Narrator: Shiromi Arserio
Series: Shapeshifter Dragons #1
Published by Self Published on 1 April 2015
Length: 14hr and 33min
Source: Author, Submitted
Chained to a rock and tossed off a cliff by her boyfriend, Aranya is executed for high treason against the Sylakian Empire. Falling a league into the deadly Cloudlands is not a fate she ever envisaged. But what if she did not die? What if she could spread her wings and fly?
Long ago Dragons ruled the Island-World above the Cloudlands. But their Human slaves cast off the chains of Dragonish tyranny. Humans spread across the Islands in their flying Dragonships, colonizing, building, and warring. Now the all-conquering Sylakians have defeated the last bastion of freedom - the Island-Kingdom of Immadia.
Evil has a new enemy. Aranya, Princess of Immadia. Dragon Shapeshifter.
There is a companion series to Aranya, set in the same unique Island-World above the Cloudlands. Aranya is the last of the Dragons - or is she? Find out why the Dragons disappeared in The Pygmy Dragon, now available on Kindle.
©2014 Marc Secchia (P)2015 Marc Secchia
ABR received this audiobook for free from the Author, Submitted in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect our opinion of the audiobook or the content of our review.Buy from Audible Buy from Amazon.comAdd to Goodreads
Aranya is the first novel in a series called Shapeshifter Dragons by Marc Secchia. Aranya is the daughter of the king of Immadia and knows that she has some special powers. When she is sent off to be a hostage due to her kingdoms fall, she quickly makes enemies that push her into realizing her real powers. As she becomes used to her powers, Aranya decides to rescue her fellow hostage, Zip. They decide to take on the tyrannical kingdom that had taken them hostage using Aranya’s powers. As they continue on their adventure, Aranya must try to learn all that she can about her growing powers and how they might shape her destiny and the fate of their island world.
I really wanted to love this novel, but I really struggled with it. It felt too much like a young adult novel that had matured to have appeal for an adult audience as well as a younger audience. I think that the plot has potential, but, for me, the story fell flat. There were definitely many positive aspects: many of the characters did have depth and there are a lot of charming dialogues. The dragonettes and the hidden magic that wasn’t fully revealed in this first novel were interesting. However, ultimately, I couldn’t empathize with Aranya because of the simpleness of her emotions, which made this novel less appealing. There was a lot of flying and a lot of fighting in the air and I just could not pay attention to the action. Unfortunately, this made the novel drag because I had to listen to it over and over again. There was also a lot of archaic language that seemed out of place. Beyond that, the romances irritated me because they had almost no foundation and resulted in a lot of immature and incomplete emotions. I didn’t they they were necessary beyond superficial crushes. While I really like young adult novels, I think this one just didn’t capture my imagination and seemed like it was for a younger audience.
The narration by Shiromi Arserio was acceptable. Her voice was in general was soft and soothing and potentially resulted in my inability to focus on the story. However, she did a fine job with voicing the different characters. The production quality was good. I would recommend this novel to young adult readers who like fantasy, magic, and dragons.
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