MP! Review: the Talon Saga is fast-paced, explosive and still has room to be sweet

The Talon Saga tells the story of Ember, a dragon disguised as a human as she tries to find where she belongs between the harsh rules and questionable behaviour of the organisation she was raised by, Talon, and the human world she has grown all too fond of. With a slice of complicated romance, a generous helping of rule breaking, and a whole load of fire power, ‘Talon’ and its sequel ‘Rogue’ has a promising premise.

And it delivers.

Firstly, the characters are well developed and believable, with very few instances of stereotypical ‘baddies’ popping up, which can be a weak point for novels like this. Julie Kagawa makes sure her villains are a little more complex than your standard Hollywood bad guy, veiling their motivations and true intentions with layers of secrecy.

Ember, as well, shies away from being the clichéd heroine. Though she is tough as nails, loyal and caring, she comes with a rebellious streak and tendency to be impulsive, making her character well balanced between negatives and positives – another weak spot that can crop up in heroes.

Not only does Kagawa give her protagonist a defined set of characteristics and a real sense of personality, but she is careful to mark each of her characters with uniqueness and their own defining traits. This, of course, make the love triangle aspect of the novel that much more difficult for readers: Garrett and Riley, both vying for Ember’s attention, are two very different people and offer Ember two very different relationships. Kagawa really knows how to make her readers squirm.

Though at times the plot can feel a little predictable, and the love triangle may seem clichéd or overused to some readers, tired of seeing this kind of romance, both ‘Talon’ and ‘Rogue’ entertain. They are fast-paced, hammering out plot point after plot point, and still warm. Kagawa is careful to take the time to develop the relationships in both books, making readers fall in love with characters and have a real soft spot for a book that could have easily been cold and entirely action-focused.

Over all, Kagawa’s series shows no signs of slowing down, and if the first two books are anything to go by, Soldier’, released next year, is set to be an explosive, must-read.

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Written by Laura Fulton

Book Channel Editor at MaxPop! Have a thing for the sea and pretty paperbacks. Saved by amazing grace.

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