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Villain Keeper (The Last Dragon Charmer #1)

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4.07  ·  Rating details ·  153 Ratings  ·  45 Reviews
Unexpected magic, villainous teachers, and dragons in disguise await readers in the first book of a delightful new tween adventure series by debut author Laurie McKay.

All his life, Prince Caden has dreamed of being sent on a quest to slay a dragon. But before he has the chance, he is ripped from his home in the Winterlands of Razzon and finds himself in Asheville, North Ca
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Hardcover, 336 pages
Published February 3rd 2015 by HarperCollins
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Laurie McKay Hi Rachna - This is a middle-grade fantasy so it's listed as children's fiction. It's appropriate for 8-10 years and up!

Community Reviews

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BookLoversLife
When Prince Caden is finally sent on a mission to slay a Dragon and become an Elite Paladin, he is thrilled, though thinks it's odd that he is being sent in the middle of the night with no fanfare. He sets off and quickly finds the dragon, but the next thing he knows, he along with Brynne (whom was nearby at the time) are swept away in a wave of dark magic. They end up in Asheville, North Carolina in modern times. It's a land of no Dragons and no magic so how can he finish his mission and get ho ...more
Ms. Yingling
Jul 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Copy provided by author

It's really irritating that some books receive huge amounts of publicity and aren't really that good, while well-crafted books like this don't even make my radar unless the author contacts me personally!

Caden, whose elder brothers have all gone on quests, is sent abruptly on one by his father, King Axel of Razzon. When he finds a dragon terrorizing a village, he is prepared to slay it, but is caught up with Brynne, a spellcaster whom he knows slightly, and is catapulted in
...more
Bee {Quite the Novel Idea}
Istyria book blog ~ B's world of enchanted books

Well, this was a lot of fun! That's the reason I love reading middle grade novels. They're always so much fun and imaginative! Even more so than young adult. Is this one perfect? No, but it's still very, very good and I really, really enjoyed it.



Villain Keeper tells the story of Prince Caden. While on his long-awaited quest to slay a dragon, he is suddenly ripped away from his home in the Winterlands of Razzon and finds himself in Ashville, North C
...more
Gail Nall
Nov 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 15ers, arc, middle-grade
Loved this book! It starts out as a fish-out-of-water story, with Prince Caden finding himself and his friend mysteriously landed in Asheville, North Carolina. But it quickly turns out that everything is not as it seems in Asheville, and in fact, they're not the only people from their realm to be living there. The book is full of humor and adventure, and the characters are all really well-drawn. Can't wait to read book two!
Shoshana
Mar 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
Genuinely funny middle-grade fantasy. In a twist in the usual Normal Kid Lands in Fantasy Aspects (see: Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, Land of Stories, friggin everything), Fantasy Kid Lands in North Carolina. And has to deal with it.

And all the fantasy villains that also live there.

And a foster situation where no one will agree to call him "your highness."

Amazing.
Sandy  Ball
Jul 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A keeper! Fun, fast paced, keeps you guessing as to what exactly the outcome will be. Definitely add this to your list of want to read.
Mallory (toweroftomes)
Originally posted to my blog The Leaning Tower of Tomes: https://leaningtoweroftomes.wordpress...

THE REVIEW:

Villain Keeper is a fun, charming, magical adventure story about a young prince, Caden, who just wants to finish his quest to slay a dragon and go home to his fantastical world of Razzon. But he’s stuck in Asheville, North Carolina, due to some mysterious dark magic, and finds himself in the middle of a swamp of banished evildoers who take the form of his school teachers and cafeteria work
...more
Dawn Reno Langley
Jan 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Laurie McKay’s debut young adult novel VILLAIN KEEPER, the first book in THE LAST DRAGON CHARMER series, is a fast-paced and charming story that introduces Prince Caden and brings the reader into his exciting life, a life where one of his dreams is to slay a dragon. When he finally gets the chance to do so, however, it’s not in his native land of Razzon but, instead, in the mountains of Asheville, North Carolina where he’s been transported against his will. Not only does Caden have to quickly ad ...more
Erik This Kid Reviews Books
Caden was a son of King Axel, King of the Razzon Winterlands. He was the youngest sibling, and felt like he had to prove himself. And he planned to do it on his Quest Day to slay a dragon. Suddenly, the king, Caden’s father, wakes him up in the middle of the night saying it is Caden’s time for his quest. Where is the ceremony? Where are the people? Caden quickly runs off into the night. And then, a flash of light, and… Where is he? And why is Brynne, the young sorceress whom hates Caden, there w ...more
Alan
Mar 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
I've always loved stories that mix this world, with another. Typically for me it's a mixture of people in this world with the Fey living side by side. Here it is a boy, Caden, a king's son actually, with a girl, Brynne, who is a powerful but untrained sorceress, who are both pulled from their own world into ours.
This book is the first in the series The Last Dragon Charmer. Since this is the first book in the series there is a certain amount of "setting the scene" that needs to occur, which is an
...more
Laurel Gale
Dec 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I got to read this as part of an ARC tour, but so many people had signed up for the tour that I didn't get it until after the release date. And I can see why it was so popular.

A great adventure with fantastic characters! The action started immediately, the magic system was well developed, and the interactions between the real world and the fantasy world were believable and interesting. I loved it!
Christie
Mar 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015, tweens
A new book for I'd say 4-7th graders that is the start of a series. A prince and sorceress (both 11 yrs. old) are magically sent to Asheville, NC and trapped there. Some mystery, some adventure, and also some humor as they try to fit into our world. This book could act as a stand-alone, but I personally am interested in what they get up to in the following books.
Krista Dolzer
My favorite thing about VILLAIN KEEPER was the cast of characters. I enjoyed spending time with Prince Caden--he was delightfully pompous, kind of like Prince Edward from Enchanted--and his friends, Brynne and Tito, were the perfect counterpoints.
Miss Clark
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Fee Roberts
Jun 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Villain Keeper by Laurie McKay is the first book of The Last Dragon Charmer series. Prince Caden wants to be an Elite Paladin, but his father, King Axel, sends Caden away and Caden isn't sure why his father would do that without having the Elite Paladin ceremony. He ends up in Asheville, North Carolina with Brynne, a sorceress, and his horse Sir Horace.

This was a fun story. Fast paced and imaginative. I can't wait to read the next installment!

I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway and all opin
...more
AwesomePerson
Mar 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
AWESOME!
SO COOL!
SO LIT!
BEST BOOK EVER!
SO MYSTERIOUS! :)
Elevetha
2.5 stars.

This reminded me strongly of Dark Lord: The Early Years, except for that I never questioned Caden's sanity, like I did with Dirk, and also I enjoyed this one quite a bit more.

(view spoiler)
...more
Theresa
Feb 09, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Cadon, the eighth son of King Axel of Razzon, a magical land of elves, dragons and magic. He is sent on a quest to slay a dragon and earn him the title of Elite Paladin. He falls through a portal with his mighty steed, Sir Horace, and an annoying sorcerress, Brynne, landing in Asheville, NC. An ordinary town in an ordinary world. He and Brynne must figure out a way back to their home, but all is not as it seems in Asheville and he and Brynne must join forces to find the missing girl and figure o ...more
Marissa
Aug 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: goodreads-win
Goodreads Hardcover Signed Win

A young prince is set on a quest to kill dragon by his father the King in the middle of the night but it turns out more than he could imagine.

Prince Caden finds himself in a different world and not knowing how to return him. He is befriended by his foster brother in a place where neither magic nor dragons exist. But all is not right since the school he attends the teachers who has been banished in his world and one teacher who tried to kill his father and family.

The
...more
Vanessa
Jul 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Caden is the 8th born prince of Razzon. His father sends him on a quest to kill a dragon in order to become an Elite Paladin like his brother before him. But along the way, Caden finds himself snagged in magic that transports him to....Ashville, North Carolina. But everything is not as it seems in Ashville. The sworn enemy if his people is teaching math at the local school and a mysterious "she" is controlling villains from many different realms. Caden must work to find the truth so he can get b ...more
Whimseas
Jul 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is such a fun read for kids (both girls and boys) and adults. It’s charming, fast paced and witty. There is plenty of mystery, magic and adventure with just the right amount of angst. The main characters are believable and endearing. It's a quick read with a satisfying ending leaving you anxious for book 2.
Molly
May 24, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It took awhile to get into this book, but once I did, I couldn't put it down.
Dr. Clary
Jun 16, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Planning on adding this new series to our school library this fall.

Ena Jones
Sep 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was fast-paced and a lot of fun! Can't wait for the next one!
Sophia W
Dec 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Creative and entertaining, this book perfectly met the goals of the genre.

I liked that the dragons that were slain were not truly beings of flesh - clearly they were meant not to be more than manifestations of forces, and therefore had no mind or feelings or real consciousness - and hence I could forgive this merciless hunt for them somewhat (I'm a big fan of the My Father's Dragon series).

The story was interesting, the characters were in-depth, and it kept me reading.

Of course, like basicall
...more
Lisa
Jun 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens, fantasy
Now this was well done! This was a great story; good, solid characters; good motivation, dialogue; the complete package. Well done! Middle-grade authors take note! This is how it's done! Can't wait to read the next one!
Laura
Feb 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Surprisingly good for a potentially cheesy premise. Looking forward to the next installment. Strong male and female characters, great location and description, amusing dialogue, limited details keep the pacing fast and exciting. Clearly J lit, but very engaging, with some great discussion points.
Jen Yonit
Cute mystery, interesting world building.
Jim Galford
May 25, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
An absurd tale. The book is not even acceptable for young readers, as it would probably turn them against fantasies and, perhaps even reading.
Hannah Smith
Oct 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this book!
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Laurie McKay lives in Durham, NC, with her family and two elderly dogs. She earned her bachelor's degree in biology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her master's degree in biological oceanography from North Carolina State University. She's taught at the Chesapeake Bay Governor's School for Marine and Environmental Science and in the North Carolina community college system. ...more
More about Laurie McKay

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