Book Review: The Marauders, the Daughter, and the Dragon

Azure Brine can’t talk politics with her father without wanting to smack her head against the wall. His blatant racism towards anyone not-human has stretched her patience, and their once-close relationship, beyond its limits. And it’s only gotten worse since Governor Pratt rose to power.

But Azure soon realizes the bigoted governor has something truly terrible planned for the Legion of Isles, worse than anything she could have imagined. With her father in danger, and only a foul mouthed bird at her side, Azure sets out on a journey across the ocean to save him. And nothing – not magic, monsters, talking skeletons or even a whole band of marauders – will stop her.

The dragon might be a problem, though.

The Marauders, the Daughter, and the Dragon
by K.R.R. Lockhaven

eBook, 550 pages
August 20, 2022
Published by by Shadow Spark Publishing
Fantasy | Adventure | Pirates | Dragons | Butt Jokes | Sarcastic Birds

Find this book on: Amazon CA | Goodreads

Before we start, as with every author-submitted review, I want to send a huge thank you to the author, for sending me a copy of this book! Receiving books like this and getting to share them with everyone is my favourite part of doing reviews on this little blog, and I so appreciate you giving me the opportunity.

All opinions and terrible jokes are my own!

Take two parts swashbuckling pirates, one part mystical hijinks, three parts daring sword fights, add a heaping dash of the magic of friendship, and you’ll get The Marauders, the Daughter, and the Dragon: the fun, light, warms-the-cockles-of-your-cynical-heart story that wants to take you on a daring quest and won’t take no for an answer.

Everything about this book was just plain fun. The setting was a wide open world just waiting to be explored, and managed to be full of life and wonder while still keeping an aura of mystery that I adored.

The titular daughter, Azure, was a classic, confident heroine with a heart filled with determination and compassion for everyone she meets – even if she doesn’t like or agree with them, which is something I can very much appreciate. I really felt for her, fighting both for and against her father as they clash between ideals; something I think most of us can relate to.

She also has a best friend who’s a smart-assed, foul mouthed robin, and if that doesn’t win you over, nothing will.

I won’t say too much more about the other characters to avoid spoilers, but I pretty much adored every named character that wasn’t the laughably evil governor. The dragon was my favourite character by far, but then I’m an absolute sucker for sarcastic assholes with a hidden heart of gold. And if you ever have to choose a band of characters to party with, I’d choose these Marauders every time.

If I had to change anything, I do wish that some of the scenes with the Marauders had been trimmed down just a bit, or at least given more weight in the overall story. There were times when the music and detours and moments of fun ended up breaking the tension where it should have been building up.

It didn’t help that Governor Pratt felt just a bit too close to a classic Saturday morning cartoon bad guy to be a genuine threat. The book isn’t exactly subtle with it’s message here or the possible comparisons that could be made to real-world people (and it’s honestly pretty enjoyable for that reason alone) but with so much moustache twirling villainy on display, it’s a bit unbelievable that so many people were taken in by his speeches.

Then again…

But ultimately, that’s just part of the fun: a band of heroes, a daring rescue, and a bad guy you absolutely love to hate. And in the end, what more do you need for the perfect adventure? It’s a return to the kind of iconic, evil bad guys that made my childhood so enjoyable, and it was an absolute treat to get to experience it all over again.

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The Marauders, the Daughter, and the Dragon is a fun and lighthearted story that balances heavy messages with plenty of magic, humour, and heart without ever taking itself too seriously.

It’s just the right amount of cheesy to fill you up and still leave you wanting more, and there’s a whole series behind this story, so I’m hopeful I’ll get see more of Azure and the crew again before too long. There are definitely more mysteries to be explored in the Legion of Isles and beyond.

I definitely recommend this for anyone looking for a good old fashioned adventure. Dragons included!

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