Title: Derek Agons Slays a Dragon
Author: Samuel Tucker Young
Release Date: February 17, 2014
Publisher: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Characters: Derek is your average teenager, but a bit more intelligent and lonely, a “nerd” you could call him. His professor, Prometheus, is looking for a book that Derek has, but he has his own agenda. Then there’s this talking cat that seems to be deceiving not only Derek, but the whole animal kingdom in pursuit of this book, which he claims will help Derek kill a dragon and save the world. There is also a mythical girl, Tella, that Derek falls completely head over heels for. She’s a bit cold, but we find out why as the book goes on.
Plot: The title is slightly corny and it seems like a typical fantasy, but it is so not. Every time I thought I could figure out what happens, something totally unexpected, yet still realistic comes up. At first, Derek is kind of going with the flow, shell-shocked, not really believing that his mission is what will stop the earth from destruction. Then about halfway through, he realized how much is at stake. While he is mature in the beginning of the book, his choice will ultimately decide not only his fate, but every living thing’s.
Writing: This is really where the high rating comes from. While the plot is good and well-put together, it drags slightly through the middle and picks back up again. The writing, however, remains phenomenal throughout the entire novel. The characters seem typical – misunderstood teenaged boy, talking animals, evil professor – but the way Young describes and evolves them is what held my interest. I would recommend Derek Agons Slays a Dragon to lovers of young adult fantasy with a little bit of sci-fi and coming of age reality thrown in. Great characters and great writing.