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Cecilia Holland - Dragon Heart (2015)

Not quite YA, but only one brief step beyond.

Castle Ocean is the seat of the little kingdom under threat from the great Empire. The king is dead, the eldest son has not been crowned, the queen is being forced to marry the Emperor's brother. The five children of Castle Ocean's royal family face their different fates, alongside the Emperor's brother and his two sons, some of the imperial soldiers, and some of the folk of the town. The viewpoint switches from person to person to tell this tale with Holland's customary clarity and economy of phrase. There is a dragon, and Castle Ocean may itself be a monster.

I really enjoyed reading this. But there is not a happy ending.

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Caroline M

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