent" by Marie Brennan

Is anyone else in the mood for dragons now that "Game of Thrones" is back on? I hope so, because that's what you are getting!

Our book today is a memoir of a fake person. It's written in her later years, but the book is set from when she was a little girl to when she's about 20. For what it's worth, the places that are named are not on any map I've ever seen, and the date given is 5658.Though the descriptions make it sound medieval times-like. So just in case the fact that it's about dragons hasn't alerted you that this is a work of fiction, that should. Onward and upward...

Our narrator, and the memoir's main character is Isabella.She's the only girl in her well to do family of 6 kids. She seems to have a low tolerance of all things ladylike, but it intensely curious about the natural world and has her brother sneak books from her father's intensive library so she can learn more. A question about why birds have wishbones leads to a messy dove autopsy which gets her in trouble as an 8 year old, but her father appreciates that she has an inquisitive mind and let's her borrow a book about what bird anatomy.

After a close call with a dragon after a reckless moment her mother begs her to put aside all the crazy learning about dragons so she can concentrate on lady-like things so she might actually be able to snag a husband. Isabella realizes that this probably a good thing for her future, so she abandons her learning about nature and picks up learning how to run an estate.

2 years later it's time for her to find a husband, because she's about 17, which as we all know is prime marrying age. (sarcasm). Her dad, remembering her love of books, gives her a list of good men who have large libraries in their family estates. She takes heart that maybe she could love one of these men if at least they both love reading and learning.

She meets one of the men, Jacob, by chance at the local royalties animal menagerie. This includes three dragons, they begin to talk to each other about they are both fascinated by dragons, they start courting, they decide to get married. He doesn't do anything to discourage her dragon interest, and he even lets her breed a couple and keep them in an outbuilding on their estate.They're very small dragons, like the size of your hand. Not Toothless from "How to Train Your Dragon" size.

Toothless!!! A Black Philippinean Cold Fire dragon are originated in the Philippine Islands in Asia Pacific. Once it matured this dragons migrates to East Regions such Ireland. And then they came back to their birthplace to hatch their eggs.
ps I adore Toothless, I think he's so cute, like only a animated animal can be.

Anyway, Jacob is invited on a dragon research mission and Isabella begs to come along, if in no other capacity as a note taker/secretary/organizer. He reluctantly agrees and they had off on their adventure!

I don't want to give up too much but the adventure includes: dragons, smugglers, jealousy, folk tales, offending locals, surly handmaids and murder most foooooooooul.

I thought this book was fun. I liked the format. I liked that she talked about dragons like they were real and the way that she made reference to other adventures that she had I suspect/hope that their might be one or two more of these in the publishing future. And I like that the cover looks like a textbook. I give it a high 3 out of 5!

A Natural History of Dragons: A Memoir by Lady Trent

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