marycatelli (marycatelli) wrote,

Nice Dragons Finish Last

Nice Dragons Finish Last by Rachel Aaron

An alternate history contemporary fantasy -- an urban fantasy with overt magic -- well, magic came back. Dragons roam the earth once more. And Detroit was engulfed by a massive wave and taken over the Lady of the Lakes as the Detroit Free Zone.

The story opens with three low-lifes -- two muscle, one mage -- breaking into a house in search of a young woman. They trigger something, and she drives off, toward DFZ.

And then in the first chapter, we meet Julius, sleeping on his sister's couch in the DFZ. His mother is annoyed at how bad a dragon he is and has thrown him out of the home and sealed him into human form to get him to act properly so she doesn't have to dispose of him. His seer brother Bob, it turns out, had mailed him a cellphone four months earlier against this. And another brother Ian has a job for him. (Yes, he has a lot of siblings. His mother in fact is known as the Broodmare for her number of clutches.) And dragons are among the few things illegal in the DFZ.

The story involves the way seers interfere with each other's seeing the future, a desperate woman, an alligator shaman, a fight with lampreys, a charm to put a dragon to sleep, magic eaters, and more. DFZ is a nasty place -- and Julius doesn't want to be a good dragon.
Tags: fiction reviews: alternate world fantasy, fiction reviews: contemporary fantasy

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