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Tag: Madison Keller

The Flower’s Fang Series, by Madison Keller – Book Reviews by Fred Patten

by Pup Matthias

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

The Flower’s Fang series.
This is a colorful mixture of furry and high fantasy.

Snow Flower: Arara’s Tale, by Madison Keller.
Portland, OR, Hundeliebe Publishing, May 2016, trade paperback, $5.99 (72 pages), Kindle $0.99.

Flower’s Fang, by Madison Keller.
Portland, OR, Hundeliebe Publishing, August 2014, trade paperback, $14.99 (354 pages), Kindle $0.99.

Flower’s Curse, by Madison Keller.
Portland, OR, Hundeliebe Publishing, June 2016, trade paperback, $13.99 (238 pages), Kindle $4.99.

These three books are bibliographically complex. Flower’s Fang and Flower’s Curse are advertised as a two-volume set. The first edition of Snow Flower was published on December 21, 2014. The second edition, with proofreading errors corrected and still with Keith Draws’ cover, was published on May 16, 2016. It was reprinted with Teagan Gavet’s cover, retypeset more compactly from 126 pages to 72 pages, with the new subtitle “Prequel Novella to Flower’s Fang” added, and the city of publication changed from Seattle, WA (CreateSpace’s office) to Portland, OR (Keller’s home), on April 20, 2017. If you order it today, you’ll probably get it with Teagan’s wraparound cover.

Flower’s Fang has three listed editions, all dated August 2014. The typography of the title lettering changes, but all have the same illustration by Johnny Atomic. The third edition has two maps added.

Flower’s Curse has two editions listed, both dated June 2016. The second edition has a new cover by Idess Sherwood (the cover of the first edition is by Keith Draws), and includes the maps.

The main protagonist of all three books is Arara, a young Jegera (anthropomorphic wolf) in a fantasy world dominated by a “Kin-Jegera Empire”. The Kin are humanoid and human-sized flower fairies or elves, who wear ornate silken robes (see the cover of Flower’s Fang) and uniforms:

“‘How are you feeling?’ A melodious Kin voice asked her. The Kin hovered over Arara, her yellow petal hair framing her green face like a sun halo. The scent of the Kin’s petals reminded Arara of a sweet flower, but it was strong to the point of being overpowering.” (SF, p. 23)

The Empire is satisfactory to both, but the Kin are definitely the aristocracy and the Jegera are the peasants. The Jegera wear some clothes and can walk two-legged, but they usually run on all fours. The Kin ride the Jegera like horses.

“‘You can’t go treating her differently, Athura.’ Eraka grinned and looked at Arara. ‘That settles it. Go put on your shorts and vest. There is still snow up in the foothills, and we don’t want you getting cold.’

Arara barked in delight and scampered off to get dressed.” (SF, pgs. 3-4)

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The Dragon Tax, by Madison Keller – book review by Fred Patten.

by Patch O'Furr

Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.

511ionAOd9L._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_The Dragon Tax, by Madison Keller
Portland, OR, Hundeliebe Press, June 2016, trade paperback $9.99 (141 pages), Kindle $2.99.

This lighthearted little book is an expansion of the short story that appeared in the RainFurrest 2015 charity anthology, A Menagerie of Heroes; now out of print. Sybil Dragonsbane, a young professional dragon slayer, is called to the Kingdom of Thima. It has a dragon problem – but not the usual kind:

“‘Actually, we quite like having a dragon on the island,’ the King sat forward, eyes shining. Multiple chins jiggled as he wagged his hard around theatrically. ‘They bring lots of adventurers through the town, adventurers who all pay for a permit to hunt the dragon. They drop gold at local businesses before going off on their hunt. Whether they survive or not, that is not my problem.’” (pgs. 5-6)

None of the previous dragon hunters have survived, and the dragon has amassed quite a pile of gold and gems. Now King Jonathan has decided to tax it. The problem is getting the dragon to pay the tax. That’s why he has summoned Sybil; to offer her the new post of Thima’s dragon tax collector:

“‘My fee is double.’ Sybil placed her hands on her daggers.

‘Double?’ the King roared, surging to his feet. ‘I’m not asking you to kill the thing.’

‘True, what you’re asking is even more dangerous. You’re asking me to leave a dragon alive, a dragon that now will know my scent and my tricks. If that won’t work for you …’” (p. 8)

What happens, about a third of the way through, is unexpected. It is probably supposed to be a major surprise to the reader, but it is impossible to keep from giving away a spoiler and to go on reviewing the final 2/3 of the book. Briefly, Riastel the dragon turns human; Sybil learns that King Jonathan and his wizard Baldwin lied to her and have a more sinister plot, and the dragonhunter and dragon-turned-human team up to save both their lives. Also, Sybil is a young woman and Riastel makes a very handsome and hunky human male. Romance ensues. This is Book One of a series, so the reader will not be surprised to have an ending that leads to further adventures.

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