Review: Dragon Your Bones by Tatiana Obey

Dragon Your Bones by Tatiana Obey


Jen reviews Dragon Your Bones, the second book in Tatiana Obey‘s duology, A Forging Age.

I was lucky enough to get the first book of this duology, Bones to the Wind, in my batch for the SPFBO contest last summer. It was a fun story, featuring one of the more unique worlds that I have gotten to explore, and I was pretty stoked to continue with this series. Thank you to Tatiana Obey for the e-copy and for thinking of me for the follow-up book. Also huge apologies for the very long delay in getting this review out.

This review was written as part of the Wyrd & Wonder Month hosted by amazing ladies, check out all the content on Twitter!

Wyrd and Wonder Month 2023. Artwork by Tithi Luadthong.
Artwork by Tithi Luadthong
About the Book
Series: A Forging Age #2 (duology)
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: Self-Published
Date of Publishing: August 31, 2023
Trigger Warnings: Death, child abuse, eating disorders, homophobia
Page count: 563
Book Blurb
Dragon Your Bones by Tatiana Obey

Rasia is determined to slay a dragon for her Forging, a trial each child must succeed to come of age. All she needs to do is find the dragon’s den, slay the winged bastard, and haul it home before the deadline ends. Not so easy. But Rasia has Kai on her team—who may or may not have some secrets up his shroud.

Nico needs to prepare for the bloodrites, a ritual ceremony as bloody as the name. If she succeeds, she’ll earn the title of Ohan, but first she’ll have to dodge assassins and hunt whomever placed the hit on her head and hopefully kill them before they kill her.

In the Grankull, coming of age isn’t easy. There are always greater dragons to slay.

Quote of the Book
Quote Background


“Scrap this. If the Elder won’t grant her their magic, then she’ll take it instead. Nico sprinted toward the blazing irises. Sometimes, you can’t wait to be chosen. You choose yourself. Nico dove into the fire. A burst of white consumed her. Out of the radiance came color and images. She watched her life flash before her, and a presence watched it all unfold beside her.”

Song of the Book

Elastic Heart by Written by Wolves

I had a tough time finding a song for this story. Nothing was quite right to the message or the pacing. I finally had to settle on something that mostly worked for both or we’d be waiting for another few months for this review.

I thought of Elastic Heart as a song about the hard knocks that life brings, and trying to not allow yourself to be a casualty of them, rather than the relationship between a couple – which is likely the real meaning behind the lyrics.

Review


Dragon Your Bones picks up directly after the first book with Rasia, Kai, and their group hunting their injured Dragon, and Nico, and co. after a small side-trip to rescue the other kids, returning to the Grankull to complete their Forging.

World

Still one of the most creative worlds – it’s a desert world where the people live around the bones of a once great dragon. The dragon bones have magic that allows the soil to grow things.

The drop-in style and terminology are a lot easier to envision now we have the first book under our belts. Also, the focus this time around is in and around the Grandkull, the politics and how things are run, etc. with more of the day-to-day survival in this story.

I really enjoy how alive this world feels – the conversations, the family dynamics – it’s noisy and natural and when you put the book down, it feels just like having a houseful of company that suddenly leaves after Thanksgiving.

Characters

The set-up is similar to the first book with the alternating POVs between Kai, Rasia, and Nico settling into longer bouts of each as the story progresses.

Nico plans to bring the dragon graveyard to the Grankull. Her hope is that it will unite the clans, the tents, and the scavengers – giving them all a safe place to live. But when the title of Ohan slips through her fingers, she has to find a new way to achieve what she set out to do.

Rasia in some ways, doesn’t change much, she is still confident, and jumps in, ready to tackle anyone or thing that she doesn’t agree with on a moment’s notice. But she does learn to stop and think about things, after the fact, even going so far as to admit when she was wrong.

Kai felt like he went backward for a time. All that self-worth he gained, was gone in an instant on his return to the Granskull, under the eyes of all who always thought he had no worth. Totally understandable, but broke my heart, and frustrated me all at once. Because I wanted him to prove to those people what he had gained without them there to hold him back.

I did miss Zephyr – he is in this book but I just wanted more of him.

While a lot of the story involves Nico, and her plans to unite the tribes, I felt the heart of the story belonged to Rasia and Kai. They’re the driving force behind this series. Their relationship and everything to do with it is what kept me turning the pages. That’s not to say Nico doesn’t have an engaging story. She does. But, for me, as much as I loved the political power plays in her character arc, so much of that part of the story was in the background, along with her relationships. So, while I enjoyed her chapters, it was Rasia, and her unpredictable fiery personality, that always kept me coming back. Also, Kai, because everyone loves an underdog and I wanted him to succeed.

The magic is of the softer, on-the-fly variety. But it feels very mystical and cool.

The story

Events move fast in these books, covering a lot of ground in a short amount of time. A small complaint I had was that a lot of things happen off-screen and we’re told about them later (Nico sending messages to other clans to stop assassins attempting. Nico picking up the children in the desert so all the kids make it home).

But that said, the main focus of these stories is the characters – the relationships and their growth. So, while the setting and everything around that part of the story is cool as heck, and you can’t help but want more, it’s not really as important as the rest. More than anything else, this story/series is still a coming to an age story. It’s an exploration of the journey into adulthood, where these kids/young adults are coming to terms with themselves, their place in society, and their loved ones.

Age lets me appreciate their journey because I recognize their struggles from my own life, my children’s, and others around me, and I love these characters all the more for it.

Dragon Your Bones is a coming-of-age story that is willing to do and be, something different. It isn’t afraid to talk about life, sex, and everything in between – the good and the bad. And it manages to have a lot of fun while doing so. I’ve enjoyed this series a lot.

Our Judgement
Let Their Deeds Be Noted - 4 Crowns

If you don’t want to miss any of our posts, please consider signing up to our monthly newsletter or follow us on social media:

You can also support us on Ko-fi so we can keep maintaining the Asylum!