Book Review: The Dragon Within by Cindy Lyle

CoverTitle: The Dragon Within

Author: Cindy Lyle

Genre: Fantasy

Rating: 4 stars

Purchase: Amazon

Review copy provided by Enchanted Book Promotions in exchange for an honest review.

Deep within the mortal world of Eiddoril, war rages and the blood of innocents flows freely. Once protected by the four elements—Earth, Fire, Water and Air—Eiddoril was a peaceful, beautiful land. Now, after three hundred years of being ravaged by an evil lord and abandoned by their creators, the people and land are dying.

 In the kingdom of Gareth, an orphan girl is raised as one of the royal family. But when she begins to have vivid nightmares it leads her to question where she really came from. Her questions lead her to Fitch, an old magic user, who helps her discover a shocking truth. Karah is not human, but instead part of a long-forgotten race. Desiring answers, she sets out to uncover the secrets of her past, and defeat the enemy wreaking havoc across the land.

 In this fantasy tale, Karah must somehow find the strength to fulfill a destiny that has been forced upon her and discover the dragon within. She cannot fail. The future of creation depends on her.

The Dragon Within was a pleasant surprise. It was the first book I read by this talented author, Cindy Lyle, but it definitely won’t be the last.

For an indie published book, the interior formatting was amazing. The cover was all right, but I wasn’t too fond of the black borders on the top and bottom – if the cover got rid of those, the book would look more professional, if you ask me. Either way, the saying goes “don’t judge a book by its cover”, so on to the content.

Our main character, Karah, has been raised by the royal family of Gareth. She was an orphan they took in, and raised as a member of their own family. Karah has no idea where she came from, but she keeps having terrible nightmares about the Dark Lord. The only one she can turn to is Fitch, one of the last remaining users of magic. With her parents being silent about the matter and even arguing about her, her Dad convinced she’s a threat to Elric -the heir to the kingdom, and her brother – it’s up to Karah herself to find out the truth, with Fitch’s help.

What she finds out, twists her entire world to its core. She’s not even human, but she’s a member of a long-forgotten race, an immortal, humanity’s last hope against the Dark Lord. She has powers, magic, even though it’s said magic had disappeared centuries ago.

The story reminded me of Harry Potter, mostly because of the use of the “Dark Lord” title. It also has the same sense of adventure and heroism as the Harry Potter series, and Karah is some sort of chosen one. However, apart from that, it couldn’t be further away from those books, so you don’t have to worry about that at all when starting the book.

The setting is high fantasy, set in a mystical kingdom with kings, queens, sword fights, magic, dragons and more. There’s a lot of background story thrown in, especially at the start, which slows down the pace and didn’t always feel necessary. Action picks up at around chapter four though.

I liked Karah. She was a little passive at first, but managed to quickly adapt to changing situations, and she turned from passive to active over the course of the book. She was very brave and kind as well. The other characters were all right too. Elric was a little too stuck on the beliefs he was raised with, and he came across as quite arrogant at the start.

All in all, an excellent fantasy read. Dragons haven’t had entirely enough time in the picture, as one of the most ignored fantasy races, and any book about dragons, deserves a shot. This one adds great storytelling, an enjoyable plat, and likeable characters into the mix, so it’s definitely worth your time.


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