Dragon Wizard, by Andrew Swann

Dragon Wizard, by Andrew Swann book coverGenre: Fantasy
Publisher: Daw Books
Published: 2016
Reviewer Rating: four stars
Book Review by Joshua Palmatier

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This is the third book in this series, and while it does tie up the main plot threads, I’m hoping it’s not the last. I’d like to see more. I guess we’ll have to wait and see. And yes, that is a blurb on the front cover of the book from me, part of the review I wrote for the second book in this series. *grin*

Premise: Princess Frank and Dragon Prince Lucille are celebrating their one year anniversary, with representatives from all of the known world in attendance. But during the ceremonies, a magical attack against the Dragon Prince kills the prince of Elfland, along with several other dignitaries, while forcing Lucille back into her own body.

Unfortunately, Frank is still trapped in the princess’ body as well, except he can’t control it and he can’t communicate with anyone. As far as everyone is concerned, he’s switched places with Lucille and taken over the dragon’s body… except the dragon is rampaging across the lands, attacking towns and generally taking the already escalating tensions between the nations toward outright war.

Not to mention the Elf-King isn’t particularly happy that his son is dead. He gives Lucille 24 hours to bring him the person responsible for his son’s death, or he’ll unleash both the Winter Court and the Summer Court of the Elves on human lands.

I’ll be the first to admit that the first few chapters of this book are a little rocky, but once we get to the body switching–the hallmark of this series–then things settle in and the writing smooths out tremendously. The initial problem of how Frank is going to be able to do anything when he’s trapped in Lucille’s skull with no ability to communicate or control anything is interesting and presents a whole new slew of problems, yet still remains true to the body-switching theme.

And S. Andrew Swann takes that initial set-up of two souls in one body and plays with it tremendously well. I really liked how the story gets more and more complicated with the two trapped int he same body. (I’m trying not to spoil any of the surprises here, because they were all good and all made sense.) Of course, this leaves the question of who exactly is in the dragon’s body. But I’ll leave that to everyone to find out by reading the book.

The usual good romp through fantasy land here, with some new twists and turns that include both the dragon and the wizard featured in the first book. Nearly all of the plot threads of the first two books are wrapped up here, and everyone ends up exactly where they should be by the end. If this is the last book (and again, I hope it isn’t), then it was an extremely satisfying ride. For some light, humorous, entertaining reading–with some darker points along the way–I’d definitely recommend this series.

Joshua Palmatier/Benjamin Tate

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