The Warden’s Legacy by J.A. Giunta
For centuries, dragons fought to rule all. Driven by rage, corrupted by darkness, they were a scourge of fire and fury that would not abate. Only humans stood in their way, a brave few in each generation born with magic. Wardens, as they were called, used their power to shield others and fight back the dragon menace. But the dragons were cunning and used guile to destroy their enemy from within.
When the Wardens fell, the world fell with them.
Without their protectors, humanity was hunted to the ends of Eralle and eventually to extinction. Cities burned beneath the onslaught, with every forest in between. Trees wilted into ash and did not grow back. Food became scarce, life even scarcer. Older dragons chose to hibernate, while the rest were forced to scavenge or turn on one another.
All had seemed lost, until a young dragon came upon a human egg, one fashioned of Warden magic. Inside the wooden shell was a promise of renewal, a helpless infant boy that could coax trees to grow by touch. He carried within him not only a chance at redemption for all dragons but the gift of hope that would become…
…the Warden’s legacy.
When I got this book, I was immediately drawn in by the cover. It looked like it was going to be so good. Then I picked it up, and got even more excited because it’s not 1,000+ pages!
The Warden’s Legacy is a quick fantasy novel that reminded me of everything I loved about fantasy books as a child. It is serious, it is quick, it has a quest AND a chosen one. But more importantly the main narrator is a dragon!! It was set up for me to love it, and I’m so glad I got to read it when I did. I’ve been feeling a little anti-fantasy lately. Everytime I picked up a fantasy book I just put it down immediately. I thought I was burnt out on it, and that no story was speaking to me. In reality I just needed this book.
The plot moves in such a nice way that it never felt too fast or too slow, all of the creatures were described so well that I never had an issue trying to determine what was what. My favorite part of this book though, was the lessons. It really drives home the ideas of hope and balance. If one thing dies, it causes massive ripples that every other species can feel, which I feel is incredibly important to remember. Especially now while we kill the Earth as breakneck speeds.
The message of hope though as well was done so well. All of the beings had reason to give up hope. The trees died, food was scarce, and fights were rampant. But they all held out hope for something, and when the Warden was found they knew exactly what they were waiting for.
I know I just said the themes were to thing I liked the most in this book, but I do have to admit I loved that ending. I wish the process to the tree was a little bit more, but I thought it was very fitting.
Out of everything I liked in this book, I do have to give one criticism. The transition between chapters 9 and 10 was so jarring it took me out of the story for a little bit. It just felt like it needed more build up to that point, but honestly that was my only complaint. I do think it’s the type of transition, where someone newer to fantasy, or someone younger wouldn’t have a big deal with it. If I were younger and read that transition, I can tell you right now I would have gasped. It would have felt so dramatic, I wouldn’t be able to handle myself. But older me wished there was more interaction before it.
Would I Recommend?
YES. Please read this if you loved fantasy/adventure books as a child. It’ll remind you of them and why you fell in love. I will be pushing this to everyone I know for a while.