Thursday, September 8, 2011
Blood of the Dragon
Author: Samantha Warren
How long it's been on sale: 4 Months
Current price: $3.99
Marketing: Giveaways on blog & Goodreads, Twitter, Facebook, Passive Promotion (posting on forums, etc), Bookmarks, Blog
Total sold so far: 15
Link to book on Amazon: Blood of the Dragon
Conquered and enslaved, the dragons of Layr live in fear. Their allies are banished, declared outlaws and forced out of human society. Lana, daughter of dragon keepers, is discontented with her mundane existence at the hatchery and the sometimes violent treatment of the dragons in her care. The birth of a rare dragon, descendant of the long-defeated dragon king, will force her to step outside herself and become the hatchling's protector. With the help of her best friend Bolgor, Bellithana the Gypsy, and a Hidden named Prigol, the group seeks to bring an end to the tyranny that has reigned for more than three centuries. Can Lana and her friends bring freedom to the oppressed land? Or will the wicked Princess Slyvania destroy not only Lana's hard won maturity, but the lives of both her and her new friends as well?
First 300 Words:
The dirt and sand along the riverbank glistened darkly in the fading light. The water held a sickly red tinge as the battle waned. Victims of the slaughter lay strewn across the blood-soaked field. Screams of pain and fear echoed through the darkening sky. An enormous red beast struggled feebly, his left wing crushed beneath his massive weight. Aron, leader of the human army, strode haughtily up to the creature and propped a plated boot on its neck.
"Sigurd, king of the dragons." The words shot from the man's mouth like venom. "How does it feel to know you have failed? All your worthless struggles, your pathetic attempts at retaining your freedom; all for naught. You're pathetic."
At that, Aron spat in the fallen king's face. Sigurd paid no attention to the man. His one remaining eye was focused on a scene across the field. He lowed hauntingly as he watched his beloved Silene being shackled, forever imprisoned by the wretched conquerors. His trusted friend and captain, Roland, lay torn at her side. Sigurd knew the man would not have allowed such an atrocity to happen had he a breath left. As it was, Silene took out half a dozen of Aron's soldiers before she was subdued, spewing their remains across her captors.
The fallen king tore his gaze from his mate and surveyed the carnage. They had fought valiantly, man and beast alike, side by side. Now they lay dying together on the field of defeat. Aron had the greater force; Sigurd knew that more than a year ago. But he would not give up. He would not surrender his people to slavery at the hands of such a tyrant. He built his army, recruiting any dragon or human who would come to his aide. He even appealed to the Hidden. But it wasn't enough.
Vicki's Comments: The cover doesn't grab me. I think it's because the whole thing is pretty much the same color which all blends together. The picture isn't gripping or interesting. I'd rather see an actual dragon or an egg that was a different color than the background. I would look for a different graphic, and I probably would chose a different font.
I think the description can be tweaked a bit. I'm not a big fan of questions at the end of a blurb. If you write the blurb well enough, the reader should be able for form their own questions. I'd cut the questions at the end, and I would also cut the first two sentences and start with "Lana..." so we get right into the character and her problem.
The first 300 words didn't do it for me. My opinion only, but I didn't like the point of view shifting. I would start in the dragon's point of view and stick with it through the whole first section. I also felt that some of the prose could be tightened up. For example, 'strode haughtily' is repetitive. The word strode tells the reader how he's walking, you don't need to weaken it by using the adverb.
I do like the idea of a story being told (at least in part) from a dragon's point of view. A lot of fantasy that I read have dragons, but they're usually just destructive. I like the way these are portrayed here. With a bit of tweaking I think this can be successful. I'm guessing the main reason it's not selling is the cover.
What do you guys think?