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Fly Like a Dragon

Mandy C. would be totally on board having a dragon as a companion, but wouldn't really appreciate the kidnapping or torture that might come as a result.

Fly Like a Dragon

BOOK REPORT for Scorched by Mari Mancusi

Cover Story: Hot Mess
BFF Charm: Yay
Swoonworthy Scale: 6
Talky Talk: He Said, She Said, He Said
Bonus Factor: Dragons, Superpowers
Anti-bonus Factor: Love Triangle
Relationship Status: Bonded Pair

Cover Story: Hot Mess

Someone please alert that woman that while she's standing there looking fierce, her dragon seems to be destroying things behind her

The Deal:

Trinity Foxx is a pretty typical teenager, at least on the surface. Look a little deeper and you'll see an orphan who struggles daily to keep her grandfather and herself afloat, whether it be paying the bills with money from after school jobs or taking over the managerial duties of her grandfather's (failing) fossil museum.

When her grandfather gets involved in yet another crazy scheme—this time, spending the money that was supposed to go to save the museum on the world's last surviving dragon egg—Trinity is about to give up. Until the military men in the big black SUV and the strange, pale guy with futuristic gadgets show up, that is, and Trinity realizes that her grandfather's crazy might not be so crazy after all.

Prefer a visual explanation? Check out the Scorched book trailer, below:


(Dun-dun-DUN!)

BFF Charm: Yay

Even with the ridiculous name, Trinity is an awesome girl. She's dedicated and loyal, and keeps her wits about her when she's forced into situations that drastically change her life and her view of reality. Plus, she's "fire kissed," which means she's been chosen by a dragon to become paired with, and dragons are freaking sweet. I'd hope that by being BFFs, I'd get to ride it on occasion.

Swoonworthy Scale: 6

Being on the run from a sketchy military organization, "protected by" (i.e. being held prisoner) by a cult-like organization and often not being able to figure out which one of a pair of twin brothers you're talking to would take a toll on anyone's love life, but Trinity is a teenage girl, so she makes a valiant attempt at engaging in swoonage.

Connor and Caleb, the twin brothers who are both, at different times, savior and captor, are similar in that they're both dedicated to their respective causes but are able to make adjustments when certain truths are revealed, but different in the manner in which they carry out their tasks, at least at the beginning of the book when Connor is more pragmatic and Caleb is more volatile. They're both sweet, genuine guys (plus they're hot, natch) and by the end of the book, their personalities kind of meet in the middle. I don't envy Trinity at the eventuality of having to choose between the two. (I'm not entirely sure that this is the start of a series, but it has the feel of one.)

Talky Talk: He Said, She Said, He Said

In Scorched, we hear the thoughts of and see through the eyes of all three of the main characters (Trinity, Connor and Caleb.) Mari Mancusi does a great job of differentiating between the boys and Trinity, but as the twins' characters progress, it gets a bit harder to tell who's who by the end unless we're specifically told. On the flip side, I do appreciate an author who can create a new lexicon (slang, curses, etc.) without it feeling completely foreign and confusing.

Bonus Factor: Dragons

Seriously, guys. There are not many creatures, fantastical or real, that are cooler than dragons, and the dragons in Scorched are some of the best I've read about. They're intelligent, loyal, playful and gorgeous (massive) creatures who can breathe fire and fly—and will sometimes take you on rides. Sure, they can be dangerous, but the pros totally outweighs the cons in this case.

Bonus Factor: Superpowers

None of the characters can fly (without the aid of dragons) or Hulk-out when they get angry, but certain individuals in Scorched have something called the "spark," which gives them some pretty awesome mind powers. And on occasion, those are more helpful than the ability to punch through walls.

Anti-bonus Factor: Love Triangle

The Trinity/Connor/Caleb business is not the worst example of a love triangle I've ever read, but there's serious foreshadowing of a situation that could end badly, depending upon which twin's team you're on.

Casting Call:

Isabelle Fuhrman as Trinity

My initial thought was to cast Anna Kendrick as Trinity, since the girl on the cover sort of looks like her, and Anna would rock the role (I might just have Anna on the brain), but I should really try to get away from casting people in their late 20s as 16-year-olds. So, I went with Isabelle Fuhrman, who actually is 16, and a pretty fierce actress in her own right.

Graham Phillips as Connor and Caleb

The only real physical difference between Connor and Caleb is the color of their eyes, which could easily be changed by using contacts, and we all know (or should know) how well one person can play different characters, so I'm choosing Graham Phillips to play both twins. I can’t remember ever seeing him in anything, but I’m giving him the benefit of the doubt that he could play both personalities, plus, with his coloring, he'd look good in Connor/Caleb's typical attire of dark T-shirts and jeans.

Christopher Lloyd as Grandpa Foxx

Grandpa is an absent-minded professor sort with an inner fire that comes out when necessary. I think Christopher would be perfect in the role. (I mean, he’s done it before ...) Plus, he's kind of adorable, in a grandpa sort of way.

Relationship Status: Bonded Pair

Dragons, mind powers, kickass heroine and hot twins? Book, you had me at hello. Regardless of how many times I complain about series, I'm actually really hoping you turn into one so that we can have more adventures together. Plus, I still want that dragon ride.

FTC Full Disclosure: I received a free review copy from Sourcebooks Fire. I received neither snickerdoodles nor money for this review (dammit!). Scorched will be available Sept. 3.

Mandy Curtis's photo About the Author: Mandy is a small town girl living in a nerdy world, or—if you want to get literal—an editor/writer living in Austin, TX. In addition to yearning for YA books—the more dystopian or fantastical, the better—she can also be found swooning over superheroes, dreaming of The Doctor and grinning at GIFs.
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