Talon (The Talon Saga #1)

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Talon (The Talon Saga #1)
Author(s)
Age Range
14+
Release Date
October 28, 2014
ISBN
978-0373211395
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In Julie Kagawa's groundbreaking modern fantasy series, dragons walk among us in human form. Long ago, dragons were hunted to near extinction by the Order of St. George, a legendary society of dragon slayers. Hiding in human form and growing their numbers in secret, the dragons of Talon have become strong and cunning, and they're positioned to take over the world with humans none the wiser. Ember and Dante Hill are the only sister and brother known to dragonkind. Trained to infiltrate society, Ember wants to live the teen experience and enjoy a summer of freedom before taking her destined place in Talon. But destiny is a matter of perspective, and a rogue dragon will soon challenge everything Ember has been taught. As Ember struggles to accept her future, she and her brother are hunted by the Order of St. George. Soldier Garret Xavier Sebastian has a mission to seek and destroy all dragons, and Talon's newest recruits in particular. But he cannot kill unless he is certain he has found his prey—and nothing is certain about Ember Hill. Faced with Ember's bravery, confidence and all-too-human desires, Garret begins to question everything that the Order has ingrained in him—and what he might be willing to give up to find the truth about dragons.

Editor reviews

2 reviews

Compelling and impossible to put down
(Updated: April 28, 2015)
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Julie Kagawa has always been one of my favorite authors. After reading The Iron Fey series (and the spin-offs), I knew I had to read more of her stories. I did doubt whether her other books could live up the The Iron Fey. After a small discussion with myself, I decided to give Talon a shot. It was worth it. It was worth it all.

Talon tells the story of Ember, and her brother Dante. They have to live in the human world as part of their training; they are dragons of Talon, destined to do great things for their race. Humans and dragons aren’t exactly best friends as the organization of St. George has been trying to kill all dragons since forever. Ember and Dante, now in human forms, try to fit in with the humans.

Ember and Dante have opposite personalities. Ember is stubborn, fierce and likes to be human now and then. Dante is calculating, patient and listens to everything thing Talon has to say. The fact that Ember and Dante are twins, is a good finding of Julie Kagawa. She shows how different brother and sister are, but also depicts their love and friendship perfectly. But, how deep does love for a sibling go?

Then meet Garret, human and part of St. George. Besides Ember, you also see part of the story from the POV of Garret. He, and his mate Tristan, are on a mission to find the sleeping dragon that’s implanted in Crescent Beach. Garret wants to find the dragon, kill it an complete the mission. Little does he know that the girl he’s falling in love with, Ember, is the one he has to kill.

And then we have the mysterious Riley. Bad guy, rogue and totally attractive. He was part of Talon once, but fled. He knows stuff about Talon that would creep both human and dragon out, and is now on the run from the Vipers; a group of dragons that will search dragons that have turned rogue. And Riley… is a rogue.

The story starts off slowly, while the reader is introduced to a whole new world of dragons, St. George assassins and wars that are rooted so deep, nobody actually remembers who started it. Ember and the other dragons are in human form, which is super interesting to read bout. She has dragon feelings for Riley, but human feelings for Garret. Julie Kagawa knows how to make love very complex and impossible – readers of The Iron Fey might know what I mean.

I don’t think there’s anything that I do not like about the book, or what I think Kagawa could’ve improved about the story. It’s compelling, exciting, adorable and there’s no way you can turn it down once you’ve opened it. The love triangle thing is a bit cliché, but since Ember is half dragon, half human, it’s believable. Her dragon side likes Riley, her human side likes Garret. Besides, I always root for these kind of things. Love triangles are part of young adult literature. And that’s okay with me, as long as the love triangle doesn’t become the thing that the story is about. It’s part of the story, that’s all.

If you loved The Iron Fey, you will love Talon. Readers who like urban fantasy will totally adore this book, as have I. This story will compel you into reading until the sun comes up. I cannot wait to get started on Rogue, the sequel to Talon!
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Kagawa does it again!
Overall rating 
 
4.3
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
First of all let me just say that I would read anything Julie Kagawa writes. I mean anything. I have fallen in love with all her previous series, so I was super pumped to read this new series! And it's about dragons. Dragons? Yes, dragons. And it is awesome.

What I loved:

Ember. Ms. Kagawa writes some amazing female leads, and Ember is no exception. She is head strong, loyal, brave, fights for what she believes in and she's a dragon. A dragon!

Garret. It's no secret that a few of Ms. Kagawa's previous book boys are some of my favorites and I can totally now put Garret right up there with them. He is tough, strong, yet we get to see a softer side of him in this book and I love it!

Riley. Okay, I'm not one for the love triangle, but *swoon*. Riley is a fellow dragon, a rogue dragon at that. I loved his character so much because you think he's a bad "boy" to begin with, but then you realize he's just trying to do what he thinks is right.

I really loved the character building in this book. Honestly, there wasn't a whole lot of world building. We only get to meet a few dragons, and some humans. I do feel like this was needed though because hopefully in following books we will have more world building, and even get to see Talon?! I hope so!

What left me wanting more:

As in true Julie Kagawa fashion, she leaves us hanging. Now I have to wait a full year for the next book. *le sigh* However, the book runs at a pretty good pace, I wasn't bored at all, so that's good. And since I've read her work before, I was prepared for the ending.

As I mentioned above, I really want more world building. Hopefully we can see more of the dragon world in the next book!

Overall a stellar first book of a new series. I love Julie Kagawa. I'm a total fangirl of hers and I can't wait to read what she has in store next!
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User reviews

2 reviews

Overall rating 
 
3.7
Plot 
 
3.5  (2)
Characters 
 
3.0  (2)
Writing Style 
 
4.5  (2)
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Page-turner with an intriguing plot
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
I hadn't read any of her works but I was intrigued by this. Dragons are cool no matter what but, dragons that can shift into people? Awesome!

Ember and her brother, Dante, have an interesting relationship and are quite different from each other. I find with twins that they're very similar or are so different that they feel unrelated. At first, Ember seems similar to her brother but as we get to know her, she develops into her own person. Her struggle for independence is something many teens can relate to. She was a strong female lead.

Garret, a dragon hunter who works for a military organisation, is very serious and works hard at his job. As he starts to develop feelings for Ember, he finds it hard to concentrate on his job. He was one of those strong and brooding types that have a soft side. His backstory was interesting and heightened the drama of what was currently happening.

The forbidden love between Ember and Garret, though you could see it coming, was very enjoyable. It was a real page-turner, I had to know what happened!

The plot was intriguing from the beginning. Dragon shifters in the modern world set in a beachside setting. The two warring organisations, Talon and the Order, are entertaining to read about. Especially, how the dragons fit into our modern world. Plus, it felt like it could develop into a conspiracy later on.
Good Points
Dragon shifters and dragon hunters.
Strong leads.
Good pacing and fun writing style.
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Interesting, But Nothing New
Overall rating 
 
3.3
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
MY THOUGHTS
Sigh. I'm very disappointed in this book.
I've given every Julie Kagawa book 5 stars. Her Blood of Eden series is the best vampire series I've ever read and I adore her Iron Fey series, so needless to say, I expected great things from this.

I should have known right off from the synopsis that this book would not be up to par as her other books. Yes, there's dragons, but what I get from the synopsis is that the book is about a dragon that can change into human form and a dragon hunter falling in love.

That's the book. It's the exact same plot as another book, Firelight, which I liked, but I'm not wild about. I admit, the fact that it's so similar to Firelight was a big reason why I had difficulty enjoying this book. I liked the world-building and I did find Talon and the Order interesting, and yeah, pretty much the plot was the main similarity between the two. I found everything else interesting.

The romance was what really caused me to distance myself. It was too insta-love for me and it took up too much of the book. I enjoy romance in book, but I prefer to hear about the dragons than the whole love-life. I also worry that the next book will introduce a love triangle.


IN CONCLUSION
I know I'm bashing on this, but I did like it. I loved the original ideas in this book, not so much on the plot. The romance of meh. I'm most disappointed because I had such high expectations.
If you enjoyed Firelight, you should read this book.
As for me, I will continue the series. Mostly because I am curious.
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