After seeing Rob talk about this book over on the Kboards site, I was really stoked to give this one a read. I’m a sucker for strong female characters, especially if it’s a main character. Plus, the premise of Dragon Killer just sounded wicked cool to me.
If you’ve missed it, you can find an excerpt from the book on the site here. This is the first book in the Kal Moonheart series and two other books are available to read after this one.
I recently had a chance to read this book on a long flight. Check out my review below – but be warned that there are some spoilers for those of you who have yet to read this one.
I knew that I was in this one for the long haul when … in chapter I.ii we see Kal sneaking around rooftops and breaking into the home of a politician to threaten him. She’s like a badass Robin Hood-type of character, which is pretty darn cool. Kal is portrayed as strong, smart and just as awesome as the next tough guy. And yet, she is still feminine, which is something that a lot of writers fail to capture when writing strong chicks doing typical guy stuff. I really loved the characterization of Kal. And not too long after this cat burglar-esque scene, she gets sent on a quest by her financier, which is another thing that I love about books in the fantasy genre.
Style snippet … I like to share a snippet of books reviewed here so that interested readers can see what they’re info for before buying a book. However, this book seems to have a combination of styles in terms of the writing, and that’s not exactly a good thing. If you take a look at the except previously posted here, then you will see how the stronger writing is in this book. But the other parts of the book read more like a rough first draft – there is too much unnecessary detail and clunky liking for my taste. Here’s an sample passage to illustrate this:
She dipped into her store of roughly-ground roasted coffee beans and threw a handful into the pot on the fire. She left it brewing while she cracked three eggs into a deep iron skillet. And while they were cooking, she cut two thick slices of rye bread and set them to toast. Kal hummed to herself tunelessly as she beat up the eggs; subconsciously timing it all so that the coffee frothed, the eggs scrambled and the bread started to char at almost the same moment. She raked over the hot coals of the oven and took her food to her small table to eat.
Paragraphs like this really pulled me out of the story because they were mostly just random bits of text that did nothing to move the story forward – of course, this might just be my personal preference.
Fortunately, the overall story itself was strong enough to help me push through the boring bits and make it through to the end.
What surprised me about this book … is the reveal of who the financier is toward the end of the book. I was also interested to see how the frequent flashbacks actually had a good purpose. Personally, I tend to hate flashbacks in any type of book and was just waiting to be annoyed at the ones in this book, so it was a pleasant surprise to see that they actually had some legit purpose to the story.
My favorite character … is obviously Kal. She’s strong and mysterious – what’s not to like? I also really enjoyed the banter between Kal and Rafe. He was a fun character that I was sorry to see leave the story.
Final thoughts … though there were some parts of this book that I did not enjoy as much as the others, this was still a fun read. It does not have a cliff hanger ending, but it definitely leaves you wanting to read more of Kal’s adventures. And knowing that there are two other books available in this series makes it an even better read because there’s no waiting for more stories!
If you enjoy fantasy books with a bit of a quest and a strong female lead, then this one is worth checking out. Get the book here.
Check out our interview with the author for more about this book!