The kingdom of Goredd is populated by humans and by dragons who fold themselves into a human form. Though they live alongside each other, the peace between them is uneasy.
But when a member of the royal family is murdered, and the crime appears to have been committed by a dragon the peace and treaty between both worlds is seriously threatened...
Into this comes Seraphina, a gifted musician who joins the royal court as the assistant to the court composer. She is soon drawn into the murder investigation and, as she uncovers hints of a sinister plot to destroy the peace in Goredd for good, finds herself caught desperately in the middle of the tension.
For Seraphina hides a secret - the secret behind her musical gift - and if she is found out, her life is in serious danger...
Before I start my review, I would just like to fan-girl over this book for a moment. AHHHHHHH IT'S SO GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD!!! I LOVE IT SO MUCH!!!!! okay, I'm done, now onto the review!
The cover: I'm not a fan of the UK cover so I bought the US cover instead because it is beautiful. The black and white colour scheme with a red mist throughout it all is so visually appealing! And the pencil like drawing of the town and the dragon is immensely gorgeous, but it also gives readers a perfect sense of what the book is about before going into the story, which I love! This cover has got to be one of my all time favourite covers!
The characters: Like a lot of fantasy novels, this book has quite a large cast with multiple Lords and Ladies, this can get a bit confusing as I often found myself having to remind myself on who's who. However, the large amount of characters does make the story more realistic as you truly get to feel like you're part of the busy city and castle, and truthfully I found it easy to remember the main characters names, it was just the side characters that I had trouble with so it's all good! Seraphina was a very likeable main character and I loved the fact that we were able to get to know her through her own past as flashbacks are involved in this story, so we get a much wider picture of who Seraphina is and why she takes certain paths throughout the story. The side characters were also loveable with their own quirks and stories which gives the book so much more life! And of course we have the dragons, they are perfectly described and I kind of just want to be a dragon now.
The setting: I'm a sucker for settings like the ones in Seraphina! It is set mainly in a castle of sorts, with servants bustling about and the royal family socialising in fancy halls, what's not to love?! But the town outside is also amazing, with churches, inns, forests and taverns where not only humans love to go! I usually find it quite hard to imagine settings in fantasy novels but Seraphina gave such a detailed description that I found the images easily being made in my head.
The overall story: As I said at the start, I loved Seraphina so much! With such a unique premise, I'm surprised I found it so believable in a way, I understood all of Seraphina's worries about the dragon kind, even though they are mythical creatures and don't exist. I often find myself becoming bored with stories that are very descriptive but this was not the case with Seraphina, I was sucked into this richly described world full of dragons and royal families that I never felt myself getting bored with it! The romance in this story doesn't play a big part, it's only really mentioned after you get halfway through. However, I liked the fact that it didn't play a big part because we got to see Seraphina form a friendship with the love interest instead of diving head first into love. Plus, it gave me a chance to think about the main plot line more instead of just being interested with whether or not she will end up with him, and with a story full of suspicion, tension, heartbreak and deceits it wasn't hard to become interested with the plot line at all! There's so many more amazing things about this book but I shall leave them for you guys to find!
A beautifully written tale of dragons, friendship, love and politics, Seraphina easily gets a 5 out of 5 stars from me! I recommend this book to anyone and everyone!