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One Good Dragon Deserves Another by Rachel…

One Good Dragon Deserves Another

by Rachel Aaron

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739233,051 (4.18)6



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This is the second book in the Heartstiker’s series and Julius learns the hard way that the only thing more dangerous than being a useless Heartstriker is being a useful one.
Hmmm…overall I can say I enjoyed this book but this might be a case of too much of a good thing?
There is so much going on in this book and you can tell the author had a lot of fun writing both the convoluted plotting of Estella and Bob and the interactions between Julius and his siblings and Marci and Ghost that she just couldn’t bring herself to edit any of it out, but she probably should have. This book could have easily been shortened by 100 or more pages and have been a tighter, better flowing story. It took me longer to read this book than it should have but I kept getting bored and struggled to get through some of the sections, and some felt more than a little repetitive. Seriously, sometimes less is more.
On the positive side, this is a fun universe and I love the Heartstriker clan in all of their dysfunctional glory so it was great to see them fleshed out more and to get a better feel for their family dynamic.
And as convoluted as all of the plots being plotted were, they all made sense and fit together where they felt they were supposed to and the resolutions that we got were satisfying.
Overall, I’m glad I read it and I did enjoy it, but the creeping bloat does concern me in regards to future books. ( )
  Kellswitch | Jul 19, 2018 |
One Good Dragon Deserves Another is the second in Rachel Aaron's Heartstriker series. It has been a month since Julius escaped his mother's plot and foiled the plans of a rival clan. He and Marci have a nice little supernatural pest control business that has been gradually gaining clients. Unfortunately it seems that no good deed goes unpunished. Now that Julius has proven himself useful, Bethesda has set him as center to her next plot when she sends out party invitations in his name to lure some clan enemies into the open. As if that's not bad enough two seers are battling for the fate of Heartstriker clan. How do you save your clan when your rival can see the future and knows every move you'll make?

This second installment takes the foundation laid by the first book and builds upon it. There is deeper world building as we're treated to more knowledge behind the return of magic, just how magic works in the world, what makes up spirits in particular and a better understanding of seer magic. We're given a glimpse into Algonquin's domain at the heart of the DFZ as well as finally meeting one of the famed dragon slayers. Further insight into the nature of dragons is revealed as are dragon family dynamics.

The story is more complex as it tracks three distinct plot threads and switches between at least five points of view. Julius and Marci both go on strong character arcs and it was great having both of their points of view. Both characters step up to the challenges in front of them and grow in surprising ways, beginning to live up to their potential. Marci begins developing deeper magical skills that she had barely scratched the surface of before. Julius is discovering that being "nice" is not the weakness his family thinks it is and gains some much needed confidence. In addition to the main stars, the story gives us dragons galore. Justin is back, though with a lesser role to play than in the first book. Bob is also back, pulling strings in the background as always. New to us is Amelia (yes A-melia), the eldest surviving child of Heartstriker clan. She is loads of fun! She would rather walk alternate planes and drink booze than have to deal with family politics. Can't say I blame her given how horrid Bethesda is to her children. Chelsie, mentioned in the first book, is given significantly more page time which was also great fun. The Shade of Heartstriker clan is fascinating with her preternatural fighting abilities. It all comes together for one big bang of a finale that was very satisfying.

I enjoyed the hell out of this book. Deeper world building, a more complicated plot, dragon family dynamics, heroics, action, a little romance - it was quite a page turner! I don't need a dragon seer to know that book three is in my near future. ( )
  Narilka | Aug 11, 2017 |
This is the second book in the Heartstrikers series. I really ended up enjoying it. There is great world-building, fun characters, and an interesting storyline.

I listened to this on audiobook and the audiobook narration is very well done. This is a book I would definitely recommend listening to on audiobook if you enjoy audiobooks.

I love the characters in this book. Julius is smart and conniving but just so nice to everyone; he is so nice that it makes him completely unpredictable to other dragons. Then there is Marci the extremely competent mage with a strange ghostly cat; watching Marci fangirl over dragons is hilarious.

There is a lot of action in here and some pretty awesome developments in the story as well. We get to spend a lot more time with Julius’s siblings. One of the highlights of the story is meeting Bethesda’s heir Amelia, she is hilarious and powerful and adds so much to the story.

We also get to learn a lot more about the Fangs of the Heartstriker and there is a lot of story development around Ghost, Marci’s ghostly cat. Pretty much everything that was awesome in the first book just gets more awesome in this one.

Overall this was a wonderful continuation of this series and I super excited about where the story is going. This series has been a wonderful balance of action, a twisty plot, great world-building, engaging characters, and awesome magic. I plan on continuing with the series and am really enjoying it! I would recommend to those who enjoy light-hearted urban fantasy. This series is a lot of fun to read! ( )
  krau0098 | Feb 9, 2017 |
I am loving this series so much, and it’s threatening to become on of my all time favorite urban fantasy series. It’s just so much fun! Plus, I love the world and characters. Rachel Aaron is doing truly wonderful work with this series.

One Good Dragon Deserves Another is the second book in the Heartstriker series, which begins with Nice Dragons Finish Last. I would suggest reading the books in order. Don’t worry, both books are fantastic! Forewarning, this review could involve spoilers from the first book.

Julius and Marci are struggling to make their magical pest control business profitable, when Julius is suddenly called upon by his terrifying dragon mother to participate in something he’s spent his entire life avoiding: dragon politics. His mother Bethesda is practically preening at the opportunity for a mating flight between her son Ian and a daughter of the Three Sisters, traditionally the most powerful dragon clan. Julius senses a trap, but there’s no way that Bethesda will listen to him. To make matters worse, Estella, the oldest daughter of the Three Sisters and a seer to boot has turned back up again. And she clearly wants to take out the Heartstriker clan.

Inventive world building is one of the reasons I love speculative fiction, and One Good dragon Deserves Another delivers it in spades. The setting is an intriguing mix of science fiction and fantasy, and I love the dystopian underbelly of the DFZ. This entry to the series builds on the foundations set by the first book, wonderfully expanding the world and making it more interesting than ever.

I continue to like both Julius and Marci. I really enjoy how Julius is just so continually kind and empathetic and how the narrative rewards him for this. The closest comparison I can give is Steven Universe, which is high praise indeed. Marci’s willing to be a bit more morally ambiguous, and One Good Dragon Deserves Another promises some interesting developments for her.

However, I would be remiss if I didn’t talk about how much I loved the supporting cast. Out of this installment’s new additions, Amelia was by far my favorite. She’s the oldest of Bethesda’s surviving children and so not what I expected. Chelsie also impressed me in this book. There were some interesting hints to her character in the first book, but she really gets the chance to shine here. Oh, and of course I love Bob, the Julius’s eccentric seer brother. This dysfunctional dragon family is simply marvelous.

I may have liked One Good Dragon Deserves Another even more than the first book. This self published series by Rachel Aaron is one of the best I’ve come across, and it shouldn’t be missed. I can’t wait to dive into book three!

Originally posted on - The Illustrated Page. ( )
  pwaites | Feb 1, 2017 |
As good as the first, looking forward to the next one. ( )
  oswallt | Nov 25, 2016 |
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After barely escaping the machinations of his terrifying mother, two all-knowing seers, and countless bloodthirsty siblings, the last thing Julius wants to see is another dragon. Unfortunately for him, the only thing more dangerous than being a useless Heartstriker is being a useful one. Now that he's got an in with the Three Sisters, Julius has become a key pawn in Bethesda the Heartstriker's gamble to put her clan on top.

Refusal to play along with his mother's plans means death, but there's more going on than even Bethesda knows. Heartstriker futures are disappearing, and Algonquin's dragon hunter is closing in. Now, with his most powerful family members dropping like flies, it's up to Julius to save the family that never respected him and prove once and for all that the world's worst dragon is the very best one to have on your side.
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