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Seraphina by [Hartman, Rachel]
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Seraphina Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 625 customer reviews
Book 1 of 2 in Seraphina (2 Book Series)

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Length: 387 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled Page Flip: Enabled
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Age Level: 12 and up Grade Level: 7 - 9

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Amazon Best Teen Book of the Month, July 2012: In Seraphina, dragons and humans maintain an uneasy peace and for a woman who is both there is nowhere to turn for acceptance--not even within herself. Seraphina has spent her young life concealing the truth of her parentage and authentic nature, a task that proves ever more difficult when she is thrust into the spotlight of the royal court. Author Rachel Hartman’s dragons take human form but shun the messiness of human emotion by remaining “in ard” (a highly rational state of mind), while their counterparts cling to a dangerous assumption of species superiority. As the anniversary of the treaty between the two sides approaches, court intrigue reaches a fever pitch and hard-won truths, betrayals, and intricacies of the heart are laid bare. Seraphina is a beautifully complex fantasy that delves into the most basic of desires—to be loved, to belong, and to find peace in self-acceptance. --Seira Wilson

Guest Review by Tamora Pierce

Tamora Pierce is a best-selling author of fantasy books for teenagers. Her books, known for their teenaged girl warriors and wizards, have received critical acclaim and a strong fanbase. Her newest book, Mastiff, is the third book in The Legend of Beka Cooper series.

In Seraphina's world, coldly intellectual dragons can take on the shapes--and feelings--of human beings. Sometimes this results in a surprise. Seraphina's father married a beautiful musician, and discovered too late that she was a dragon. She died, leaving him with a daughter who confuses him and his new wife and children.

Now the half-dragon Seraphina is the assistant to the cranky royal music master. She is in charge of Princess Glisselda's music lessons; she books performers for the 40-year celebration of the peace treaty between dragons and humans, and she rehearses the rowdy court musicians. She has to hide the scales on her arm and around her waist, and she can never let anyone find out that Orma, her music teacher, is actually a dragon.

When she plays the solo for the funeral of the realm's murdered prince, Seraphina is suddenly raised into entirely new, visible levels of peril. People she always avoided are noticing her. She has to attend social functions, where she is caught up in court politics, between those who support the treaty and those who want to destroy it. She runs afoul of conspirators who want to start the war again--one of them may be her own grandfather. She even discovers that Prince Lucian, who is betrothed to Princess Glisselda, is not only very sharp-eyed but also very agreeable to be around. He appreciates her insights on intrigue at court and in the city and uses her as an unofficial investigator into the ongoing unrest.

The plot thickens. A new religious order plots riots and revolution. Exiled knights return to report an unregulated dragon flying near where the old prince was murdered. The dragons are trying to send Orma for corrective surgery--they think he's gotten too human and they want to cut those parts out of his brain. Seraphina fears that if she tells the prince and the princess what she is, they'll hate her forever, but their work to preserve the treaty celebrations is bringing them closer together. And all of them are terrified that the dragons will decide that humans are not worth the trouble, and will destroy them at last.

I loved this book even more the second time I read it than I did the first. The characters are interesting and engaging, and I love the new look at dragons. For all that she's half-dragon, Seraphina is a very believable human being, caught between different loyalties and just trying to keep everyone she loves alive. But don't take my word for it--read it yourself!

From School Library Journal

Gr 7 Up-In the decades since the peace treaty was signed, a fragile amity has existed between humans and dragons. Or so it is believed. As the treaty's 40th anniversary nears, a rogue dragon masterminds a dangerous scheme to reignite the ancient war between the two species. Caught unwillingly in the crossfire is Seraphina Dombegh, assistant music mistress of the royal court, who guards a terrible secret: She is half-dragon, a genetic anomaly considered an abomination to both sides. Because of her unique ability to connect with dragonkind, she is reluctantly drawn into a high-profile murder investigation headed up by the acutely insightful Prince Lucian Kiggs. Seraphina knows this death is only the tip of the iceberg, below which lurks a plot far more sinister and far-reaching. But can she divulge what she knows without also revealing the truth about her heredity? Or her forbidden feelings for the prince? The audiobook cover's nondescript black-and-white does little to hint at the gorgeously vivid imagery contained within Rachel Hartman's stunning debut novel (Random, 2012). Although the pace unfolds rather slowly, the story is by no means dry. Hartman's detailed storytelling and intricate plotting are reminiscent of Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" trilogy and Franny Billingsley's Chime. Mandy Williams's crisp voice harmonizes perfectly with the lyrical writing and lush ambiance of this exquisite tale. Fantasy enthusiasts will be enthralled throughout. A must have!-Alissa Bach, Oxford Public Library, MIα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Product details

  • File Size: 2694 KB
  • Print Length: 387 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0552566004
  • Publisher: Ember; Reprint edition (July 10, 2012)
  • Publication Date: July 10, 2012
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005IQZC2M
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #95,044 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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