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Jaevid wants to pass his Avian year of training . . . but will he even survive it?

What kind of power is lurking inside him? After a year of training to become a dragonrider, Jaevid Broadfeather has been sent home to rest during a three-month interlude. But when he returns to find the king drake has chosen Beckah Derrick as his new rider, Jaevid realizes something big is about to happen. Every fiber of his being is pushed to the breaking point as Jaevid battles through his avian year, preparing for the final graduation test of the battle scenario. But there is more standing in his way than a few pushups and fancy sword moves. Jaevid must face a new fear as he is tormented by a gruesome nightmare of a mysterious gray elf warrior murdering the royal family of Maldobar. It seems obvious to him that this is some kind of message about how the war started long ago—until Felix assures him the king is very much alive. With his strange powers growing stronger by the day, and that violent dream replaying in his mind every night, Jaevid no longer wonders if he will pass his avian year or not—he wonders if he will even survive it.

The truth will soon be set loose.

300 pages, Paperback

First published August 26, 2014

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About the author

Nicole Conway

35 books570 followers
Nicole Conway is originally from North Alabama and attended Auburn University. She is happily married and enjoys writing as a full time career.

Best known for her international bestselling fantasy series, THE DRAGONRIDER CHRONICLES - Nicole is currently working on a follow-on series, THE DRAGONRIDER LEGACY. Her other published works include MAD MAGIC, THE DISTANCE BETWEEN STARS, SCALES (Releasing Spring 2019), and RENEGADE RUNNER (2021).

Nicole is represented by Fran Black of Literary Counsel.

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5 stars
1,114 (53%)
4 stars
660 (31%)
3 stars
246 (11%)
2 stars
39 (1%)
1 star
11 (<1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 87 reviews
Profile Image for Dea.
373 reviews
January 30, 2022
I wish dragons had a major role here. I still don't like that the females are portrayed as immature dimwits. The male characters are believable but the girls are really too silly which is weird because the author is a woman.
Profile Image for Cassandra.
1,192 reviews105 followers
December 18, 2015
My Thoughts - 5 out of 5 Unicorns - I loved it!!!
***Received the book as part of the book tour for an honest review

The cover is okay, but I don’t know that it would attract me to pick it up if I spied it in a bookstore. It would be a mistake to not pick it up, but I would have preferred a dragon on the cover again :)

Of course I loved this book, my favorite characters were off adventuring again :) I didn’t read the blurb before I started reading, so I had lots of surprises while I was reading. I never like to give away what happens in a story, so I won’t ;) But I will say that I went through many emotions while reading and things happened causing me to yell Nooooo inside my own head while reading. I wonder what will happen next to Jae and his friends, and what we will learn about who Jae is.

Nicole’s writing style is wonderful to imagine everything happening and getting a great picture in your head. I can’t wait to read more of this series and see what else Nicole thinks up in the future :)

I highly recommend this series to fans of Eragon and Lord of the Rings because those movies jump to mind a lot when I’m reading this series. I want to add this book to my classroom to share with my high school students as well, but it will be a while before I can do that.

Hmmm what Month9Book to read next ;)
Profile Image for One Man Book Club.
838 reviews41 followers
May 29, 2019
Check out my blog, One Man Book Club

The Value of a Star: Ratings Explained

Now here's a series your fantasy loving middle graders will love!

The Dragonrider books by Nicole Conway are marketed as two separate series.

The first four books are The Dragonrider Chronicles. They introduce the main characters and deliver the first story arc. The Dragonrider Legacy includes the final three books. This series continues the story of the main characters after a 40 year time jump, introduces new characters, delivers it's own story arc, and puts a nice bow on the conclusion of both series. Because the two series are so connected, I consider them one, seven book series.

The Dragonrider series isn't unique and it's quite formulaic. Not really any surprises here.

Unassuming, unloved boy gets accepted into Dragonrider school after a dragon chooses him to be his rider. The boy discovers he's the chosen one, destined to unite the people of the land, restore order and balance, overthrow the evil tyrant, and save the day. Twice. You know, because there are two series. The ending to the first story arc was meh, but the wrongs are righted in the end of the second story arc. Dues ex machina is the go to solution for the biggest problems.

But if the formula works, it works, and these stories work for their audience. The Dragonrider series are definitely story driven. It was enough to keep me interested through 7 books! Battles, mysteries, coming of age, magic, elves, first love, humor, friendship, bad guys, heroes.

Plus...dragons! Like I always say: dragons are the bacon of books--they make everything better!

The Dragonrider books are targeted for upper-middle grade fantasy fans and dragon lovers everywhere. Content appropriate for 10 and up.

Happy reading!
Profile Image for Phoebe Prince.
Author 2 books52 followers
May 17, 2016
Avian begins where Fledgling left off—literally with Jaevid in the same scene still reluctantly riding home for the three month interlude. Jaevid returns to find Katty with another boy (another blacksmith!) named Bren and his childhood home abandoned. Katty lives up to her name early on, and it’s clear she has complicated feelings for Jaevid, who has no desire to relate or reconnect with his childhood friend.

Jaevid learns wood-working, finds a mysterious sword, and a note from his brother, who’s now an infantry man at the front. These things (and Mavrik’s company) keep Jaevid from spiraling into self-loathing angst. Jaevid can’t indulge carpentry forever because an urgent letter from Beckah prompts him to go help her, Sile, and her family. Jaevid finds Icarus chose Beckah to be a dragon rider, and even though women aren’t allowed to go to the academy, Beckah is determined to learn, but things take another turn for the urgent when Sile’s wife nearly dies during pregnancy. She’s saved by Jaevid, who triggers a series of new Eleven powers, including super-healing and initiating his own growth spurt into adulthood.

Then, the dreams begin…dreams that aren’t part of Jaevid’s memory. He sees his mother, who talks to him while a mysterious Elf kills the king. At the end, there’s a lone soldier, and for most of the novel, Jaevid wakes up here. The dream begins to impact Jaevid’s life at the academy, and he knows the plot on Sile’s life extended all the way to the king. Jaevid knows his dreams are connected, but he’s struggling to survive his second year at the academy, which includes rooming with his school nemesis, Lyon.

I seriously never wanted to stop reading this book. The slight up-tick in pace, the logical growth in the characters were all great. There’s so much that happens in this second book, and the biggest improvement is that everything feels a bit more organically rooted this time. Jaevid’s relationships with Beckah and Sile are fleshed out, and Felix’s incongruous attitudes become grounded in his family problems.

The training was more practical this time. That has to do with Jace Rodin being an actual character instead of a last-minute stand in for Sile. The sadistic instructor, Thrane, pushes Jaevid to his limits. Thrane’s a racist, and he gets to Jaevid by breaking Lyon’s arm repeatedly and trying to goad Jaevid into a battle fever.

Mavrik, Icarus, and Nova all have actual personalities. The dragons still aren’t the main draw to this novel, but Icarus is a big-softy now. Mavrik has his own frustrations now; he’s being trained to keep pace with Jace’s dragon, Ghost, who is the fastest flyer among the dragon riders.

The one plot I didn’t like: Katty’s. It felt like trying to avoid a love triangle. This worked a little bit because Jaevid becomes friends with Bren, Katty’s new boyfriend. However, I still didn’t quite get the sudden change in Katty’s personality. I suppose that it could be explained because we’re seeing the entire relationship through Jaevid’s perspective, and he’s clearly confused about Katty’s actions as well.

Beckah: a turn for the awesome. I liked her in Fledgling, but I loved her in Avian. Beckah’s plot to become a dragon rider concludes awesomely. There was a scene with Beckah that I expected to go one cliche direction, but I loved her a thousand times more when that scenario was subverted. I don’t want to say anything else more about that scene because it’s worth it. For all the great moments Beckah gets in Avian, you should know where her plot with Jaevid is going. Jaevid and Beckah have ‘forbidden romance’ oozing from their pores, and it’s a sweet romance.

This book was exactly like I expected, and yet, refreshing and different. It grew out of the mold Fledgling provided. The academy is more dangerous, the mysteries behind the conspiracy feel like they matter, and Jaevid struggles with his new powers and strengths. Every character in this story feels like they belonged in this world more.
Profile Image for Jasmyn.
1,499 reviews19 followers
August 27, 2014
Avian is just about a perfect sequel to Fledgling. It's a DragonRiders of Pern for aimed at Young Adults. Jaevid is center stage again as he is set to start his second year of training - his Avian year. This year starts with some pretty amazing changes for him. He discovers some Gray Elf heritage the hard and painful way as his body finally develops. He also discovers some hidden gifts that are pretty scary to be honest. His gifts manifest in different ways and grow throughout the story. They play a very key role in his future and the future of the kingdom.

His friends and enemies are back, and we get to see his crush from home, Beckah, a little bit as well. This crush was the one thing that didn't sit quite right with me. It seemed to be a bit overdone and the fallout was a little awkward. It ended too many times when it could have been done with simply without the added drama. There is a new romance for Jaevid that is developing, a very good one, but with a girl that is pretty much off limits to him. I'll be very interested to see where this goes. She is about as non-traditional as he is and they are a good fit.

The land is seeing lots of unsettling changes as animals seem to be going crazy - attacking for no reason and causing a boat load of problems. Even Jaevid can't get through to them with his special animal speaking skills - their free will seems to be gone. No one knows what is causing this, but the dragons are particularly upset about it.

Jaevid's second year of training is a tough one. He is forced to make some incredibly difficult decisions and take part in some horrific training. He knows that he will have a major part to play in the upcoming events and in the war against the Gray Elves, but he's not sure what that part will be yet. This was a very exciting book two that kept me turning the pages as fast as I could to see what would happen next. I loved seeing his old friends and trainers and meeting a few new ones. I can't wait to see what book three will have in store.

*This book was received in exchange for an honest review*

- See more at: http://hotofftheshelves.blogspot.com/...
Profile Image for Gail.
801 reviews3 followers
March 30, 2015
Yes, I will admit that I like dragon stories. I wish I was a flyer. If you enjoyed Eragon and the continuation of the story, then you would enjoy this book. The first one was good, but this one was a little better. We see him become more aware of his powers and what he can do with them. I like his side-kick- a duke now- and how he protects him and heals him too. I also liked how this character accepted Lyon and forgave him for his previous behavior- I thought that showed how he was a better person than most. If you like stories where low born individuals become powerful and are able to do a lot of good, then you will enjoy this book. I don't like Katty anymore, but in the first book, I really thought she was special for helping him all the time and being his friend- perhaps she will improve. So many mysteries still- who did Sile make a promise to? Who does the scimitar really belong to? Did the king die and if he did as in his visions, then who is playing the king? Where did Ulric go? and should we care? Interesting book with lots of little things always leading to other things- well written. You will enjoy it- clean enough for tweens.
Profile Image for Ryan.
7 reviews
October 13, 2014
my wife got this book from the publisher and since I loved the 1st book I decided to read it. To compare Fledgling to Avian is like comparing the Sorcerers Stone to the Deathly Hallows. Fledgling Jae is innocent and naive. In Avian we got a young man on the edge of manhood. I couldn't be more happier about this book. I was super excited page after page. It makes you laugh and makes you cry. overall 5 stars doesn't do this book justice.
92 reviews2 followers
April 10, 2016
Loved it, Waiting for Book 3

The story was so entrancing I could not put it down. I really hope there is a book 3. I was saying no this can not be the end I need more but now I have to wait. Why are the dragons not there to protect their riders? I hope book 3 fixes that as true Dragon riders are those that can be one with their dragon.
Profile Image for Billie Bogart.
28 reviews1 follower
May 19, 2019
Fun read, but do not recommend for girls

This is a very traditional, boy oriented, quick, simple read. I would not recommend it for girls as it’s depiction of women is terrible, definitely from the old school.
Profile Image for Heather.
2,017 reviews9 followers
July 22, 2020
3.5 stars

Avian starts where Fledgling finished and while it was a fun, exciting read I don't think it was quite as good as Fledgling . In the first book, Jae was a young, innocent boy but now he is on the cusp of manhood and many changed have occurred, some I liked, others I didn't. However, I did like his personal growth as Jae struggled with his new gifts and finding out who he really is. Thankfully, he still had Mavrik, whom I adore, especially the way he purrs and chirps like a house cat when he is content or excited. I just wish he had a bigger role.

All the other main characters appear throughout this book and I liked the budding romance between Jae and Beckah. They are perfect for each other. I liked Beckah in the first book but I adored her in the second, and I think she will be an important character in the next book.

Some of the action was quite gruesome but it certainly added to the excitement and made for a fast-paced read. Avian certainly finished on a cliff-hanger so I am looking forward to reuniting with Jae and his friends now that he has graduated as a dragonrider.
Profile Image for Kristine.
2,250 reviews25 followers
January 19, 2023
4.5 Stars ⭐️

This book takes things up a level and I really felt like I was on a journey with Jaevid. Things are happening. He undergoes an event which changes everything for him and he begins to have a couple of people that he begins to consider friends. You can see that he is coming into his own and has an iron will when it comes to trying to be the best that he can be.

Things change when his sponsor is no longer at the school and he has to learn how to deal with someone new. His friendship with Felix is becoming solid and he is beginning to try to understand the abilities that all of a sudden show up.

This book is where we begin to see REAL growth from Jae. He is growing his circle - there is now Felix, Beccah and Sile (and Mavrik). He is excelling at the Academy as well.

One point of frustration. Sile knows exactly what is going on with Jae, but for whatever reason, he will not tell him. He says that he made a promise. That may be, but I can't help thinking that by not knowing what to look out for, or what to expect, that it can cause more harm than good.

But, what do I know?

On to book 3.
Profile Image for Jackie.
529 reviews11 followers
May 11, 2018
This is the second novel in the series about Jaevid, the half Gray Elf, half human that gets to train to be a Dragonrider. Jaevid begins his second and most hardest year at Blybrig Academy. Katty shows her true colors and Beckah and Jae's feelings for each begin to grow. Beckah also has been chosen by The King Drake, and things are happening to Jae that he can't understand. He is showing more unbelievable powers that he might not being able to control. On top of all, animals are going crazy.
I thought the story was good, though some of it was predictable, but the writing style feels juvenile and it "told" rather than "show" quite a bit. I thought this was middle grade, because of the writing, but the main character Jaevid is sixteen and I associate that with YA normally. Maybe it was Nicole Conway's first series and that's why the writing isn't great.
Profile Image for Steven Brown.
370 reviews4 followers
March 29, 2018
A fantastic read that is fast-paced and without fluff.

A solid second book to the series that makes the first book feel almost like a prologue. The story itself grabs you quickly in the pacing keeps the story and stressing with each chapter packed full. Where the first book felt like it was aimed towards a younger crowd this one does feel more like a young adult novel.

Outside of one instance In which I feel there was a point of view era nothing really took me out of the story.

Again the book that's feel like it's bumped up in age but that makes sense given that the protagonist is 17. While the language is still fairly clean there is an uptick in the action which is great for those of us who love swords and fantasy.
Profile Image for Alysha DeShaé.
1,248 reviews38 followers
July 4, 2017
I'm a little conflicted on how I feel about his sudden growth and there are still a few editing issues, but damn. It's still incredible and I still love it! Also, his powers are pretty cool, but I like that he's got some blowback when using them. After all, it would be just a touch too convenient if he was suddenly able to do everything he wanted without any real consequences whatsoever. And I'm not talking about the social stigma consequences, I'm talking about actual physical consequences of him essentially dropping every time he uses too much power to do something like healing. I like that.
September 6, 2021
Avian: MG/Lower YA. Secondary-World Fantasy. Academy. Animal Companions - Wyverns. Coming-of-age. Magic. Romance. Friendship. Single POV. Overcoming Adversity. Training. Mentor/student. Humans. Grey Elves. War. Magic. Secrets.

I'm not telling you what happens but personally, Chapter 6 is one of my favourite chapters in this book, along with Chapter 24. Those are 5 star reads for me. The emotions and tensions are excellent.

How much I liked it: 4.5 Stars
Ideas - World Building: 3 Stars
Ideas - Plot: 4 Stars
Character Depth: 4 Stars
Character Interactions: Average
Animal Characterisation: 3.5 Stars.
Warnings: None.
Execution: 4.8 (I noticed two proofreading errors; a spelling and punctuation error).
Writing Notes: n/a (less)
1 review
December 29, 2022
I thought this book and the one before it was fine. Nothing fantastic but a pleasant enough read. Up until the main protagonist suddenly got Super Saiyan powers and it instantly destroyed my interest in it.

A powerful ancient king dragon shows up for some little girl for dubious reasons as well. Also disappointed that this seemed to be yet another dragonrider series where the supposedly intelligent, sapient dragons have absolutely no agency as characters and are instead just glorified scaled horses with wings. Please stop making your fantasy creatures 'intelligent' and then giving them absolutely no characteristics that actually show it.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Amber.
183 reviews
December 1, 2018
This book was much like the first, it held me captivated from the beginning, I feel like there was never a dull moment. There are a handful of moments that are truly terrifying, and others that are absolutely heart breaking to me, however I still greatly enjoyed this book, and I can hardly wait to read the next one.
July 28, 2018
I am so captivated!!!!!

I love a good book. So far I cant put it down. Everyone will love this adventure. I dont know where to begin, you just need to start and before long you wish it would never end. Trust me, its 3:30 am. 😁
Profile Image for Deb.
69 reviews
January 10, 2019
Good Adolescent Tale

I like the story’s quick progression. The book accurately captures the adolescent angst. Interesting male character show complexity often missed in male characters.
371 reviews2 followers
May 20, 2019
Very good

The excellent saga continues in this second book. It has the hero continuing to search for answers about himself and the dreams that plague him as he discovers and homes his powers.
Profile Image for Sylina.
15 reviews
December 26, 2019

Yet another amazing book from Nicole Conway! She makes you fall in love with the characters and her descriptive capabilities never fail to impress. Really looking forward to the next book in the series!
359 reviews
March 2, 2021
Great scary book!

Felix remains Jae’s best friend. Lyon becomes the third boy in their room and there is a lot of tension in the room. Jae’s strange powers grow and get stranger. It’s so hard not writing spoilers.
41 reviews1 follower
July 16, 2017
Amazing second book, really enjoyed it, finished it in a day :)
Profile Image for Elad Levy.
14 reviews
September 4, 2017

This story captured my attention immediately, from the very first word to the last sentence, I was hooked! Highly recommended.
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