Monday, October 15, 2012

The Dragon's Tooth

The Dragon's Tooth (Ashtown Burials, 1) by N.D. Wilson, August 23, 2011. 485 pages. Published by Random House Books for Young Readers. Source: bought.
For two years, Cyrus and Antigone Smith have run a sagging roadside motel with their older brother, Daniel. Nothing ever seems to happen. Then a strange old man with bone tattoos arrives, demanding a specific room.
Less than 24 hours later, the old man is dead. The motel has burned, and Daniel is missing. And Cyrus and Antigone are kneeling in a crowded hall, swearing an oath to an order of explorers who have long served as caretakers of the world's secrets, keepers of powerful relics from lost civilizations, and jailers to unkillable criminals who have terrorized the world for millennia. 
First Sentence:
North of Mexico, south of Canada, and not too far west of the freshwater sea called Lake Michigan, in a place where cows polka-dot hills and men are serious about cheese, there is a lady on a pole.
I'm going to start this review differently then usual by thanking one of my super awesome sisters. My sister knew I really wanted to read The Dragon's Tooth and got it for me through Random Buzzers-isn't she great. Thanks, J!!

Talk about an exhilarating read, Dragon's Tooth was such an action packed thrilling read once I got by the first couple of chapters. I barely wanted to out it down because I had to know if Cyrus and Antigone were going to be able to pass the stringent test that was of the order members insisted that they go through, and even more importantly if they were ever going to save there older brother who was taken as leverage.
I felt that N.D. Wilson did such an amazing job of creating a scenario that would test his characters and push them to the edge of their endurance, and that they rose to the opportunity made it all the better because the odds were so not in their favor. It was just a well balanced book that pulled me in pretty much from the get go.

The Dragon's Tooth had me from the moment Billy Bones came into the picture, as well, as the mention of a secret organization that fought to keep the world from being overrun by darkness, plus I really enjoyed the way that the author incorporated it into the story and that unbeknownst to them the tie that the Smith children had to the O of B.

I'm really looking forward to seeing were the story well go in The Drowned Vault, which came out last month, because the end of book one left me with almost as many questions as there were answers. I really liked that while some of the plot lines were cleared up there were still things left up in the air that gave you a hint as what to expect int he book. Personally, I'm hoping that book two will show\ a little more backstory on Cyrus, Antigone, and Order of Branden.

There are just a ton of things I wish to say about The Dragon's Tooth, but my spoiler alert just keeps going off. So, I'll leave off this section...after I tell y'all one more thing. This might sounds a little strange, but I really enjoyed reading about those that the order had imprisoned because the author did a great job on everything-from the details of how they were kept there, to why they were imprisoned. It was creepy, but gave you a better look into what the order was created for.

One of the things that made Cyrus such an interesting character would have to be the little quirks that set him apart, making him an original. I loved that he had these odd little things, like, collecting tires and digging through the river to find them. It was just a little weird, but yet made him stand out. I also liked him because he just seemed like a good kid who had been dealt a hard life, but who was trying to move forward and make the best of what he did have.

Favorite thing, what was my favorite thing...the writing. What I found most enjoyable was N.D. Wilson's writing and his ability bring Ashtown and Order of Branden to life, even with the slow start. His writing and ability to bring the landscape and architecture in The Dragon's Tooth was just brilliant. It was so vivid that I could easily picture the way the O of B looked in my mind, and trust me that is a big deal. I really enjoy when an author can describe the location that the characters reside in without giving so much detail that all you want is for them to get back to the story, and that is what happened in this book.

Even though I truly enjoyed reading The Dragon's Tooth, I felt that the book started out just a little on the slow side. It took maybe three chapters for the story to truly get going and for things to start happening. Even so, the slow start is definitely worth reading through because the rest of the book was an absolute joy to read.

Final Verdict: Dragon's Tooth, was a combination of great writing and excellent storytelling, add in the great plot and characters and this book is one not to be missed. 

The Dragon's Tooth earns 5 out of 5 pineapples.

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