PUBLISHER: Curiosity Quills Press
DATE PUBLISHED: 23rd November 2015
Allyson fights acne, not trolls. As an inhaler-carrying member of the asthma society, she just wants to meet the father who turned her mother into a paranoid, move-across-the-nation freak. Now she’s trying to fit in at yet another school, but for the first time in her life, she has a best friend, Beth. When Allyson accidentally spits fire at kidnappers in the mall, she realizes why her father isn’t in the picture: she’s half dragon. Her acne? Emerging scales. Her asthma? The side effects of her dragon’s fire breath. Instead of freaking out, unflappable Beth reveals her own troll heritage and explains how things work with the supernatural creatures hiding within the modern world of smartphones and skyscrapers.
When trolls kidnap a unicorn, Beth gets blamed. Allyson is determined to prove Beth’s innocence and keep her friend off the unicorn chopping block. When they start looking for the kidnappers, they get a call from the last person they expect: Allyson’s father. He tries to warn them off, but he’s been put under a spell by the kidnappers to keep the victims from escaping. Nothing short of death can stop him. Now Allyson must choose between killing the father she’s always dreamed of, or letting her best friend die for a crime she didn’t commit.
This is a road-trip type paranormal fantasy in the style of Percy Jackson. Allyson is dumped in this paranormal world when she discovers that she is half-dragon and her best friend, Beth is half-troll. When a unicorn class mate is kidnapped and Beth is blamed the pair go in search of this unicorn to prove Beth’s innocence. I really liked the concept of the paranormal world in this urban fantasy setting. The different paranormal creatures that the pair meet along the way are interesting and the politics between these creatures makes for an interesting read.
I absolutely loved Beth’s character. She was brash and loveable and an absolutely fabulous friend in this book. I liked how the depiction of the multitude of paranormal characters showed shades of grey and the politic behind each of the species that Allyson was not aware of. Unicorns were not depicted as being symbols of innocence and goodness and that their horns can be used as weapons. The shifting element of the paranormal creatures was another interesting element. Each of the paranormal individuals in the book were able to shift from their human to their creature form which helped to explain the human appearance of these characters.
There were a few things that I felt let down the book down. I felt that the development of Allyson’s character did not really happen until about half way into the book and this impacted me ability to empathise with Allyson fully. I did like Allyson’s character but felt like if i was given more information earlier on, it would have impacted my opinion of Allyson.
Overall, this paranormal road-trip was interesting and a story that I really enjoyed. The characters were interesting but Allyson’s character could have used more development earlier on. I would love to read more in this world.
Keep Calm and Read On,