To say I was disappointed with this book would be a huge understatement. I confess I haven't read anything by Kagawa, but all my friends absolutely love her. She is an amazing writer, auto-buy list, etc. I did not see it here at all.
Talon was like every other average YA book out there, and I'm sick and tired of those. We have:
- Evil dragon organization (caricature evil, because I really don't see why they should have taken it to that extreme. It basically amounted to 'because they can')
- Human dragon slayer organization (because someone has to kill those evil, unfeeling murderous, monsters. Because there is no way they could ACTUALLY be like people, nuh-uh, no way.)
- Mc is a twin. Twins are basically impossible in dragons. So of course she is special.
- Love triangle. (because it wouldn't be YA if it didn't have a love triangle.)
- Between the leader of the dragon rebellion and the 'Perfect Soldier' from St. George (the dragonslayers). It couldn't be between simple unimportant people. That would be scandalous.
The love triangle takes precedence over a good chunk of the book with enough little tidbits of the plot to keep things somewhat moving. The bare minimum of what could still be called moving.
There was basically no world building here. We are only told dragons exist, they are evil, and St. George has been killing them since forever and the feud has been going on ever since. That's it.
My main issue with this book is that I just don't get it. I don't get the conflict. It all seems nonsensical to me. It's an over simplified, you killed me, I killed you and just an endless cycle from there.
No one has called out either organization on their bullshit. NO ONE. With the way Talon operates I just find that incredibly hard to believe. Yes there were some people who felt discontent but no one did anything till this Riley guy finally did something, and it's not like he is actively fighting against Talon either. He is just taking people out of Talon and hoping to stay alive while having Talon AND St. George after him.
St. George doesn't give a shit if there is a silly excuse of a rebellion going on. They are dragons. Dragons are bad. Kill Dragons. Again, nobody questions ANYTHING.
Every single person in this book was a complete mindless sheep. It was disgusting. Only Garret (the St. George dude) and Ember (our special MC) questioned things and that was in the last like 10% of the book.
Speaking of Ember's special status I didn't get it either. Yes they are twins which doesn't happen often, and yes she is a female so she is valued, but she is average at best (which I have nothing against, it's actually kinda nice), but my problem is that everyone acted like she was the last pepsi in the desert. I just don't get it. And for Talon to give her the assignation that they did? Makes even LESS sense. That was a huge oversight for them when they are supposed to be this incredibly tightly controlled organization.
Also, everyone and their mother knew that Ember was being placed in Crescent Beach. EVERYONE. And yet, no one knew about her twin Dante? Wtf? Why the emphasis only on Ember?
There might be this huge incredible reveal in the next books that could possibly make sense of everything here, but in my opinion it was just handled badly. If that's the case, good for the people that will be keeping up with this series, because I sure as hell won't.