Genevieve, the crown princess of Verdeux, is faced with a challenge. With her seventeenth birthday fast approaching, she is being besieged by suitors, and must soon choose one. But, thus far, despite a procession of eligible men—young and old—from the other kingdoms, she has found none to her liking.
Then, one day, a messenger arrives at the palace, bearing a pendant and a seal for Genevieve, a seal with the image of a dragon. She has been ‘chosen.’ According to an ancient pact, every hundred years a princess from one of the realms, on the eve of her seventeenth birthday, is ‘chosen’ to be offered as a sacrifice to the dragons. In return, the kingdoms are spared from the wrath of the dragons and peace prevails.
Genevieve, though frightened, is resigned to her fate until a strange young woman, Chris, suddenly materializes in her chambers. Identifying herself as a freshman from Berkley, speaking in a strange way, and dressed in an outlandish fashion, Chris causes Genevieve to question everything she has been taught. Moreover, the strange newcomer decides to accompany Genevieve on the journey to her expected death—because she’s determined that it will not happen.
The Dragons’ Chosen by Gwen Dandridge is an enchanting fantasy novel that follows Genevieve and Chris as they journey into the wilderness beyond Verdeux; a journey during which both women discover profound truths and secrets that have lain hidden for longer than most can remember. Genevieve learns that not all noblemen are noble, and that many commoners are nobler than the highest lord, while Chris discovers a shocking truth about her own past that explains why she is able to transport from her dorm on the Berkley campus into a magical realm where dragons are not mythical creatures, but real. They also discover the truth behind the ancient compact between humans and dragons, a secret that has profound implications for the future of both. Both women also find love, something that has been lacking in their lives.
This is a book that will delight fantasy fans. In fact, it’s probably a great book by which to introduce the genre to those who have not read it before. It has fully-developed, complex characters; settings that make it a snap to suspend disbelief; and, a plot that draws you in immediately. The cover is exquisitely done in the classic fantasy/adventure style and foreshadows much of what the reader will find in the book.
Except for a few formatting (mostly paragraph indentations) problems, the book is professionally edited. The plot flows effortlessly from a teasing opening to a most satisfying conclusion, with each event unfolding logically from those that came before.
But for those pesky indentation issues, I would give this book five stars without hesitation, but in fairness, I must downgrade it to four and a half stars for them.