I just finished A Dragon's Path to Ascension, by J.C. Harker. This is an epic fantasy short story and served as my introduction to the Dragons Reborn series. Tharia is a dragon, living in seclusion in human form. Her species undergoes something called the Ascension, which affords them great power, but also involves taking the life of another dragon. Initially, Tharia avoids working towards the Ascension, choosing to live a more simplistic and peaceful life. This idyllic lifestyle is soon threatened as she runs into hunters and other dragons. She then must reconsider going through the Ascension.
I absolutely loved this story! It captured my interest right away. Ms. Harker does an excellent job with world-building. The land of Uutta Toivoa sounds fascinating. World-building, for me, is what makes or breaks a fantasy series. Ms. Harker made me feel like I was in Uutta Toivoa, watching the events unfold. The descriptions of Tharia and her powers were very detailed. I also enjoyed learning about her dragonling, and the bond that they shared. I wish this bond could have been discussed more during the story, and that Dru in general had more of a role.
The author's writing style appealed to me, although at times I had some difficulty understanding the events unfolding. It was a little vague at times, such as when we learned about Tharia's siblings . The story was well edited and evenly paced. I felt that Tharia was a well developed and interesting main character. I liked her very much. I wish that we had learned a bit more about some of the other characters in the story, such as Tharia's family, as well as Kaima, although this is of course difficult with a short story.
The ending surprised me! It was completely unexpected. After the battle, however, I felt that the last few pages were a little anticlimactic. I initially thought the book was done when the battle was finished, and was surprised to turn the page to find a whole separate section. Perhaps this could have served as the beginning of the next book, although I understand why the author included it her, given the results of the battle for Ascension.
All in all, I enjoyed this story from the Dragons Reborn series. It hooked me immediately, and kept me engaged until the end. I would definitely recommend this book to others, and will be reading the other books in the series when I get a chance!
My Review: 5 stars