Friday, December 5, 2014

ARC Review: Talon by Julie Kagawa

by Julie Kagawa

Series: Talon #1
Genre: YA, urban fantasy
Published October 28th 2014 by Harlequin Teen
Source: Publisher
Purchase: Amazon * Barnes and Noble * Book Depository
Local purchase/order: Fullybooked * National Bookstore

Blurb (Goodreads):
Long ago, dragons were hunted to near extinction by the Order of St. George, a legendary society of dragon slayers. Hiding in human form and growing their numbers in secret, the dragons of Talon have become strong and cunning, and they're positioned to take over the world with humans none the wiser.

Ember and Dante Hill are the only sister and brother known to dragonkind. Trained to infiltrate society, Ember wants to live the teen experience and enjoy a summer of freedom before taking her destined place in Talon. But destiny is a matter of perspective, and a rogue dragon will soon challenge everything Ember has been taught. As Ember struggles to accept her future, she and her brother are hunted by the Order of St. George.

Soldier Garret Xavier Sebastian has a mission to seek and destroy all dragons, and Talon's newest recruits in particular. But he cannot kill unless he is certain he has found his prey: and nothing is certain about Ember Hill. Faced with Ember's bravery, confidence and all-too-human desires, Garret begins to question everything that the Order has ingrained in him: and what he might be willing to give up to find the truth about dragons.

My Thoughts:

* This review is based on the advance reading copy. There might be some changes with the finished copy.

Yet another Julie Kagawa novel and with dragons in it? Yes, please! I couldn't be more excited when I found out about Talon. Not to mention that beautiful cover.

Talon was told in two perspectives on the first part, with Ember and Garret. Ember is sixteen years old on her human form and a young red dragon in her true form (can't remember whether her dragon age was mentioned). Ember didn't appeal to me from the beginning. I think she was supposed to turn out to be fiery, strong-willed, and independent, but for me, she looked like an anti-social (psychologically means: rule-breaker) spoiled teenager dragon. She's not even real human. Garret was fine for me. I like his soldier background and how he come undone as the story progressed. However, he seemed to become like Ember, slowly breaking the commands of the Order. As I witness the new Garret, I became fully aware on how he think and act and well, he sounded like Ember. His character lost its consistency.

Another POV was added on the part two of the book which belonged to Riley, a rogue  (rebel) dragon. Riley's a bad boy (or dragon) you'd probably have read in so many books. I don't know, he doesn't appeal to me as well. It came out cliche. His appearance ticked one thing I feared the most: love triangle. It drove me crazy. And with many POVs shown, there were hardly a mystery--which I think would make this book better if Talon had only one narrator. It's like, everything's out in the open and I wouldn't have to think, guess, or beg for more, and it didn't end up well.

The plot would've turn out more appealing and bad-ass (it's about dragons!) if not for the cliche love triangle (and the flow of love story) and characterization. I hate myself for not liking it but I wanted to stay true. I really liked the Talon background or the world Julie made about dragons, the rebels, and the human dragon slayers, St. George. The near ending part made me breathless and squirm with excitement because of the series of action. It was almost perfect until the real ending arrived. I have seen the sequel, Rogue, on Goodreads (love the cover) but I'm not sure about it for now. We'll see.

Talon had a really interesting element which are the dragons. The story could do much better, it has a great potential, I can see it. However, I'm afraid the characters and flow of the story didn't work for me. I'm not saying it wouldn't work for you, you should still give it a try specially if you really wanted the likes. I would recommend this to Julie Kagawa fans as well and urban fantasy readers. I really have to say urban fantasy because it wasn't high fantasy, like I assumed.

* Thank you so much Cara and Harlequin UK for the review copy in exchange of an honest review!




  1. I enjoyed this book a lot more than you did, but I was definitely frustrated with the love triangle aspect. Sigh.

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

    1. I'm still glad you were able to like it. I would've if not for a few aspects, and yes that includes the love triangle.

  2. I am with you. I didn't like this book as much as I would have liked to. I thought it would be so much more but it wasn't. Ember was annoying. I had big issues with how she constantly betrayed her "dragon" even though she was taught not to. There wasn't anything that made me understand why she was so trusting of humans, besides the fact that she just wanted to rebel. I think I gave it a 3 and I was being generous.

    1. I know. She acts like a teenage spoiled brat, when she isn't one. This could turn out really good if it had more edge than soft that it was.

  3. I think Julie Kagawa books all seem to feature love triangles! I am really tired of that trope. I was so excited to read this but by the time I got to check it out from the library I'd already started to see some negative reviews (and found out about the love triangle) so I changed my mind. Your review reinforces that decision. I think there are better dragon books out there.

    Thanks for sharing your honest thoughts!


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