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Ammon's job was simple, to care for the dragon eggs in the Nest. It should have been easy, but it wasn't. When the sun rose after the hatch, he had made an enemy of the most powerful man in the kingdom, and he would soon learn that was the least of his problems!

344 pages, Kindle Edition

First published October 1, 2013

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James Stevens

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5 stars
291 (39%)
4 stars
256 (34%)
3 stars
121 (16%)
2 stars
54 (7%)
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10 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 67 reviews
Profile Image for Racheal .
390 reviews2 followers
April 12, 2016
Synopsis of the story:
Hatch is a story about a young man named Ammon who accidentally links and forms a connection with a dragon. In the midst of forming this connection, he makes an enemy of Tirate, a selfish villainous man who wants nothing more than to be King. But in order to do so, he needs to first be linked to a dragon.. and that dragon happens to be Ammons. This sends Ammon on an unimaginable adventure that's full of twists and turns!

I give this story a confident five stars. While there were three small editing errors I spotted and one or two instances where I felt the plot was a little predictable, everything else about the story was near flawless. When I started this book, I wasn't sure how I was going to feel about it because the synopsis doesn't really tell you much about what the book is going to be about. But after the first chapter, I was hooked and couldn't put the book down for the life of me. Normally, I'm a sappy reader and have to have a lot romance in a book to read it. This book was something entirely different in that aspect than what I'm used to reading. However, it's the sheer creativity that captivated me into being so glued. Stevens did a wonderful job of creating a world that you could see clearly without ever being confused about what was going on. Overall, the characters were all really lovable.. even the dragons! I wasn't expecting it to end the way it did which leaves me very eager to read the next book! I definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves YA with a good adventure!


From the very beginning I was hooked by the setting and Ammon, who was a tender.. basically, he kept the fires going to warm the dragon eggs until they hatched and made a link with a knight. Defying the rules by extreme odds, Ammon linked himself with a golden dragon. I really liked Ammon as a character, though I have to admit that his cluelessness drove me a little nuts in the beginning. But as the story goes on, he matures and grows as a character, gaining knowledge about the things he was clueless about. Which is kinda cool that he grew so much from where he started.

I absolutely loved his dragon Fulgid as well! He was just so cute! I adored that him and Ammon shared a special connection. I also liked that Fulgid accepted El, even when Ammon was unsure of her. I really liked how strong willed El was and I'm very thankful that there was some romance in this book. Overall, I really enjoyed this book and can't wait for the sequel!
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
March 6, 2017
A few errors but a thrilling story!

I lived the story! It was familiar enough to be understood but also original and unique in its own way. I really liked all of the characters, they were all very well thought out and worked well with each other. As many have said, yes, spelling and grammar errors are littered throughout but if you can get by it without it bothering you too much, you will really enjoy this book.
Profile Image for Maryalice.
238 reviews
September 9, 2016
Great book. I'm long way from YA, heck I have YA grandchildren, but I loved it. Started slow and I started to put the book down, but ended up staying up past my bed time to finish it. One thing, if you are going to make rules for dragons, you have to tell the dragons.
Profile Image for D.L. Williams.
Author 3 books9 followers
December 13, 2013
I loved this story, it kept me reading (when I was supposed to be doing other things). I loved the characters, I loved the descriptions, there were good guys, bad guys, loved some, hated some. I cant wait for the next book to come out in this series.

My only complaint: This book needs to be edited better. many of the sentences don't make sense, it really needs to be cleaned up.
Author 13 books52 followers
January 3, 2015
At first I thought, "Another Dragon Rider book", but I loved it. Great fantasy writing. Loveable characters, and of course, dragons. (The main one reminding me quite a bit of my dog). Appropriate for teens and up, will surely be looking forward to more in the series. I was given a copy of "Hatch" by the author, James Stevens, in exchange for an honest review.
2 reviews
December 29, 2013

The story line and the characters captivated me and held me hostage for two days. Loved it!!! I will definitely recommend this book to friends and family!!

Profile Image for Rivalie.
589 reviews44 followers
November 23, 2014
*Copy provided by author for honest review*
Initial Thoughts: When I first heard of this, I have to say I wasn't that impressed. I picked it up because I haven't read anything dealing with dragons in a while and missed them. The summary for this book isn't that great but I promise the actual book is pretty damn awesome. Oh Fulgid, you've officially became my favorite dragon of all time.

Full Review:

Ammon was hired to take fore the dragon eggs, keeping them warm and safe until hatching. If all went well, he'd get his pay and be on his way. Unfortunately life does that work that way and he finds himself bonded to a golden dragon on Hatching day. The dragon was late to the hatch which was unheard of, but the color makes it all the more special. To top it all off, he also made an enemy of the king's heir, a greedy conniving man by the name of Tirate. Tirate's been waiting ages to bond with a dragon as that is the only thing that is keeping him away from the throne. To be bonded with a golden dragon is the greatest of honors and will make him an unstoppable tyrant.

I'll admit that when I first read the summary, I wasn't all that interested. My only drive to accept the request was because there were dragons and it's been ages since I read a dragon book. I was afraid that this book would not live up to my expectations and I'd be left disappointed BUT everything I ever feared of was COMPLETELY disproven when I finished reading Hatch. This book was so much fun to read and full adventure and epicness and adorable dragons!

Ammon is one of those characters who go through a lot of character development and growth throughout the course of the story. He starts off a timid watcher of the eggs with a small spark of courage that by the end of the book grows into a full blown flame. There were parts of the story line that I easily saw coming so yes, it does get pretty predictable, but the fun and new thing about the story were the characters. I don't think I've ever met any other dragon with as much sass as Fulgid. That little golden dragon has got some serious attitude and he's absolutely adorable. The two of them make a very uncanny pair as they share an incredibly strong bong of loyalty and courage.

Other memorable characters included Boris, King Erik. the knights, and El. Boris took on the role of a father figure, guiding Ammon to become educated in the way of a dragon knight. King Erik is like a wise uncle or grandfather, depending on how you look at him. Both of them were really amazing people and helped Ammon grow so much throughout the book.

Of course, we must include El, Ammon's wife (spoiler?) I liked her fire because it made reading her conversations with Ammon really enjoyable. They are both pretty young and thrust into a crazy situation. My one problem with their relationship was how stilted it was. Obviously it was mega awkward at moments because they didn't plan on becoming married to each other, but the way El handled it didn't really make sense. She spends a month after marriage avoiding Ammon and then he goes to risk his life and she's upset that he's leaving her alone? In the end, they do work things out so it's all good.

It seems crazy to say this but I absolutely adored Tirate and Liah. They are absolutely the most hilarious "villains" of a story I've ever read to date. Tirate seems like a petulant child while Liah is like a whining cough (rhymes with itch). I still didn't like Liah because of how she treated El, but that ending had me laughing so hard I might have cried.

Overall, the story is definitely very enjoyable. It was a bit long and there are a couple grammatical errors, but it's a first book so I'm not too worried about it. Hopefully the second book comes out soon because I miss Fulgid already.

Read my reviews at:
Profile Image for Muhammad Gibran.
166 reviews3 followers
January 5, 2014
I really have a lot of fun reading this book. Its a little bit cliche with the theme and plot but it has some interesting character in it so its not get bored.

looking forward to read the 2nd book.
Profile Image for Keelan.
80 reviews10 followers
June 15, 2018
An excellent book with a lot of typos-- this can be obnoxious in places but the excellent plotting and characterisation far outweighs the errors.

Lots of potential for the sequel, I'm looking forward to it.
Profile Image for Julianne.
266 reviews5 followers
February 25, 2014
This book could have been decent but it is in desperate need of an editor. It was so rife with errors that it completely detracted from the story. The errors became more and more common as the book went on until it was to the point where I was finding one every 2 minutes or so. Some are basic editing errors with a missing letter or punctuation, but a lot of it was the use of a wrong word (taunt/taut, arrange/arraign,) homonym errors (isle/aisle, your/you're), and just poor grammar (then/than, mismatched subjects and predicates, etc.).

An editor also could have helped get rid of some of the "fluff." This book was far longer than it needed to be. I was bored by the time I was 2/3 finished with it.

I also found the storyline to be very predictable and the characters were flat. There was no difference in the way one spoke or acted compared to the others. It made them hard to keep separate. Yes, it's a children's/YA book but that doesn't mean the writing should be of a lesser quality than in an "adult" book. I have read and enjoyed many YA books but unfortunately this was not one of them.
Profile Image for Joe.
89 reviews9 followers
December 25, 2013
I read this book about a month ago and already feel like I forgot most of what happened. It was a rather general fantasy plot about a guy bonding with a dragon and hes part of a royal bloodline. The dragons are more of an intelligent beast in this book. There isn't really anything at all in the book that is magical for those wondering (except a telepathy between some bonded). The book was terribly symmetric so when one thing happened you could almost always predict that another thing would happen. Spoiler examples: He bonds with a dragon so later his wife bonds with a dragon. His dragon is rare; one of a kind, so his wife's dragon is also rare and one of a kind.

I'll read the sequel but it's not going to be too high on my to-read list.
4 reviews
November 20, 2013
This book has a lot of potential, lots of ideas and a fun story overall... but the execution is pretty rough, fantasy stereotype follows stereotype, and they are set up like dominoes, set them up, make them fall.

If you like stories about dragons you're going to enjoy it, Sanderson it is not.
Profile Image for JoJo Gozy .
214 reviews3 followers
May 30, 2017
Enjoyed it

This book was very well written and I enjoyed it immensely. Great for kids and adults. I would definitely recommend.
Profile Image for Steph.
152 reviews20 followers
January 5, 2020
A friend lent me this, and it was an easy, fun book. The writing left something to be desired, but otherwise it was a fun, adventurous read.
Profile Image for Jessi (Novel Heartbeat).
996 reviews611 followers
Shelved as 'dnf'
October 13, 2022
DNF @ 15%

This feels juvenile to the point that it should be labeled Middle Grade instead of YA. The MC is bland and has no personality to speak of, and the whole thing just feels like one big Eragon ripoff. The writing is bland, too. I was bored (which is a crying shame because DRAGONS) and have no desire to continue.
Profile Image for Royal.
121 reviews5 followers
May 15, 2019
DNF @ 54%.

I want to preface this review by saying that I'm actually quite at home with cliched stories, in fact, some of my favourite stories (from novels to movies) don't do anything too different from the expected. So if originality is a must for you then you can add those to my list of critiques despite it not having bothered me personally.

I understand that this novel is targeted towards "young adults" but I feel a more accurate tag might have actually been "children". I say this because the plot itself is way to linear with set-up and payoff happening almost a chapter of one another. The villain is one-dimensional and incompetent, coming off as a cartoon character rather than a threatening presence. To top it all off every event is explained within lines of its occurrence almost as if the reader is as oblivious as the main character.

Bland Main Character
A common problem with the hero's journey trope is the protagonist becoming a passive character who simply reacts to the events occurring around him rather than actively participating in them. Giving a character a goal can go a long way to alleviating this problem. You can guess Ammon doesn't have. Events happen to him, he does not make events happen.
If that was my only critique of him then it would be something I could overlook. That however isn't the case, since like many "Joe Everymans", Ammon suffers from a lack of personality. I struggle to attach anything to him, since even his temporary destitution doesn't leave a flaw (or quirk) of any kind on him.
Worse yet, he is rendered little more than the pet of his own dragon. You heard me right. There is no partnership between him and his dragon, instead he acts more like mediator between his wondrous dragon and the lay people. If Ammon could do something then it can be assumed that his dragon would be able to do it 10 times better.
I don't know why the perspective is kept on Ammon, he's clearly the most boring character in the novel, his dragon would've been a more interesting POV to explore the world through.

In conclusion, I'm sure Ammon grows to be a better character but accompanied by the childish narrative, there's almost no way I'm going to be able to finish this novel.
22 reviews1 follower
August 22, 2021
Read the bad reviews, they're the most honest about this one. It does give me the idea that a canny dragon pulling along its bumbling, incompetent human sidekick into more and more power and influence might be a fun story, but I'm pretty sure that's not the goal here.
I guess I've mostly been lucky in what I read, as I hadn't experienced (very often in book form, movies are another story) what most people complain about when they complain about generic fantasy stories. This book definitely took that to a screeching halt and went overboard with it - the sheer amount of "unique, super special protagonist stuff" the book comes up with for the dragon borders on parody but it's played straight to painful head-desk inducing severity.
Pass on this and be glad it never got any sequels.
Profile Image for Stuart Macmartin.
631 reviews3 followers
December 27, 2021
Fun read. Several problems, but gave it 4 stars anyway. Typos fortunately can be flagged for the editors. I had problem with some of the scale, particularly with tunnels relative to the river and mountains. It was completely unclear why the deposit hadn’t been found before. An assassin does not behave like one. Some violence is toned way down. Someone knows what’s happening at two gates and it’s not clear how - just a throwaway line that doesn’t seem realistic. An important plot moment with strong mystery and foreshadowing was ignored. And some truly bad decisions from just about everyone that everyone just accepts for no good reason. But despite all this (and a bit more) this was a good read.

A few ideas were borrowed from Pern.
90 reviews15 followers
December 30, 2015
An enjoyable book to read. I loved that the plot was about dragons and showed them in a new and different way. The plot felt too simple at times and a few of the complications seemed to be solved too easily. But I really enjoyed the concept and felt like it was a great story and a fun read. Worth picking up
Profile Image for Joan Lloyd.
Author 53 books49 followers
October 8, 2020
I loved the story - 5 stars. Hated the lack of editing - really bad grammar, spelling etc. 2 stars. I averaged and weighted the story more heavily so I gave it four stars so as not to discourage readers.
Profile Image for Alex Stargazer.
Author 7 books18 followers
March 9, 2022
The best way to describe this book is using a metaphor. It’s a crude, unpolished natural diamond. Scratch the surface of the amateurish writing, and you find an epic tale where villains are villains and heroes are heroes. The world that the author imagines feels rich and engrossing, taking me on a nostalgic trip back to my favourite fantasy novels: Garth Nix’s Keys to the Kingdom, Trudi Canavan’s Magician, and especially, Paolini’s Eragon.

But I can’t pretend this is a great book, as it has too many flaws to overlook. Firstly, the writing is riddled with mistakes. There are sections where nearly every page has a mistake: the wrong word is used, a grammatical error is made, a sentence is incomplete, etc. The author should go over the text with a fine-toothed comb, or get a proofreader to do it. Because as a reader, it was painful. As a fellow author, I winced; this is exactly the kind of text that gives self-publishing a bad name.

The problems don’t end with the prose. The characterisation leaves something to be desired as well. In short, it’s missing depth. Most of the characters feel like clichés: the old king, the valiant elder knight, and so on. The only character that actually felt fleshed out was Fulgid, the golden dragon. (By the way, Fulgid is a horrible name for a dragon.) Writing deep, meaningful characters takes experience that the author clearly lacks. But I would suggest that he come up with a sketch of each main character’s back story and motivations.

I did enjoy Tirate and Liah as the villains. Tirate in particular showed cunning, forward thinking and intelligence, which made him an effective villain. One thing I would say: I found it difficult to believe that Tirate couldn’t get a single dragon knight to back him, given how important they are both militarily and politically. It would have made the conflict more interesting. As for Liah, she provided a certain comic relief to the story.

Aside from characterisation, what annoyed me was how Ammon, the protagonist, lacked a certain amount of intelligence. He constantly got himself into bad situations and would have died several times if not for the intervention of Fulgid, the little dragon. Frankly, the dragon seemed far more intelligent than he was. It almost came to the point where Fulgid became the deus in the machina: if Ammon was stuck in an impossible situation, Fulgid would come to rescue him, as surely as night follows the day. What the author really needs to do is make Ammon think his way out of a problem.

Another thing: there are too many instances where the plot hands Ammon and his allies an advantage on a silver platter. His dragon is more special than anybody else’s. His dragon finds a huge calentar deposit. His blood line is so special that everyone recognises him as king. Life is rarely this easy! He needs to face actual challenges—it’s what makes him grow as a character.

So what’s my final verdict? Objectively, this book is badly written, filled with typos, and stuffed to the brim with clichés and deus-ex-machina. But my heart wants to keep reading. Because there is great potential in this story.
Profile Image for Boyslove.
243 reviews18 followers
February 14, 2021
I’m writing my review as I go with this one.

1% - 30%
The story is fun, enjoying the dragons, the plot is starting to deepen a little, but the bad guy is pretty cliche. Nothing had really surprised me and I’d say the story has been predictable so far. I am enjoying the story, but one major thing is taking me out of the story and making me cringe quite often. The author needs to learn how to show emotion in body language and facial expressions, because using an exclamation mark to show joy, anger, anguish, determination and many more emotions, is just tiring. There are sooo many exclamation marks and it cheapens conversations and makes readers like me cringe. describe facial expressions, body language voice tone etc instead.

(Obviously everything I said a above is a personal opinion.)

My rating for the first 1% - 30% is between 3 and 3.5 stars.

30% -40%
Things haven’t gotten much better sadly. There are quite a few editing errors popping up. Several words with lines going through them from editing the book are still there. (About 5 instances so far) there are other minor editing mistakes, which aren’t as glaringly obvious.

As I continue to read, I’m struggling to like the main character. He seemingly doesn’t use his brain, like at all. He’s always confused, he’s kind of like a leaf in the wind.. just floats wherever the wind takes him, does whatever people tell him to do, somehow survives everything even though he has no idea what’s going on around him.

I guess this story strikes me as a more light hearted story that doesn’t take itself very seriously. Which there’s a place for stories like that. Obviously most of the people who have read this story really liked it, which is awesome. Sadly for me, this one isn’t working out and I may not even finish it 😕

My rating for this section 30% - 40% is 3 stars.
8 reviews
October 12, 2020
This Has become one of my top favorites. It actually introduced me to look for authors that I had never read before and opened up my library tremendously. Those that like to Read a real story Like sci-fi and fantasy authors used to write, in other words not book 1, book 2, maybe up to book 20. This is the real deal. I really enjoyed how Ammon begin in the book as a tender of dragons Eggs, all the way to the many happenings in his life to an end that I cannot stay because it’ll ruin your reading. BUT, even more enjoyable I said I recently bought the audio version. Is it possible to fall in love with a voice? I began listening to audiobooks last year and I’ve been so disappointed sometimes by the blindness and deadpan of some narrators but not Tim Bruce. I know I listen to this again with the narrator is Fantabulous I’ll have to look up some of his other books. While I love holding books and reading them myself I highly suggest getting this in the audio version if you can. So looking forward to James Stevens writings in the future....Go to read this book almost always leave comments because it is so enjoyable
1,442 reviews16 followers
November 6, 2020
Ammon's job is to take care of the dragon eggs until they hatch and bond with a knight. In this clutch of eggs there is a very small one that he feels will not hatch but he takes of it just like the others. When the hatching begins the king's son is there to claim his own dragon. He can not take over the throne until he has done so. He also leaves very angrily when he is rejected by the dragons and Ammon is bonded to the smallest dragon of all.

Thus begins the story of a young man who finds himself fleeing with a dragon he knows nothing about because the king's son wants to kill him. And what a chase it becomes as Ammon meets people who want to help him and he finally finds out what his true destiny is.
Profile Image for Enzo.
732 reviews1 follower
December 26, 2018
To be honest I remembered Pern and I just had to read the book. Ammon impresses a hatchling gold dragon. I guess I should start before that. Ammon's job was to care for the dragon eggs. He had to wait for them to be ready for hatching. Only the Noble could aspire to impress a dragon. Ammon manages it and escapes with his tiny dragon. He is about a cat-sized animal. He must hide as many are after him. The prince himself is after him to start a revolution. This is how Ammon meets his new friends who are trying to save his dragon.
I found the story a page-turner and can't wait for another in the series.
Profile Image for Calli Cat.
12 reviews25 followers
August 15, 2021
This was a very good book. The only reason I didn't give it 5 stars is I found the ending to be little childish and not very interesting. It kind of made it almost impossible for a second book and still be as good as this one.

Besides that it was great story that I loved to read. I really liked the direction it was going in. I liked how the characters where slowly growing and developing and becoming more mature. But then he went and gave the characters almost exactly what they wanted in the end and I don't see how the second one could be good. Not just some fairy tail.

I personally like the books with action and a good story.
November 5, 2020
From peasant to king

Delightful story. A peasant boy assigned to care for the eggs accidentally links with a small gold dragon at the hatchling instead of the waint knight. The small gold dragon is like no other dragon. Follow boys journey as he becomes a knight and then king and then as he leads his knights on dragons in a fight to save his queen and the peoplof his kingdom.
321 reviews
May 18, 2023
Fun, but entirely predictable and cliche. And don’t get me started on the girl who was so mad at the boy because he didn’t read her mind and understand her emotions. Roll my eyes. Very formulaic - I gave my kids a one sentence summary of the beginning, and they accurately predicted how it would turn out.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 67 reviews

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