Title: The Last Dragon
Author: Daryl Devoré
Genre: Medieval Fantasy Romance
What do dragons, knights and romance have in common? Grab a copy of multi-published author Daryl Devore’s medieval fantasy romance – The Last Dragon and discover the answer.
A sorcerer craving dominance merged with a dragon, the power overwhelmed him causing him to split into three dragons. Demora ruled thought but was lost in time. Yidithe offered protection, shining like the light of the sun. Ayrradex craved chaos, reavelling in destroying souls.
Many knights died, attempting to slay the devil beast. One knight, Prince Hawkyns, did not fear death. He’d lost everything. Away on a mission when Ayrradex attacked his father’s kingdom, Penrythe, Hawkyns returned to find his noble father – feeble and defeated. His wise mother – crazed. His beautiful wife and unborn child - dead. Only a pile of ashes remained for him to bury. He knelt before his King and vowed to slay the devil-beast or be slain.
Derry was born with powers that terrified her parents. They delivered her to a nunnery to be raised in secret. Jathe, a wise sorceress, discovered the young girl and trained her to one day use the secret hidden in her soul.
Legends spoken around campfires hinted the sole way to destroy Ayrradex was when the hearts of a knight and a golden dragon became one. But after a vicious battle with Ayrradex, the golden dragon was thought to be dead.
Can Prince Hawkyns’s bravery and Derry’s powers end the reign of the devil-beast’s terror?
The clatter of metal interrupted their conversation. The abbot rounded the hedge’s corner, struggling with the load of a sword, shield, and the reins of a saddled steed. He placed the armour on the bench. “These are for ye. They were left by a young knight who died.” The abbot nodded towards the abbey cemetery. “He lies yonder in our consecrated ground. The dragon was too much for him. I pray they will help ye protect the babe and defeat the scourge that plagues us.”
Hawkyns lifted the blade and checked it. He turned the shield. A wave of pain rolled off him and hit Derry. Cringing, she dropped to her knees. Hawkyns knelt beside her, concern covering his brow. She placed her fingers on his cheek. “Ye knew him? The knight whose shield that is.” She nodded towards the bench. “I felt yer pain.”
“Aye. I know this shield.” He held out his hand and helped her stand. “He was a brave knight. See, these interlaced annulets and shafted arrow. This is the shield of my younger brother, Adon. It will be an honour to carry his weapon.”
Screams filled the air. Derry gripped her head. The rage was too much. She could not push it away.
A monk raced to the side of the abbot. “People at the gate. With torches and knives and… and… The monastery is attacked. They want the babe.” He clutched at his chest, trying to inhale air.
Hawkyns slipped his arm through the shield’s straps and gripped his weapon. Derry could sense the anger building in him. It wasn’t evil anger. It was the anger of a knight knowing he must right an injustice.
“Derry, stay back here. Take the horse and hide in the herbarium. I will get the child and return.”
The abbot stood in front of Hawkyns, barring his attack. “Ye cannot kill anyone within the walls of the abbey. This is a place of peace. Of God.”
Hawkyns flinched. “But if they kill yer brothers?”
The monk lowered his head. “'Tis God’s will.”
Hawkyns’ knuckles turn white from the grip on his sword. Frustrated anger filled his brow.
Father Jacobus raised his hand. “Do not fight me on this, my son. Swear, in the eyes of God, that ye will not kill within the walls of Baswich Abbey.”
Hawkyns knelt and placed the point of his sword on the ground and rested his forehead on the cross-shaped hilt. “I swear I will kill no one on abbey grounds.”
The abbot made the sign of the cross over him. “Go. Save the child.”
Hawkyns stood then raced around the hedge and disappeared.
As he reached the abbey forecourt, Hawkyns skidded to a stop. Before him was a scene of chaos. Farmers and townspeople carrying pitchforks, scythes, knives, and poles stormed about the area. They would rattle their weapons and yell, “Bring us the babe.” Then the mass of armed humanity would randomly surge to another section of the large square and repeat their demands.
To his left, a group had circled a monk. Their farm implements aimed at the brother.
Hawkyns moved to step forward but was stopped by an urgent shout. He turned. Pariset slipped out from behind a building. His father close on his heels.
“Ye should not be here.” Hawkyns frowned.
Insulted rage filled Pariset’s voice. “I have come to protect my sister.”
“Not ye, young warrior.” Hawkyns tilted his head towards the man. “Yer father.”
“I, also, have come to protect my child.” Randell stood tall, holding out his forge hammer.
Hawkyns shook his head. “I respect yer desire to protect yer child. But, if ye are here then so is the babe. If Pariset is here, ‘tis a youth seeking adventure. But ye are the babe’s father. Please, leave. On my word as a knight, I will get the child safely away.” He flipped the sword point up and tapped the hilt on his chest.
Pariset’s father heaved a deep sigh then held out his hand. “Randell.”
Hawkyns shifted his sword to his left hand, shook the out-stretched hand and introduced himself.
“I have one more request.” Randell pushed Pariset forward. “Take my son. Protect him. If the devil dragon comes, I do not want his soul taken.” With a brief hug to his son, Randell turned and disappeared around the building.
“Ye, to the church. Hide in the pews. Do not answer to anyone but Father Jacobus or myself. Go. Now!” Hawkyns did not wait for a reply, turning, he raced towards the group circling the monk who had dropped to his knees, head lowered, and hands folded in supplication.
The brother repeated his prayer like one of the morning chants. “Father, forgive them. I offer my life as a sacrifice for the life of an innocent.”
His willingness to die for the young babe stirred Hawkyns’ drive to protect all whom he could. The battle-fire boiled in him as he shoved his way into the circle. Standing before the grey-haired brother he raised the point of his sword to chest level. Deliberate step-by-step and with rage glowing in his eyes, he moved around the group, weapon aimed at each person’s heart.
“No one defiles the brother. He is a man of God. He brings only peace. He has harmed no one. He is not afraid to die. He knows he will lie in the arms of God.”
One farmer straightened and scoffed. “There is only one of ye and many of us.” He edged his pitchfork forward.
Buy Links (including Goodreads and BookBub):
Amazon - ebook - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08QPW4CVF
Amazon - print - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08QRVJ59P
Amazon – Hardcover - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B095GLQ4NP
Amazon – Audio - https://www.amazon.ca/The-Last-Dragon/dp/B094YMNP6B
Audible Audio - https://www.audible.ca/pd/The-Last-Dragon-Audiobook/B094YRKT76
BookSprout – https://booksprout.co/book/69199/the-last-dragon
Goodreads page - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/56350004-the-last-dragon
What makes your featured book a must-read?
The comment from a reviewer sums it up –
This has the potential to be a film, I was drawn into the pages, and time just ceased to exist! Beautifully written, thought out well, and executed brilliantly. The characters were so different from what I’ve read. Hawkyns feeling he’d let his father and family down. Derry wanting more from her life.
There is a twist to the story that I totally didn’t see coming. In fact, there was two…. It’s a slow burning love story, which is nice to read once in a while. The action is fast paced and well written. The fury and anger that both Hawkyns and Derry feel is well explained. How could a village turn on Derry? And how can they think of even offering up the newborn babe to the dragon? I liked when Hawkyns explains to Pariset that he would be honoured to be his friend and King in the future.
So, does Hawkyns defeat the dragon? How is Derry pivotal to the plot? And can they honestly be together when Fate may have different plans for them? Love may not conquer all!!!
I’m hoping for more stories in this land. I’m hoping to see more of Pariset, Derry and Hawkyns.
Do I recommend this book? Hell, yes I do. Knights, dragons, fair maidens, and magic. What’s not to like and recommend. It’s George and the dragon meets Disney and a whole lot more!
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