I read and enjoyed the books in the Song of Fire and Ice series, and let’s face it; very few authors are as ruthless as Mr. Martin when it comes to killing off characters in the most gruesome ways. When I saw this book at the Dollar Store (sorry Mr. Martin, sad for you – good for me), despite my self-imposed book buying ban I had to pick it up to see what Mr. Martin considers YA fiction.
THE ICE DRAGON by George R.R. Martin
Adara was a winter child, born during the worst winter anyone could remember. Unfortunately, her mother died in childbirth – no one knows if that, the storm or her father’s (albeit) hidden blame resulted in her not ever feeling cold. When other children tired of their winter games and ran inside for warmth Adara went alone to build her ice castle. It was there she first met the Ice Dragon of legend. No one had ever seen it other than from afar but after several winters Adara not only touched it but also rode on it’s back. They developed a unique friendship out of mutual loneliness.
As war encroaches ever closer on her village neighbours and friends are leaving. Even Adara’s uncle, a King’s Dragon Master, warned her father to leave but he was a stubborn man. When it was too late to leave and the only thing that could save them was Adara’s dragon it became a question of which friend was willing to sacrifice more for the other.
While not totally without war, bloodshed and death Mr. Martin has definitely toned it down for the younger audience intended to read The Ice Dragon. What there is, I would consider age appropriate and not graphic - happening “off page”. He does give his young reader a page turning story and a poignant lesson about what it means to be a friend. An added bonus is the wonderful illustrations.
I enjoyed the book and am glad I “splurged” and picked it up.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR (from the book jacket)
Mr. Martin is a six time Hugo and two-time Nebula Award winner, is the author of the most wildly acclaimed and anticipated series in recent history, A Song of Ice and Fire, the basis for HBO’s show Game of Thrones. Time magazine named him “One of the most influential people of 2011”. He currently resides in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR (from the book jacket)
Luis Royo is a prolific Spanish artist best known for his lush fantasy illustrations. More than thirty books of his collected art have been published, including “Women, Dead Moon”, and the “Malefic Time” series. Royo’s artwork is featured in Spectrum 3 and has been exhibited in Barcelona, Madrid, Milan, New York, Seattle and St. Petersburg.