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Dragon Fate

(War of the Blades #1)

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  651 ratings  ·  62 reviews
Dragon Fate, the first novel in J.D. Hallowell's War of the Blades, is a heroic fantasy adventure in the classic tradition of the genre. Delno Okonan is a young former soldier eager to put the swords and strife of war behind him, when a chance encounter leaves him inextricably entwined in a tangled web of dragons, magic, and intrigue, as he struggles to find his place amon ...more
Kindle Edition, 404 pages
Published December 20th 2011 by Smithcraft Press
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Mar 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
You've got to love this author, and if you haven't read all of his books you are really missing out. The Dragon Fate series is one of the best indie fantasy series I've ever read. J.D. Hallowell has a wonderful way of describing his characters and worlds. You feel as though you are immersed in the story! You'll love how Delno meets his dragon, how they become close, and how he inherits his magical powers. You'll also be impressed by the level of description that also avoids the lengthiness of tr ...more
Jul 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: done
Delno doesn't know what to do with his life. He's an ex-soldier who doesn't have any job related skills. He just doesn't have any idea what he would like to do. Then he meets a dragon.....

I love the premise, and as the story unfolded it just got better. Loveable characters, fun magic and and a story that moves well. J.D.'s style of writing is much like Anne McCaffrey's; not a lot of hair-raising moments, killing or bloodshed; but a smooth, more realistic and enjoyable adventure. I am looking for
Bob Milne
An all-round solid read, this was paced well, with great characters, an intriguing world, and a plot that flowed naturally from the opening scenes. I did put it down a few times, before coming back to enjoy the read, so I feel compelled to caution new readers that it's not the classic sword-and-sorcery adventure you're expecting. It's far deeper, more philosophical, and more focused on character interactions than grand quests or epic battles.

Fortunately, our pair of mismatched heroes are a novel
Sadie Forsythe
Oct 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
I wonder if it is possible to have slice-of-life fantasy (or fantasy slice-of-life). Either way, that is essentially what this book is. A man stumbles upon a dragon and then goes on his merry way, eating, drinking, traveling, camping, occasionally talking to people, and learning about the care and upkeep of a dragon. It rolls along this peaceful path for a good 80% of the book (and I read it on a Kindle so it was actually 80%, as opposed to a generic long time expressed as 80%).

The anatomy, soc
Jun 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
I was given a copy of Dragon Fate to review by the author, in exchange for providing an honest and objective review.

When I read the overview of Dragon Fate I was immediately intrigued. It sounded fantastic, and I was pleased when it did not disappoint. It is a modest length, and appropriate for its genre and content. I felt the pacing was spot on, I never got bored with the story, and I never felt rushed. Furthermore, the details never contradicted themselves and in such an extensive new world,
Jul 29, 2012 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
I...just...can't...go on...
I tried. I really, really tried to finish this book! I just can't. I just stopped at the 46% done mark, and honestly I'm surprised I even made it as far as I did. The book failed to capture my interest, and this far deep into the book, I don't feel it's worth any more of my time. When I got to around page 25, I thought about stopping, but decided to press on. Then, around page 75, the baby dragon hatched from the egg so I figured it was going to pick I kept goi
Robert Evert
Mar 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a terrific book. Solid story. Wonderful writing. Terrific characters. What I really enjoyed most about it was that the characters, particularly the dragon, had very rich personalities that felt real to me. I highly recommend this book for anybody who likes thoughtful fantasies.
Jul 02, 2012 rated it really liked it
This book took me on an adventure filled journey full of magic, intrigue and excitement. Overflowing with likeable and believable characters, Hallowell successfully depicts a traditional fantasy story that I thoroughly devoured in just a few days. Delno, a humble young man finds himself face to face with an old and pregnant female dragon and is immediately thrown into the world of the revered dragon riders, magical individuals blessed with longevity, unrivalled strength and a unique companionshi ...more
Jeffrey Poole
May 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
4.5 Stars!

Delno is a decorated veteran of war who is trying to determine his place in society when something happens that changes his life forever. He encounters a wounded female dragon and learns he has been chosen to "bond" with the dragon's unhatched baby.

What follows is a meticulous, well thought out adventure where you, the reader, get to experience the baby dragon's hatching, upbringing, training, and all the struggles the two of them endure as they both cope with learning what being bonde
A.L. Butcher
I liked this a great deal although I did find it a little slow to start, however once the story got going it was good. The relationship between the dragons and the Riders is interesting and something I have not encountered before. Touching in many ways the magic between the two species is well described and not over done.

The main character is thrown in at the deep end and the story is an interesting journey of who and what he is and his relationship with his dragon, his comrades and others aroun
Ouch. I wanted to like this book, but wow — it's almost painfully boring. It's pedestrian and nearly plotless. Besides bonding with a dragon hatchling, nothing much happens for the longest time. And the bonding scenes were sickly sweet, unlike the bonding of Temeraire with his rider in His Majesty's Dragon.

Very little tension for most of the book. No "big bad" till 2/3 into the novel, when a plot finally emerges. Any problem or challenge is quickly resolved by the ever-ready hero. And he perfor
Adam Tritt
Apr 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
If you are a fan of Fantasy and dragon-lore, it would be hard to go wrong with Dragon Fate. Written in a style that slips by smoothly, you will soon be along for the journey before you know it. Action, adventure, and, of course, dragons. You will not be sorry for downloading this.
The Literary Connoisseur
Dragon Fate is an exciting and adventurous read. One that'll keep you at the edge of your seat wanting more. I'm very excited and enthralled to start J.D. Hallowell's next War of the Blades book, Dragon Blade!
J.S. Menefee
Jan 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dragon Fate by J.D. Hallowell is the first book in the War of the Blades trilogy. It bills itself as a “classic example” of a heroic fantasy adventure, and details the seemingly-chance encounter between a dying dragon and an aimless young man that results in the birth of a dragon who bonds to the young man. Together, the young man and baby dragon grow and develop in skill, knowledge and power – just in time to save the world.

The cover is excellent and evocative. The author’s style is relaxed and
Dec 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dragon Fate by J.D. Hallowell is an excellent fantasy novel. I actually read this book twice before writing my review and that isn't something that I do all that often due to the length of my TBR list. I'll have to say that I enjoyed the second reading immensely and easily see this series getting multiple more readings (the second book is just as good) in the future.

I really like the main character Delno. He is just a good guy and tries to do the right thing to the best of his ability. He is a
Ch'kara SilverWolf
I truly loved this book. It has everything a good fantasy quest needs. It has romance, intrigue, adventure, Elves and magik.

It is a testament to the author that his incredible knowledge of dragons has brought this story to life. I love a story that has me feeling as if I am a part of it and I was not disappointed. I could feel the wind on my skin as I soared through the air upon the backs of dragons.

Delno is a strong character, with a humbleness that endears him to you while at the same time bei
May 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Dragon fate was a very good read, one of the hardest to put down that I've read in some time. The characters are well written (nothing to gush about but well written), the story was very well thought out and is what set this book apart in my eyes over other dragon fantasy books I've read, the author does a good job of altering from the normal path that dragons take in this type of book and was enjoyable for me to read. The only draw back to me was the end of the book seemed to just get cut off o ...more
Kathryn E Manson
Mar 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Dragon Fate is at times slow.......but, ........

Dragon Fate is at times slow.......but, ........ that is just to make sure that the hook is in tight to reel you in. When the book took a turn to the fast track it held me so tight that I couldn't put it down. What a wonderful book it is, I can't wait to read the next installment. I think after all the things that J.D. Hallowell has done in his life, he has finally found his true calling.

Selena Lang
Sep 20, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dragons, fantasy
Excellent first novel. The characters were well rounded and fun to read about. I really enjoyed this one and look forward to the next.
Jun 16, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013, did-not-finish
I'm lost in the massive info dump of the first few chapters. So is my interest. Sorry, but not coming back.
Lisa Williamson
Nov 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: lovers of dragons
I started this book and put it down before I should have. It is a little slow to start but once it gets moving you will find it is a good tale. While there is just too much minutia for a five star review from me the characters are rich and the story is compelling. I liked the relationships that evolve as the hero learns his role as a new dragon rider.

The villain of the piece was a little cliche but that was only because he is not the main villain I believe. This first book clearly is leading us
Feb 27, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Childrens style fantasy about the bonded(/forced) love between a man and a dragon. The first 2/3 about the dragon growing, food, handshakes, and the reputation of the main character - a much better sounding story from before the start of this book. The last part is a sex (trying to mask as a love) story with the main character and another dragon rider and a show down with the only character that the main character doesn't like (in the entire book), who, of course, is a bad guy. Poorly paced, bad ...more
Mean Jane
I'm a little surprised (okay, suspicious) of the amount of 4-5 star reviews. Do...they not see how many of the dialogue tags aren't punctuated correctly? Or that there's outright missing punctuation within the first few pages? Because it's kind of hard to miss.

Or is it a tit-for-tat deal?

There may be a good story in there (I was hoping for one. I'm such a sucker for dragons) but even a casual glance shows this is in need of editing.

No official starred rating because I don't do that on samples.
Beth Anz
Sep 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A fascinating history of a young soldier and his unlikely encounter with a dragon. It's a beautifully told narrative detailing a man's journey from a crossroads in his life. Delno must learn to understand the ways of magic and companionship with his new magical partner. I loved how the story is told, like a first person account of a lost history in a magical world. While driven by fantasy, the story and characters stay grounded in a familiar world.
Tyler McAllister
I'm very easy to please but this is one of the most disappointing books I've read. Very, VERY, cliche, nothing original, and a complete lack of depth. I bought both books because of the 4+ star review from Amazon but I won't read the second...
Aug 26, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book was okay. Would I read the next book: maybe not. The book was filled with a lot of explanations and not enough action. I could skip parts and still know what was going on. The hero was predictable, but likable. The dragon was much more likable and was well described.
Oct 22, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this book a lot. I loved the detailed descriptions of dragon lore. I will be reading the second book in this series.
Daniel J. Weber
The Good:
Hallowell definitely thought a lot about this book before and during the writing process. The highlight of and primary content in Dragon Fate is watching a dragon growing up. Throughout this journey the reader has to opportunity to learn about dragon anatomy, biology, chemistry, culture etc. Dragons being present in a fantasy novel is nothing novel (oh noes! The puns!). Mostly, however, they are involved mostly like any other non-character object would be in the world building process.

James Watts
Great read

Good the action . Story makes you Care about the. Characters. Good set up on the back ground of each character. Enjoyed highly recommend
Chris Bullock
I enjoyed this book - it was an easy read, but had enough intrigue, information and occasional twists and surprises to keep my attention. The birth and growth of the dragon was instructive and inspired. The initial style takes a very instructional form, which I felt a bit strange to start with, but this soon developed as the story progressed. Because the story-line was fairly light, I felt occasionally that there was a need for further deep or emotional involvement with the characters or the plo ...more
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I'm a 60-ish father and husband who is fortunate enough to have lived an interesting and active life. I've had two fantasy series, the War of the Blades and The Legion of Riders, published, and I have several other fantasy and SF projects in the works. I like to keep many irons in the fire at once, so my work experiences include such diverse occupations as automotive mechanic, cowboy, photographer ...more

Other books in the series

War of the Blades (3 books)
  • Dragon Blade (War of the Blades, #2)
  • Dragon Justice
“The two guards inside stuck their spears through the peek holes in each door trying to skewer him. He simply stepped back and said aloud, “Geneva, they seem to be having trouble finding the key. “Here,” she replied, “use mine.” She crouched low and drove her talons through the three-inch-thick, iron-bound oak and pulled both doors out of the portal.” 1 likes
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