Title: Dragons Walk Among Us
Author: Dan Rice
Genre: YA Fantasy/ YA Urban Fantasy
Shutterbug Allison Lee is trying to survive high school while suffering the popular girl's abuse. Her life is often abysmal, but at least her green hair is savage. Her talent for photography is recognized by the school paper and the judges of a photo contest.
While visiting her friend Joe, a homeless vet, Allison's life irrevocably changes after an attack leaves her blind. All her dreams as a photojournalist are dashed as she realizes she'll never see again. Despair sets in until she is offered an experimental procedure to restore her vision. But there are side effects, or are they hallucinations? She now sees dragons accompanying some of the people she meets. Can she trust her eyes, or has the procedure affected her more than she can see?
A devastating attack, an experimental eye surgery, throws Allison Lee's life in turmoil as she starts seeing dragons walking among us. All Allison wants is to survive high school and avoid the tormenting of her bully. She escapes the pain through photography and has a real talent for it, even receiving praise from judges at a photo contest. She visits her friend in a homeless shelter and through an attack is rendered blind. Despair sets in as Allison has nothing to live for, that is until an experimental surgery promises to restore her sight. Sure, there are side effects, but she's willing to risk it if she can see again. Only what she sees throws her life in peril. Dragons walking among the living as she walks down the street? Is she imagining it or did the surgery reveal the true world?
Dragons Walk Among Us is a compelling young adult fantasy I read in one sitting. From the first page, the reader is thrown into Allison's world where she is inundated with cruel bullying. While I give credit for Dan Rice's descriptive narration, my stomach turned on several occasions as I read scene after scene of intense bullying. I connected with Allison right away and my heart broke as she lost her sight. The emotional narration is very real and pulled the reader into the story. The fantasy sub-plot with the dragons was so imaginative, I whipped through the pages just to find out what happened next. The plot moves at a great pace with plenty of twists and turns to entertain the reader. This is Dan Rice's debut novel, and I was honestly surprised as his writing is impeccable and sophisticated. I look forward to reading more from Dan Rice. If you love fantasy adventure, you'll want to read Dragons Walk Among Us. If you're an epic fantasy reader with a love for dragons, you need to read Dragons Walk Among Us. Highly recommend!
My Rating: 5 stars
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Dan has wanted to write novels since first reading Frank Herbert’s Dune at the age of eleven. A native of the Pacific Northwest, he often goes hiking with his family through mist-shrouded forests and along alpine trails with expansive views.
Dragons Walk Among Us is his debut novel. He plans to keep writing fantasy and science-fiction for many years.
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Reviewed by: Mrs. N