Adventure, Children's fiction, Fantasy

A Darkness of Dragons (Songs of Magic #1) by S.A. Patrick

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This is a very promising first book in a series for children, maybe one of the better ones I have tried in the last few years. I could appreciate it as an adult and also felt that the pieces would work well for children as well.
The story leans a lot on the lore of the Pied Piper and the ‘magic’ that he wields. Our story begins with one piper trying to rid a town of giant rats. He ends up using a forbidden song. On top of various other things, the latter part leads our protagonist into very hot water. He is a good boy who had many dreams but wanted to use his natural piping skills for the best reasons. His punishment coincides with the revenge of the dragons.
The combination of events has him on a chase to uncover some truths, save his skin and maybe help others in the process. He is assisted by some unique people. There is a vein of humour running through the entire book. The jokes are not very obvious but not too subtle to escape the attention of certain discerning children.
The characters were all realistic. Some of them lied, made mistakes, but they all learn and grow and try to do better whenever they realise what they were doing. It is not done in a preachy way.
I read this book in one sitting because I wanted to see where the story went. There were some parts that I expected and some others that I didn’t. There was also one part that I thought I saw coming, was misdirected only to find out that I was right the first time. None of which bothered me much.
I would like to continue with the series if I get the chance.
I received an ARC thanks to NetGalley and the publishers but the review is entirely based on my own reading experience.

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