Smoke (The Slayer Chronicles Book 1)

spaceVal St. Crowe's book "Smoke (The Slayer Chronicles Book 1)" is the first in a planned series about protagonist Clarke, a dragon slayer; Clarke has an ethical code, she'll only kill rogure dragons, the ones that either never had a human half or have 'lost' their human side and are now simply killing machines. St. Crowe developed her characters slowly, revealing tidbits about their personalities as the first story progresses, although physical descriptions are somewhat given... the slow reveal of their various flaws and strengths actually is similar to how a person may discover traits in those they meet outside of a books pages, and is fairly realistic. However, there is definitely room for the characters to grow into full three dimensional characters. The actual premise of the story was intriguing and held a lot of promise for a very entertaining story. The world created by St. Crowe is interesting, albeit one this reader could not bring herself to believe in.
spaceThe problem this reader had most of all was that of the dragons needing to find a body of water to shift in. This reader felt a water dragon would likely use a body of water, but other dragons, such as water, fire, air and earth types, this reader felt, would likely have difficulties in a body of water... earth mixed with water becomes mud just as water extinguishes fire, so why would an earth dragon or a fire breathing dragon shift inside of a body of water? It does not make logical sense to me, and even fiction must have a form of logic. Secondly, the size of dragons in St. Crowe's world directly oppose most myths and what this reader believes about dragons; in dragon form, St. Crowe's dragons are roughly the size of a horse or slightly larger than their human form, they can fit inside of a horse's stall... this reader chooses to believe the majority of dragons are enormous in size, with a few forms possibly being smaller.
spaceSome grammar, spelling and punctuation errors were found as well as several spots where repetitive words were found - like 'the the' or something similar, in a sentence. There was a lot of dialogue in the story, much of it continual and repeated, some believable and some stilted and unnatrual sounding. St. Crowe did create a sensual heat between the characters Clarke and Logan - a gargoyle - and Clarke and Naelen - a dragon shifter, but no full sex scenes so this can be classified as a romance without erotica, in this reader's opinion. The story did not quite live up to the promise, in this reader's view, so she'll likely not continue with the series. However, she also will not withhold a recommendation, either. ** Review originally posted to Amazon reviews on May 29, 2017 and Goodreads on the same date. **


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