Donita K . Paul
What the Covers Say:
One Dragon Egg Holds the Key to the Future.Once a slave, Kale is given the unexpected opportunity to become a servant to Paladin. Yet this young girl has much to learn about the difference between slavery and service.
A Desperate Search Begins...A small band of Paladin's servants rescue Kale from danger but turn her from her destination: The Hall, where she was to be trained. Feeling afraid and unprepared, Kale embarks on a perilous quest to find the meech dragon egg stolen by the foul wizard Risto. First, she and her comrades must find Wizard Fenworth. But their journey is threatened when a key member of the party is captured, leaving the remaining companions to find Fenworth, attempt an impossible rescue, and recover the egg whose true value they have not begun to suspect...
A New Quest Begins.A dragonkeeper of Paladin, Kale is summoned from The Hall to The Bogs by the Wizard Fenworth to serve as his apprentice and tend his newly hatched meech dragon, Regidor. But Kale isn't going alone. The Hall is sending a student to monitor her performance and report back to the scholars. Worst of all, it's Bardon -- an older boy Kale finds irritating but who at least can hold his own in a sword fight.
New Friendships are Forged. Meanwhile, Wizard Risto has seized another meech dragon, bringing him dangerously close to gaining the power he seeks. So with only a motley band of companions, Kale sets out on a desperate quest to rescue the second meech, to free those dragons already enslaved, and to thwart Risto's devious plans. It's up to Kale to lead the search and to embrace the role that's rightfully hers. But will her efforts be enough to save the land of Amara from the dark future that awaits at Risto's hands?
Before vowing his allegiance to Wulder as a knight, Bardon heads to the mountains for solitude. His life is suddenly complicated by a woman and her granddaughter, N’Rae, on a mission to rescue the woman’s son trapped in a chamber of sleep. Bardon learns that more of Paladin’s knights are imprisoned–and suspects one of them is Dragon Keeper Kale’s missing father.
The secret is in their hands–and hearts.
The band travels north, uncertain of their destination and encountering numerous perils. When they unlock the chamber, they discover a dozen knights–who cannot be awakened. The journal holding the secret to rousing them is in an unknown language. How can they find the help they need, and overcome even graver obstacles, to rescue the knights?
Coming June 2007
If you've never read fantasy, this is a good series to start with. There are great allegorical lines woven through the story, but they don't overshadow the plot. If you like allegory, love to really dig for the bigger picture, then there is plenty here for you. If you find that allegory usually flies right over your head no matter how much hairspray you use, then you can still enjoy this series. I think what makes it so readable for so many age groups and tastes, is its flawless story telling. You really care about Kale, Bardon and the rest of their questing friends. Even the dragons have great characters. I want my own minor dragon so bad I can hardly stand it. Choosing which one, though, would be hard. :)
Although some readers are comparing her works to Narnia and Lord of the Rings, I 'd have to say that I actually think Donita's work is more accessible. Tolkien and Lewis are legendary writers and I love their work, but their writing style is not as easily read or understood by many. Donita doesn't talk down to her readers, she doesn't spoon feed you like a baby. She just shares an amazing adventure and invites you along for the ride.
I promise you won't be disapointed.