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Heartless Lyn @ Great Imaginations

"All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost"

Seraphina (Seraphina, #1)

Seraphina (Seraphina, #1) - Rachel Hartman This review is one of the hardest reviews I have ever written. Seraphina is a book that compares to nothing else I have ever read. It is smart, beautiful, and rich with characters and inner redemption.Dragons have entered into the human world disguised as humans. Emotions are regarded like a disease, and order rules the world of the dragons. This culture is almost a mirror image of the values of the human world. Seraphina straddles both the human and dragon values due to her half human, half dragon blood. The most outstanding element of Seraphina was her inner dialog. Phina's mind is a weapon against and for her. Because of her dragon mother, the protagonist suffers from seizures, the side effect of her "maternal memories". To overcome her mental disorder, she learns how to find internal peace by mentally tending to the characters in her head. This is a fantasy-based problem, but the issue mirrors a growing trend in real life. Mental security and fitness is overlooked. However, if you watch the news right now, the festering problem is rearing its ugly head. Experiencing the anguish of the character created a strong sense of pride in the character's strength and resolve. The romance in the story was done with such care and tenderness as well. I enjoyed that we did not know right off who the love interest at page 1. I am sure some of you saw it coming, but I was shocked when the development blossomed with the story. Looking over the list of books, one common notion that I pick up on is the immediate attention to "This is the boy/girl" from early on in the story (sometimes, in the first chapter). Not here. As an audience, we watch Seraphina stand on her own without the assistance of romantic drive. Phina is fleshed out, her conflicts are addressed, and the relationship with the other major characters are well established before the main crush is thrown into the mix. I felt that I was watching a friend delve into her heart instead of a character fulfilling the obligatory intimate role that is required for every YA book.If you enjoy character development, then this story is a must. I grew overly fond for a majority of the players in the book. I am flat out shocked that I grew to admire Princess Glisselda. There was a whole slew of wonderful characters, but the Princess was one of the strongest people in the book. The typical blonde-headed flighty princess stepped up to the plate and shined as a female role. In fact, the entire story held the female parts in high regard. There are some wonderful reviews for Seraphina, and I believe that my own review would not hold water to them, but I can say that this book raised the bar for contemporary young adult fiction. I hope to see other books in this high caliber in the future.