by Donita K. Paul
And here is the final installment of Paul’s Dragonkeeper series. I found these books moderately enjoyable overall – I really, really wanted to like them, but I found myself liking the concept of them far better than the execution far too much of the time.
In Dragonfire, Wulder’s followers were able to defeat the enemies and bring peace to the land. In Dragonlight, the country is attempting to embrace that peace and establish the new normal. Unfortunately, the citizens of the country are soon to learn that evil does not have to come from outside influences.
Like I said, I really wanted to like this series, and especially this final book, but, per usual, I felt like the story created way more questions than it resolved. First off, the meech dragons. I don’t get them. They give me the weirds – they’re dragons who can walk and talk like humans, but are still dragons?? They are completely intelligent but not considered a high race??
Gilda is a meech dragon whose character has been completely up and down; she’s switched from villain to heroine to just plain obnoxious far too many times; her character wasn’t developed so much as it was muddied at every turn. I spent the whole book just wanting to throttle her, and having no idea why anyone else was acting like what she was doing and saying was fine.
We get this random group of heretics who just sort of show up and start misleading people, and it’s never really resolved satisfactorily – I mean, yes, they find the ringleader and bring him to justice, but in the meantime – you’ve redistributed people’s property and children and not really explained how it’s all going to go back, not to mention the implication that the elderly were being put to death by this group – that never really go resolved, either; it was more of just a throw-away oh-hey-by-the-way kinda thing.
There’s this giant evil dragon whose been sleeping for centuries but suddenly just happens to wake up and everything time he moves he sheds scales and these scales turn into these little evil dragons blah blah blah, well these tiny evil dragons keep attacking Kale, presumably because she’s the Dragonkeeper but… we never find out why??
Kale gets pregnant, and suddenly we find out like all these vague rules about how o’rants have babies and stuff that are never really explained and it’s like she just made up these gestation rules so she could make it all fit into her story (something like they get pregnant but the pregnancy doesn’t really REALLY start until she’s relaxed and exposed to new places or something and then the baby grows really slow so you don’t even know she’s pregnant until the very end and then it goes super fast and then something special has to happen for her to actually have the baby or something????)
We’ve got an apparently ageless little kimen who I guess Wulder just made her stay the same age for a while because bad stuff happened to her when she was a kid so he kinda froze her age and then put an egg of truth in her???
There was just too much. I felt like Paul really wanted to make this big point about how Truth was the most important thing, but she did it in this very convoluted and complicated manner, and having an actual rock/egg thing BE Truth seemed clumsy. Too many of Paul’s attempts at analogy are far too obvious to be a good analogy; I just feel like the concept is being shoved in my face instead of pleasantly slipped into my drink to be swallowed and contemplated later.
A 3/5 for this series as a whole. I’ve heard other people really enjoy these books and rave about Paul’s world building, but her style just wasn’t mine. The stories had a lot of potential, and I liked a lot of the characters, but overall things were just overly complicated and too aggressively spiritual to be my style.