Dragons of the Watch

Our rating: ****

Though a well-educated tumanhofer, Ellicinderpart is just a farm girl with a goat named Tak for her best friend. When opportunity arises to visit the capitol for an upcoming royal wedding, she’s eager to take the special trip — but a sudden turn of events makes her journey a little too special. Trapped in an enchanted, over-sized city, populated only by an obscure old urohm and a horde of brutal, vicious children, Ellie’s first concern is simply that of survival. But it turns out she’s not the only tumanhofer to have fallen into this unique set of circumstances — she meets Bealomondore, a well-known and elite artist, who’s been trapped there for months now. Despite her initial distrust, the two must work together to unravel the mystery and ultimately discover how perseverance and love can bring restoration.

I always anticipate Donita K. Paul’s new releases. This, the final book of the Chiril Chronicles, takes a slightly different direction than its predecessors, but as far as adventure, humor, and truth goes, Dragons of the Watch definitely fulfills the established style of the author. If you’ve enjoyed her other books, you won’t want to miss this heart-warming conclusion.

Dragons of the Valley

Our rating: ****

No sooner have Tipper and her companions put down the threat of uprising—and reunited her father’s three statues—than war begins to threaten the land of Chiril. Men from the country of Baardack have begun to subtly invade, one of the most prominent being a strange, sentient hunter called the Grawl. The three statues, carved from one of the world’s corner stones, must not fall into the enemy’s hands. Bealomondore, a tumanhofer, is one of those responsible for transporting the statues to a safer place. An artist at heart, he must learn to put down his paintbrush and take up his sword to defend Chiril against this new threat.

In some ways this story seemed to feel a little bit different from some of the other books by Mrs. Paul. It isn’t my favorite of hers, but I definitely enjoy it. Truth is woven into the story, and the characters you’ve gotten to know from The Vanishing Sculptor (plus some new ones) have their opportunities to shine. There’s also some great humor involving Fenworth and his kimen companion, the reluctant hero artist, and Lady Peg’s mind as a weapon in itself against the enemy. The final book in the trilogy is scheduled to come out in October!