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Heartstrikers #2

One Good Dragon Deserves Another

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After barely escaping the machinations of his terrifying mother, two all knowing seers, and countless bloodthirsty siblings, the last thing Julius wants to see is another dragon. Unfortunately for him, the only thing more dangerous than being a useless Heartstriker is being a useful one, and now that he’s got an in with the Three Sisters, Julius has become a key pawn in Bethesda the Heartstriker’s gamble to put her clan on top.

Refusal to play along with his mother’s plans means death, but there’s more going on than even Bethesda knows, and with Estella back in the game with a vengeance, Heartstriker futures disappearing, and Algonquin’s dragon hunter closing in, the stakes are higher than even a seer can calculate. But when his most powerful family members start dropping like flies, it falls to Julius to defend the clan that never respected him and prove that, sometimes, the world’s worst dragon is the best one to have on your side.

487 pages, Kindle Edition

First published August 1, 2015

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About the author

Rachel Aaron

29 books2,659 followers
Hello, my name is Rachel Aaron, and I write the Heartstriker books, a new Urban Fantasy series about misfit dragons, starting with Nice Dragons Finish Last. I also wrote The Legend of Eli Monpress fantasy series for Orbit Books about a wizard thief and the poor bastards who have to try and stop him. PLUS I'm also the author of the new, rolicking fun Science Fiction romance Fortune's Pawn under the name Rachel Bach.

I was born in Atlanta, but I currently live a lovely, nerdy, bookish life in Denver, CO with my lightspeed son, perpetually understanding husband, and far too many plants. Besides my own books, the internet knows me best for writing very fast. The best way to get to know me is probably to read my blog or follow me on Twitter.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 619 reviews
Profile Image for Petrik.
664 reviews41.2k followers
May 21, 2018
4.5/5 stars

Simply a superb improvement in quality.

One Good Dragon Deserves Another is the second book in Rachel Aaron’s Heartstrikers series and it is a VAST improvement from the first book. The first book was a 3.5 stars read for me, this book received 4.5 stars (rounded up on Goodreads) from me. Urban fantasy is really not my favorite genre and that’s why I’m completely surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. The story itself isn’t even something special, it’s great of course, but it’s the combination of all the other elements in the book such as the characters, action sequences, world-building, and prose that made this book so damn compelling to read; everything just flows impeccably well.

It’s been a long time—a month and eleven books to be precise—since I was this engaged in reading a book. Heck, I even thought that I was near a reading slump or something because the past eleven books have been a mix of bad, mediocre, good, great, but none of them were amazing. The first book, Nice Dragons Finish Last, was a part of SPFBO #3 competition, it’s such a shame that the competition can only count the first book (understandable but still a shame) because this book alone, blew every book or winner (that I’ve read) in the history of the competition.

There simply isn’t any dull moment in the book. One of the missing aspect of the first book—despite it being fun—was an engaging and tense plotline, Aaron fixed this completely here, making the first book simply a prelude and introduction to the world, story, and characters. There were a lot of moving parts in the storyline and although Aaron finished the main storyline in this book, if you take a close look beneath the façade of the main story, it’s obvious that Aaron is saving a lot of plotline for future revelations; this means Bob’s grand plan surrounding Julius and I can’t wait to find out how it all will play out. The story was also tense but at the same time, it was still lighthearted, damn easy to follow, and never stop being fun and humorous at times.

“Help us, Juli-wan Kenobi, you're our only hope."
For a moment, that almost, almost made Julius feel like a hero. And then he remembered. "Doesn't Obi-Wan die in that movie?”

Don’t get me wrong, I love my books being serious, dark, or full of death. However, once in a while I still need a change of pace to lighter tone books and this series is a great choice. Aaron achieved this by writing superb characterizations for literally every character in the series. Every character has distinct voices and personality, they’re unique and none of them ever bore me. Once the characters made me feel invested, the story can be about literally anything and I would still end up loving it. There are a lot of fantastic character developments here, especially towards Marci, but the new characters—Amelia and Vann Jeger—were a wonderful addition to the series. I also need to talk about Bob again, although he didn’t appear a lot here, he’s still my favorite character and he always managed to steal every scene he’s in.

One of the most prominent differences between the first book and this one is its incredible action sequences. The battle against Vann Jeger for example was simply top notch. It was high scale, intense, fast-paced, immersive, and written really well. World-building also received a much better expositions with history surrounding the dragons, their birthplace, plus new information on the exclusive Heartstrikers’s special weapons, Fangs of the Heartstrikers, making this book filled with rich content.

Sequel-wise, this is seriously one of the strongest sequel I’ve ever read. Aaron pretty much improved upon everything she wrote in the first book and erased all the cons I had on the first book in this installment. There are no more repetitive sentences or a sense of the prose being clunky to read, her prose was so easy to read, compelling and never gets in the way of the story. I spotted literally only one typo in the book and that’s seriously an amazing achievement in self-published books.

I’m only two books into the series so far but Heartstrikers could seriously end up becoming the first self-published series to enter ‘my favorite series of all time’ list. Bob’s ability as a seer must’ve seen this happening and I sincerely hope I don’t jinx it or do something horrible to change the future of this prediction.

You can find this and the rest of my Adult Epic/High Fantasy & Sci-Fi reviews at BookNest
Profile Image for Gergana.
227 reviews390 followers
March 23, 2016
It's OFFICIAL! The Heartstrikers series now belongs to my shelf of Favorites! YEY!

Warning! This review contains lots of blabbering, fangirling and random fanarts (done by me, so no suing, ok? For higher res: gerynh.tumblr.com)


The story begins a few months after the first book ends and what a start it is! We finally get to meet Bethesda, the Boss/Mother of the Strongest Dragon Clan, and some of her older children! We also have a few epic Bob and Justin scenes that made me want to squeal! There was a short period (starting at around 30% up to almost the middle of the book) where there was just talking, info dump... and not much else. But in a few moments, everything changes and there is dragons fighting to the death! Followed by even more amazing scenes and character development and just pure awesomeness! Don't get me started on the last 10%!

Ok, ok, story - so Julius (the runt in his family and the only truly "nice" dragon in the world) and Marci (an ultra-powerful and easily-excitable magician, Julius's best friend and business partner) are having some "great" time saving stupid humans from love spells gone wrong and dangerous magical creatures. Things aren't perfect, but Julius has never been happier in his life, far away from family expectations. UNTIL! Until he's whisked away by his mother to the Hearstrikers stronghold and forced to participate in dragon "politics". As if Julius isn't mortified enough being in such proximity to his older, more aggressive and power-hungry siblings, he also has to deal with members of the Three Sisters clan trying to kill him and a scary premonition about the destruction of all Heartstrikers. And where on earth is Justin?



Julius and Marci

Julius - If there was a character I was slightly concerned about, it was Julius. I was worried that his "nice"-ness will start to annoy me, that he wouldn't grow as a character and that I'll get tired with him being so kind and considerate. I know a few of my GR friends were still a little bit disappointed in the end, but I wasn't! Julius DID evolve for me and, best of all, he learnt to stand up for what he believes in, no matter what. He doesn't lecture everyone anymore (but when he does try, it's hilarious!), he is not afraid to fight for his friends and I really enjoyed seeing the dragon side of his personality! I definitely like him even more now! (And don't get me started on the last 10%)

Marci - Marci's actually pretty awesome here, I'm really curious to see how her and Ghost's story will develop in the third book. I'm glad to see her proving to be super useful and not bragging about it as much. Plus, she's perfect for Julius and they are adorable together!

Marci and Julius

Justin - I loved loved loved Justin! I almost regret not seeing more of him and Julius interacting! Despite being clutch-mates, Justin can be the complete opposite of his "nice" little brother and their quarrels and misunderstandings are hilarious!

Justin and Julius

Sometimes it feels like Justin is the comic-relief character, but, apart from Julius, for me he's the most loyal and, actually, the nicest Heartstriker around. He cares about his siblings far more than he lets on and he IS willing to go overboard for his family, even for his mother. Nevertheless, he's still rather overambitious and full of himself, a typical dragon.

Julius and Justin

Bethesda - We also finally get to meet the Mum! The big Dragon Boss of the most powerful clan in the world. Bethesda is one brutal and ferocious hell of a lady, who doesn't mind manipulating her own children and getting rid off them if they disappoint her...I also accidentally drew her looking a bit too young. But then again, dragons don't really age.


Amelia - Another new addition to the cast is Amelia! The eldest of Bethesda's children and the heir of the Heartstriker's clan. And I ADORE her! XD


Despite being one of the most powerful (and crazy) dragons around, she isn't that interested in gaining her mother's favor (or overthrowing her). Amelia would much rather prefer to spend her days on a tropical beach, drinking alcohol and enjoying the peace and quiet.Unfortunately, being the sole survivor of Bethesda's first clutch, she's also her mother's biggest threat (and main target for her assassins).

Bethesda and Amelia

Conrad - Bethesda's bodyguard and the largest dragon in the family. I am intrigued by Conrad, hope we get to see more of him in the third book.

Chelsie and Conrad

Chelsie - I wish I had an overly protective older sister like Chelsie! Who knew that Bethesda's cold-blooded assassin will have a soft spot for her little brothers. Haha, anyways, Chelsie was brilliant in this book! She was one of those characters that I thought were very 1-dimensional and predictable when I started the series - I was, of course, completely wrong. By the end of the first book, I knew the characters, especially the ruthless and nasty dragon-siblings, were more complicated than they first appeared, but now, my heart is shattering into tiny little pieces thinking about

I also wonder... what happened in China? XD

Bob - My absolute favorite character! (Justin is close behind though). Bob is the Seer of his family (think - diviner). He might appear as the most cheerful, easy-going (and rather crazy) Heartstriker at first, but when Estella starts taking down one sibling after another, we also get to see his more serious and dangerous side - he IS after all the second oldest child of Bethesda. He's also the one pulling the strings behind the curtain (unless another Seer, like Estella, ruins his carefully orchestrated plans).

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The best part about Bob is that he's a complete mystery for me, even now. I still have no idea whether he actually cares about Julius (or anyone else apart from Amelia) or if he's just using him to achieve his goals. Can't wait to find out more!

There were a few more dragons, but this review is getting even longer than the one I did for the first book, so I'll skip them.


A couple of problems I had with this book

Estella - is the oldest child of the Three Sisters Clan and the Seer in her family. I feel like she had such a great potential to be one of my favorite characters in the series. Unfortunately, we don't really have the opportunity to get to know her and her motivations.

Estela is the main antagonist in this book and she harbors a great hatred towards the Heartstrikers. We also know that she was Bob's childhood crush and that they never really got together (no spoilers). Despite all this, she has still kept his gifts throughout the centuries, so my question is – WHY was she willing to in order to destroy the Heartstrikers? Was it because of Bob, was it something Bethesda did? I can go on forever, it just really bothered me that we didn't get more of her backstory and the reasoning behind her actions. I would like to think that

The Dragons - What do they look like? XD I tended to imagine them as normal dragons only with feathers, but now I think they're more humanoid than I first pictured them? Just confused, that's all. Please share if you have an idea.


Final thoughts - Second book was even better than the first one. The pacing was a lot better, the characters (Julius and Marci) that I found slightly boring compared to the rest are far more compelling now, the world-building was a little bit lacking (in case you're wondering), but we do get to know more about dragon origins and customs, which I totally dig! Overall, an excellent and highly entertaining read which was made even better through my audiobook experience.


Audiobook - The audiobook is once again brilliant! The narrator, Vikas Adam, adds so much to the humor and to the personality of the characters, I doubt the voice in my head will be able to be as hilarious. And best of all, he can do multiple and completely different voice for each character, I can tell who's speaking way before the „said xxxxx“. I definitely recommend checking the audio version for this book! Just make sure you don't listen to it in public places (I laughed out loud so many times that people started glaring daggers at me)...


It was a fantastic experience!
YES! I will get the third book.
YES! I will reread the series (might be sooner than I expected)
YES! I would get a hardcover copy (if there are any one day), but for now, I'll try to get the paperbacks.
And a HUUUUUUGE YES! I WOULD recommend the series to my friends! I might have had a few complains for the first book, but seeing how much I love the second one, I can guarantee, it is one amazing adventure!

Julius, Bob and Estella

PS: Julius hiding behind Bob was the cutest thing EVER!
Profile Image for Robin (Bridge Four).
1,588 reviews1,467 followers
April 25, 2017
5 count them 5 Stars


This series is a lot of fun for me and delightfully entertaining. I wish I would have written a review as soon as I finished so I remembered all the great deets, but alas there are so many books and I forgot I hadn’t stopped to tell everyone how great this one is.


I’m usually not a huge fan of beta boys. Overall they can be a little boring, but not Julian, he has so much chaos going on around him there is no time for him to be boring at all. Everything in this story happens in a matter of days and so it all goes pretty fast and very nonstop and Julian gets thrown into the middle of it all. I blame Bob, Julian should blame Bob too since his brother and the Seer of the Heartstriker clan has positioned Julian into the middle of all of his machinations.
Schemes to foil, plots to thwart, naps to resume, you know how it is.

This book really developed more of the world and all of the magic in it. It was crazy all of the magical battles and finding out what Marci’s ghost cat really is. I was surprised so very surprised and a little bit afraid to be honest. I found this to have some greatly original ideas in it that were totally cool. Plus we get to meet a few more of Julian’s siblings and I think all of them are a little on the terrifying side, especially when one takes an interest in Marci.

But one of the things I totally loved and that made me bump up my rating (which was at 5 stars anyway so I guess we are at 5.5 stars now) was this…. You know that moment in so many books that you read when Geeky Girl A is given an ultimatum by Bad Guy B and they are painted into a corner with the choice they make. Then there is that moment when they think I should confess to Cute Boy C what just happened but then they decide that NO bad idea I’ll just hide it and then later at Inopportune Time D someone else can out their secret and then Emotionally Manipulated Scene E happens and Robin’s Eyeroll of Disappointment F happens.

We all know that trope well right??? And I thought it was going to happen in this and I was pre-internally groaning because I was so disappointed since I was loving the story. AND THEN the strangest thing happened. THE CHARACTERS COMMUNICATED, they actually had a grown up conversation and then worked as a team to solve it.


Needless to say that made me love the characters in this even more and I liked that there wasn’t any insta love. There is attraction between Julius and Marci and there is a friendship there first and foremost so that it is believable that they have feelings for one another and that those feelings might be changing into something more romantic. I love how they work with one another and try to let the other person be who they are and trust them. Plus I really get who Marci is and I love her super excitable and inquisitive nature
“You mean like dragon healing magic?” Marci asked excitedly. “Cool! How does that work?”
Julius couldn’t help but grin at that. Leave it to Marci to be more excited about the magical part of her magical first aid than the actual aid. “You’ll have to ask her,” he said, nodding at Ysolde, who’d gotten her orders from Katya and was now walking toward them at a stately pace.
It didn’t seem possible, but Marci looked even more excited than before. “Eeeee! Is that one of the Daughters of the Three Sisters?! She looks like a freaking Valkyrie! This was totally worth getting smacked into a wall for!”

There are some really great and crazy plots going on it this and I am so excited to continue on with this series. What an unexpected Gem

Profile Image for Mary ~Ravager of Tomes~.
347 reviews923 followers
April 13, 2018
Actual Rating: 4.5 Stars

So this is the installment where the series really grabs you by the face, sits you down, and forces you to see a much bigger picture than you thought possible.

I'm sort of amazed, because I've never had such a great relationship with any Urban Fantasy I've picked up before this one.

The first & most noticeable difference for me personally was the huge improvement in Aaron's writing style. Where there were patches of unnecessary repetition & occasional over-description, the overall feel of this novel was much more smooth & concise. I'm actually quite impressed to see an author close such a gap in the span of only one book!

Given the tone of the first one, I wasn't 100% sure the story would venture into such escalated territory and I've never been happier to be so wrong. The stakes in this book jumped from maybe a 3-4 to a full-fledged 10, which is exactly what I needed to happen to bring this series to the next level for me.

As with the first, I still stand by the idea that the characters are one of the absolute best aspects of the series. It's bursting at the seams with a diverse & ever-growing cast, each so individual & realistic to interact with.

It's not often that a clear character preference doesn't emerge after I get my bearings in a series, but truly I enjoyed everyone and I can only find myself looking forward to how they will grow & develop.

Speaking of characters, my feelings about Marci specifically have changed. I did like her in Nice Dragons Finish Last, but in this book she really stood out for me. Marci is quirky & intelligent, and she's grown a lot on her own, but also her relationship with Ghost is developing into something worthwhile & it's quite fascinating to be party to.

My only real qualm with this book is that there are a large number of events that all cram themselves into a very short space of time. The sequence of events seems like it should take much longer than it does, and that resulted in the progression of time feeling a bit clunky to me.

If Nice Dragons Finish Last did not grip you, I implore you to give this second book a chance before writing the series off. It's addictive & charming in its eccentricity with plenty of fire to back up its smoke!
Profile Image for Choko.
1,178 reviews2,569 followers
February 22, 2023
*** 5 ***

I just finished listening to the second book of the Heartstriker family dragon saga and I am stoked!!! This is turning out to be one of my favorite new series. Ms Aaron has found the right map to my heart and it is populated with dragons!!!
Although I love Julian, him being all idealistic and adorable and all, Marcy is still the stronger character and her potential is unlimited. But I am I love with Chelsy and Katia!!! They stole the show for me in this one, upstaged only by the oldest Heartstriker daughter - now there is a lady I would love to guzzle some Margaritas with!!!
I do feel bad for the entire white dragon clan after all the colemeties at the end and hope our guys help them settle the score.

If there was something I was not too found of, it was the ruling committee that everyone agreed on for the Heartstrikers. It doesn't seem like a good idea for a clan of power crazy, manipulating, egocentric and back stabbing dragons to rely on consensus for law and order... I foresee many issues because of it and it will make a dent in Julian-Marcy relationship...

The dude who does the narration of the Audible version of the book is amazing!!! He is a perfect fit for the characters and I thoroughly enjoyed it!!!

I know I sound very fangirly, but I really had fun with this one and am very impatient to. get the next one! Recommend it for fans of fantasy in urban setting and DRAGONS!!! Need I say more?
Profile Image for Mogsy (MMOGC).
2,005 reviews2,597 followers
September 16, 2015
5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum http://bibliosanctum.com/2015/08/04/b...

I had to wait at least a day after finishing One Good Dragon Deserves Another to write my review, lest I just end up gushing incoherently like a madwoman. That’s because this book was simply amazing. Not only did it manage to be even better than the first book – a magnificent achievement in itself, considering how awesome Nice Dragons Finish Last was and how much I already loved it to pieces – it’s also now vying for the top spot in my list of best books read in 2015.

This sequel takes place not long after the events of book one. Our protagonist Julius, the youngest and nicest dragon in the Heartstriker clan, is feeling happier than he’s ever been in his entire life. Working out of the Detroit Free Zone as a magical pest control specialist with the help of his friend and mage partner Marci, it feels oh so good to be finally free of his tyrant mother and all his cutthroat siblings. But unfortunately for Julius, this respite doesn’t last; before long he’s sucked back into the dragon-eat-dragon world of Bethesda the Heartstriker, and used as a political pawn in a war against a rival clan.

If you think your family is dysfunctional, you should see Julius’. To Bethesda, who values strength and ruthlessness, her youngest son is a total failure of a dragon and she never misses a chance to let him know exactly how she feels. If it weren’t for the efforts of his more forgiving siblings, she would have made a snack out of Julius years ago. But for all that, Bethesda is still his mother, and Julius only wants the best for his clan. When Estella, dragon seer and head of The Three Sisters starts laying an obvious trap for the leader of the Heartstrikers, Julius becomes frustrated that Bethesda’s pride is blinding her to all dangers.

It took only the first chapter to remind me instantly of how astonishingly unique, creative, and addictive this world is. That said, it’s Rachel Aaron so I would have expected nothing less. Everything I’ve read by her thus far from The Spirit Thief to the Paradox sci-fi trilogy she published under her name Rachel Bach have all been bursting at the seams with original and intriguing ideas. But she’s outdone even herself with these Heartstriker books.

My first instincts is to call this Urban Fantasy, but that’s just a small slice of the big picture. There’s also a post-apocalyptic component with traces of mythical lore combined with sci-fi elements. Throw in magic, dragons, and a healthy dose of humor (I laughed out loud so many times – HARD), and that’s still just barely scratching the surface. Not many authors can set out to do something this ambitious and deliver it with such finesse and aplomb. It goes without saying that world-building was fantastic in this book, giving Aaron plenty of opportunities to expand upon the way magic works here, and also answer plenty of questions about dragon history.

And then there are the characters. Where do I even begin? Being the stars of the show, it probably comes as no surprise that I absolutely adored both Julius and Marci. Julius is as lovable as ever and Marci totally steals the show in this book by kicking so much magical ass. But I was also excited when I saw the many familiar faces returning for this sequel. Oh my goodness, Justin! And Bob! Even Chelsie, who is now my new hero, and Ghost, who may have single-handedly turned me into a cat person overnight. Even the villains are superb in this series, from Estella the North Star to the spirit baddies like Algonquin and her top dragon hunter Vann Jeger.

Of course, no character discussion is complete without also a nod to Julius’s big sister Amelia, introduced in this book as the heir to Heartstriker. As part of A-clutch, this makes her one of the oldest and most powerful dragons in the clan, second only to Bethesda herself. She’s also nothing like I expected. It’s not my place to spoil Amelia’s big debut so I’ll leave it at that, but suffice to say it wouldn’t surprise me if after this book she ends up with a pretty sizeable fan club. Like every character in these novels, she is compelling and memorable – a good thing too, considering Julius’ huge family and the number of siblings that play a part in his story.

As an avid Urban Fantasy reader, I just fell in love with this book. Perhaps it’ll come as no surprise that the story has all the action, comedy and thrills you would expect; after all, I’m addicted to this genre precisely because it is so consistently fun and entertaining. But if you want originality and truly stellar storytelling as well? Then there is no contest – this series stands out way above the rest.

What’s even more impressive is that these books are self-published, a personal project by Rachel Aaron. I sincerely wish her the best on her endeavors, because this series deserves all the attention and praise I can give. One Good Dragon Deserves Another blew me away with a plot that just kept on giving and giving, taking me on a wild ride through several arcs that nonetheless fit together so well, with surprising revelations aplenty and underdog heroes to root for every step of the way. Highly, highly recommended!
Profile Image for TS Chan.
694 reviews861 followers
July 25, 2018
The sequel to Nice Dragons Finish Last was an improvement in every way possible. There is just so much more of everything which made the last book enjoyable that the series is shaping up to be a fantastic one.

The worldbuilding was more expansive as we get to see and learn more about the magic of dragons and of the spirits of the earth. Rachel Aaron has created a really unique setting for this series and the backstory of how dragons ended up on earth was truly captivating. Even though the exposition can sometimes come across as a bit of an info-dump, I was too happily lapping it all up to be really bothered about it.

The development of the characters was wonderful. While Julius was still as nice as ever, you just cannot mistake him for being weak and definitely not stupid. With the machination of his oldest brother, who was one of three dragon seers ever in existence, Julius was placed as the central chess-piece towards an endgame which relied on his unique un-draconic personality to succeed. It was frankly quite masterful.

Marci's magic potential grew by leaps and bounds, and what was even more intriguing was the development of her relationship with her spirit (which comes in the form of a ghost cat). This is definitely one human to watch out for. The growth of her romantic relationship with Julius was also handled well. I hate plot devices where characters don't communicate or talk things through. Fortunately, this was not an issue here.

Julius' older siblings were truly the icing on the cake. Crazy Amelia the Planeswalker, quirky Bob the Seer, awesome Chelsie the Shade and obnoxious Justin the Knight/Champion – each and every one of them is great in their own special way and they were much more fully explored in this instalment.

About one-third in, the ever-escalating events made it ever so hard to put the book down. There were loads of revelations and cool action set-pieces replete with awesome displays of magic. And it was all wrapped up in an exciting edge-of-the-seat climax which was then followed by an earth-shattering event. I am absolutely hooked on Heartstrikers now.

This review can also be found at Booknest
Profile Image for Celeste.
887 reviews2,335 followers
April 4, 2018
Full review now posted!

I didn’t realize how much I needed dragons in my life. Man, this book was so much fun. It was everything I was hoping to find in the first book, and then some.

My issues with the writing feeling unpolished and clunky in the first book were completely non-existent in this follow-up. The prose transcended being simple sentences on a page and disappeared, until I wasn’t seeing words on a page but instead saw the events of the book playing out like a movie in mind. That is the highest compliment I can pay to a fantasy novelist whose prose is merely a vehicle for the story they’re telling, such as Brandon Sanderson. While I love beautiful prose, like that crafted by Rothfuss and Kay, I also appreciate stories that become so real in my mind that the prose disappears.

There was so much character development in this book. Seriously, the characters we met in the first book were cute and interesting, but a bit two-dimensional. In this second book, they are fleshed out so well that I feel like they’re actually friends of mine. I love that feeling, and it’s something that’s often hard to inspire through the written word, so I applaud Aaron for that.

Julius, the world’s nicest dragon, is growing into himself and beginning to stand up for what he believes. As one of the youngest, smallest dragons in the Heartstriker clan, he is often overlooked or viewed as weak due to his kindness. But he is a dragon to watch, and his kindness is most definitely not weakness. Julius is intelligent and crafty and loyal, and those traits inspire loyalty in others.

Then we have Marci, who is a firecracker of a human mage with a weird spirit bound to her. She’s Julius’s friend and business partner, and they have the hots for each other. (It’s adorable). Marci is loyal and incredibly intelligent, but she’s also fool-hardy and headstrong, which often leads to trouble. I’ll be honest; I found her just the teensiest bit annoying in the first book. Not so here! She was sassy and emotional and intelligent and talented and loyal and strong, and just all-in-all a very well-rounded character.

While these two are our main characters, we also have the other dragons, be they Heartstrikers or Daughters of the Three Sisters. We get character development from Justin, Julius’s closest brother and the Knight of the Heartstrikers; Chelsie, Bethesda’s Shade and the most terrifying dragon in the Heartstriker clan, but one with a soft spot for her “nice” baby brother; and Katya, the youngest Daughter of the Three Sisters and the unlikely ally and friend of Julius. We also have Amelia, a new dragon mage on the scene. She is immensely talented and incredibly quirky, choosing to spend the majority of her time drunk and on other planes of existence until recent events brought her back to her own.

And then there’s Bob. Bob is just about the most eccentric character I’ve come across in any book, and I love him for it. Even though he acts like he hasn’t a care in the world, you can see the scarily sharp mind behind the facade. He’s a puppet master, playing everyone using his amazing abilities as one of the three dragon seers on the planet. But while dragons all always out for their own good, Bob is determined to also do what’s best for his family, the Heartstriker clan. I have to say, though, that I’m dying to see how the pigeon comes into play. That has to be one of the weirdest pets ever.

This was a compelling story, and it’s a series I can’t wait to continue. Especially since the next book should provide some backstory on Chelsie, who is absolutely fascinating. What I love most about this series is its brightness. It’s fun and light. Is there tension and drama? Yes. Any book without those components would be boring and feel meaningless. But I always felt certain that things would all work out in the end. There’s just a levity to the series that’s refreshing. So much of the fantasy genre is dark, and even though I love the genre, it’s like a breath of fresh air to find something this light. Also, there’s a severe lack of dragons in urban fantasy, and I really love seeing them in this setting. I highly recommend this series to anyone looking for something hopeful in the fantasy genre.
Profile Image for Lila.
835 reviews9 followers
August 30, 2015

The littlest dragon and his benevolent family are finally back!

.....and they are crazier than ever. :)


Longer wait for sequel totally paid off, because this book was pure, unadulterated fun. :)

OGDDA is set only a month after the events of first book, just enough for Julius to become comfortable thinking he wiggled out from Bethesda's claws....before it all goes to hell. Dragon politics is like a mix between Game of Thrones and Survivor and Marcy and our baby dragon are dragged right in the middle of it. Oh, and there is also pesky little annoyance of Alongquin's famous Dragon Hunter after Julius.

Book #2>>>>Book #1
I think I flew through this in one sitting, because, simply, it was hard to put it down. Story picks up pace right from the start and considering there is a time stamp on our characters, they can't catch a breather. Plot was definitely more complex and convoluted comparing to first book, but immensely more fun because of it. There is this part where we finally get some more explanation about magic system and origins of dragons, and while it should have been info-dumpy, I found it really interesting and easy to understand. Can we have drunk Amelia's lectures always?
I loved the idea about DFZ from book #1 and here we got some more explanation of reasons behind Alongquin's actions and reclamation business and I am really looking forward to read where will author take her story next.
One of my favorite things was Marci- I was kind of indifferent toward her after first book, but she came into her own here. She was going toe to toe with predators and she was smart, geeky and awesome all at once. Ghost and her became serious players and I really like how author evened the ground between her and Julius and other dragons.
But, it's not just the fact that Aaron stepped up her game considerably expanding her world-building and bringing some new elements to the table- this is the book where we really see why series is called Heartstrikers; this is where readers become truly invested not just in Julius, but in his entire clan. The story is all about Heartstrikers and their weird family dynamic. I freaking love Julius's siblings: Bob(duh!), Justin(, newly introduced Amelia (A-melia) and new favorite Chelsie (what the hell happened in China? ;) ), have a lot of page time and I could have read ten times more pages of their banter.

Did I mention that Bob is the best?
"Thank you for contacting
Everyone’s Favorite Heartstriker! Alas, all of our seers are busy at the moment.
Fortunately for you, I already know what you’re calling about. Rest assure that Your Concern will be addressed in the order in which it was received.
Assuming I care and/or remember.
Hearts and kisses, your infallible

Seriously, not a dull moment. :)

Profile Image for Kitty G Books.
1,548 reviews2,934 followers
November 13, 2017
This is one of those series I just find a whole heap of fun. It's filled with exciting ideas about bloodthirsty dragons, the lady of the lake, humans, mages and more. the first book I definitely enjoyed more than I anticipated, and this one was exactly the same. Filled with action and drama and lots of good twists from the Dragon Seers who can influence the future. I just think it's pretty great.

We're once more following Julius, one of the youngest Heartstrikers Dragons who is currently sealed because he annoyed his mother, the great leader of the Heartstrikers. She's trapped him in mortal form and so he's living with a human and trying to make a business from magic and helping people, He's just a bit too nice.
Suddenly, his mother shows up and tells him she needs him so he's dragged off to be a part of a large meeting between the two most powerful dragon clans. He ends up getting dragged back into the drama far more than he wanted to, and things get even more mad after that.

What I enjoy about this is that Aaron manages to make this a really exciting story which is filled with quirky moments and characters, but it also seems to flow and be written really well. It's a super solid plot-line, and a very fun adventure which spans multiple places and follows a whole host of characters, but with that said i's also super easy to get into and just enjoy.

I would really recommend this is you're looking for a lighter but enjoyable read with some different approaches to Dragon-kind. A great series and one I will certainly keep reading. 4*s overall :)
Profile Image for Eon ♒Windrunner♒  .
418 reviews459 followers
March 18, 2021
One Good Dragon Deserves Another is simply a sublime sequel.

I thoroughly enjoyed book one in The Heartstrikers series and was eagerly looking forward to more of the same with Rachel Aaron's follow up book, One Good Dragon Deserves Another. Lucky for me, the author not only delivered on this expectation, but she also blew it out of the water! This book has every chance to be in my top ten at the end of the year! I LOVED IT.

Every single department got an upgrade. Worldbuilding? Expanded in a myriad of ways. Action? Hell yeah, serious magic displays and dragon fights and scary-ass creatures! Plot? Gripping and unpredictable! Characterization? Top-notch and lots of development! Writing? Immersive, perfectly paced, and improved from book one! All the things, friends, all the things.

I don't even know what to expand upon. The truth is, I just loved every aspect of this book so much. And did I mention the dragons? And the magic too? Rachel Aaron even gives us a delicious hunk of dragon lore and history, spilling the beans on their origins and showing... Nope, leaving that as a surprise! What more do you need to read this series if you have not yet done so???

If those aren't enough though, then just read it for the characters. Julius and Marci are fantastic, and yet they are just one great piece of a wonderful whole. Some of Julius’s siblings started to shine in this one, and I found myself firmly rooting for them, despite having little to no love for them in the first book. Ok, it’s Chelsie. I’m talking about Chelsie. I had not the slightest idea I would become such a fan but I love her now.
The moment she stepped into the shadow, she was simply gone, leaving only the empty grass swaying in the evening breeze. “Wow,” Marci said. “What is she, Heartstriker Batman?”

Ghost, the spirit cat, was never to be outdone by all these great characters and holds his own easily. He seems to be constantly evolving and at the same time forging his bond with Marci into something new. I could read about Ghost all day long. But wait, there’s more! :) I have not even mentioned Bob, the 800 years old Seer of the clan who is officially the most interesting and fun character in this series.
Bob rolled his eyes. “Newsflash, Julius. Someone is always trying to destroy our clan. We’re always on the brink of some disaster or another, and yet we always pull through. It’s almost as though we have someone in the know. A brilliant, handsome, vigilant dragon with the vision to see what’s coming and the daring to do what must be done.” He struck a dramatic pose as he finished, and Julius sighed.

I, uh, want to rave about Amelia and Justin as well, but we could be here all day if I carry on like this.

The thing I love the most about this series though is how much of a good time reading it provides. I honestly can’t remember the last time I laughed so much during a fantasy that still provided all the thrills of gripping, action-packed escapism combined with wonderful characterization, and I want more. One Good Dragon Deserves Another is everything a sequel should be. I may have a few more books to go, but I can already say Rachel Aaron has created a gem of a series and single-handedly renewed my faith in the urban fantasy genre. Guess what I'm reading next? ;)

You can find this review and more at Novel Notions
Profile Image for Kathleen.
1,329 reviews29 followers
October 20, 2015
4.5 stars. Very good! Maybe even better than the first book in the series. Marci the Mage (move over, Merlin) and Julius the truly "noble" dragon (kind and wise) are back, even stronger, and with a hint of romance. We see more of secondary characters Bob / Brohomir the Seer, Chelsea the Shade, Justin the warrior, etc. We meet Amelia, A-Clutch dragon Mage. Fun character! We also meet the Lady of the Lake -- Algonquin, and Vann Jager her dragon hunter. Learn more about dragon history, and about Ghost the cat spirit, and more about the Heartstriker grandfather Quetzlcoatl, murdered by his own daughter Bethsesda. Villains are credible (Estella the Icy, etc). Battles engrossing. Justice satisfying.

A fun story, fast paced, funny, snarky, engrossing.

Quibbles: Just a bit too long, with a little more internal dialogue than I like. The last chapter's political discussion went too long, I thought.

Excellent narration. I read and listened, interchangably.
Profile Image for Maria Dimitrova.
744 reviews139 followers
April 2, 2016
When is the release date for the next book? I need to know! Waiting for months after an ending like this is going to be hard. So I guess I found a new series to obssess over. Boiled down to the basics the plot is the same as the previous book - Bob manipulates everyone so Julius can screw over Estella's plans. However the details made OGDDA impossible to put it down. We got to meet a few more of the upper alphabet members of the Heartstrikers, learn a bit more about spirits (and Ghost in particular), visit the homeplane of the dragons and enjoy the witty banter of the MCs. All in all it was as good as the first one, maybe even a little bit better. I strongly recommend it for fans of urban fantasy and dragons of all kind.
Profile Image for Tammie.
1,306 reviews149 followers
October 1, 2017
My daughters and I were all very excited to listen to One Good Dragon Deserves Another on our holiday road trip. We loved the first book in the series and really enjoyed the narrator. We were not disappointed; this second book in the series is just as good as the first one was and once again the narrator does a great job. One great thing is that my daughter, who doesn't really care to read very much, really likes listening to these.

It was a nice treat to revisit Julius, Marcy, Ghost Cat (whom we learned some interesting things about), and all the other characters. We are all looking forward to book three.

Review also posted at Writings of a Reader
Profile Image for Lisa.
346 reviews533 followers
November 4, 2015
Review from Tenacious Reader: http://www.tenaciousreader.com/2015/1...

3.5/5 stars

What can I say? I really hoped to love this one as many of my trusted blogger friends did. And while I did enjoy it over all I definitely did not love it. I have had a hard time deciding exactly why that is, and it may just come down to I find Julius a bit boring and I got a little sick of the whole “nice dragon” thing. While things get “hard” for him during the book, I feel like the solutions almost seem to come easy or conveniently. I have always preferred dark books with troubled protagonists, so really maybe the biggest surprise should be how much I enjoyed the first. Now, that doesn’t mean I never like nice characters, I just am way more interested in the ones that have shades of grey to them. Perhaps the first book just worked better for me because everything was new and fresh. Since much of that has already been established by the time you get to book 2, I just didn’t have as much to learn about the world in this book and then too much of my enjoyment was reliant on the characters and plot. The plot was good! But the resolution is something I can have a harder time with.

I am having a difficult time determining how to best write this review, because I feel like my chief complaint is actually a feature of the book and not really a fault. It comes down to reading and character preferences. Or maybe I was just crabby when I was listening to it (I don’t really think that’s the case, and ultimately it doesn’t matter, because my reaction is what it is)

While there are some very interesting aspects to the world, I honestly think it is the characters and their relationships that don’t work as well for me. I think so many of them almost feel simple, like caricatures, which leaves me feeling disconnected. This type of story telling and character presentation can work very well for many readers, so I don’t even want to fault it for that. But if you are like me, and generally not interested in fairy tale style stories, it may not work quite as well for you. (I feel I need to add a disclaimer, there are some stories I’ve read that have a real fairy tale aspect to them that I have enjoyed, but typically it is the dark and twisted fairy tales that work for me).

Now, don’t take my initial negativity as a sign that all is wrong with this book. I still love Marci. She has a wonderful personality and we also get to learn a lot more about Ghost (her spirit cat) in this book. I am always a fan of cat characters for some reason. They are usually so full of attitude, it’s just hard not love them. So getting more details on Ghost was certainly very interesting. There’s definitely more to that cat than you realized and I would be interested to see how that may impact future story lines.

While I find myself rather indifferent to Julius’ brothers, I may have been a bit more interested in his sister Amelia. Being an ‘A’ name, that means she is one of Bethesda’s oldest children. Her and Marci actually find some common ground, so since I really enjoy Marci, I have to admit, that worked in Amelia’s favor. Plus, she is pretty kick ass all on her own. Very old, powerful dragon that has some tricks up her sleeve.

Overall, I think if you enjoyed book 1, definitely give this one a try. From what I have seen, my reaction is more negative than most of the others I know that have read it.

Profile Image for Kit (Metaphors and Moonlight).
876 reviews120 followers
April 16, 2019
4 Stars

This was a great continuation of the series!

I liked all the same great things that I liked in the first book. The dragons were cool. The plot and pacing were excellent and kept me gripped and wanting more. The characters were unique and interesting and mostly likeable, despite whatever flaws they may have. There was even some humor throughout the book; these books aren't too heavy, at least not so far in the series.

What really stood out this time though was the whole cast of characters and seeing so many of the Heartstriker siblings work together. It turns out they're not all as bad as Julius originally thought. Some of them show in this book that they clearly are capable of caring about one another, whether they'll admit it or not. Like Chelsie, who is universally feared as the enforcer but who finds loop holes to get out of killing siblings who don't deserve it. And Justin, who is hard-headed and prideful but who's been there for Julius when he needed help. And Amelia, who is a typical dragon in many ways but who can recognize and return loyalty when she finds it. And of course Julius, the nice dragon, and Marci, the enthusiastic mage, were still such easy characters to like and root for.

We even got to learn more about the world, the magic/spirits, and the dragons' homeland in this one. It turns out Marci's spirit cat, Ghost, is not exactly the little death spirit she thought he was, but I won't say any more than that because I don't want to spoil anything ;-)

Anyway, this is turning out to be a great series so far with lots of action, lots of magic, and lots of lovable characters!

Recommended For:
Fans of Book 1 in Rachel Aaron's Heartstrikers series. Anyone who likes dragon shifters, magic, a whole cast of unique characters, a fast-paced story, and some unique futuristic world-building.

Original Review @ Metaphors and Moonlight
Profile Image for Mihir.
645 reviews295 followers
December 28, 2017
Overall rating = 4.5 stars

Full review over at Fantasy Book Critic

Read my in-depth interview with Rachel Aaron as she reveals some starling factoids and secrets of the Heartstriker series & world.

CLASSIFICATION: The Heartstriker series is an action-packed urban fantasy series with a strong dose of comedy, post-apocalyptic SF themes and dragons.

ANALYSIS: Ever since I got my hands on The Spirit Thief, the debut book by Rachel Aaron, I’ve been enchanted by the worlds she imagines and the characters that inhabit them. When she announced this new series, I was very much looking forward to it with a lot of curiosity. After reading Nice Dragons Finish Last, I was thrilled to bits with the new series.

One Good Dragon Deserves Another or OGDDA as the abbreviation goes is the brilliant follow up to Nice Dragons Finish Last (NDFL). It's a cracker of a sequel that basically starts within a month of the climax of NDFL and basically widens up the world, and story in every way possible. I’ll be discussing some plot points of the story which will be spoiler-ish so please be forewarned of it.

The plot opens up with Julius and Marci happily forming a partnership and being able to do their job as curse-removal specialists. The problem arises when Bethesda returns to the DFZ and grabs Julius to go with her to a special meeting. Which turns out to be the upcoming nuptials (of sorts) of Ivan Heartstriker and Svena White Witch of the Three sisters. While this happy event is a very perfunctory one, it turns out Bob being a seer has invited a special dragon to this ceremony. That dragon being Amelia, who is the only surviving member of the A clutch and a mighty dragon in herself. While Julius is unaware of who she is, he does get to know her and is bemused by her interest in him.

Things however take a horrible turn when Estella, the oldest daughter of the Three sisters returns and hatches a plan to defeat Bob at his seer game. It will be up to Julius, Marci, Bob and the rest to help the Hearstriker clan survive the coming onslaught while also trying to survive Algonquin’s hunter who has a special interest in killing dragons.

This book in a word was "magnificent" and here's why:
a) It gives us the whole backstory about the dragons and why there seems to be so much infighting among dragon clans
b) Why Algonquin the lady of the lakes and other spirits hate the dragons so much
c) How does mankind fit into the magic equation

All of the above and much more is laid bare for the reader and the author truly gives us two protagonists to root for. This time Julius shares the spotlight with Marci who is frankly fantastic as a protagonist. The previous book focused on Julius and while it was a fun read. With OGDDA, Marci takes center stage and we get a stronger, multi-faceted story. The book’s cover kind of highlights this new shift and Marci also learns so much more from her association with Ghost. How and when this happens, is possibly the most surprising twist and only the second most shocking part of the story.

The story also focuses on Bob, Justin, Chelsie, Ghost and couple of other major characters. The character cast is suitably widened and I loved this aspect of the story-line. Bob, I believe is a character that is such a hit and in this volume, we get to know more about him and his powers. This just made me love Bob more even when he’s at his most infuriating. There’s also a strong light shined on Chelsie who has so far remained in the shadows and we kind of get an inkling why that is. Lastly the plot reveals the magical history of the world as well as the backstory of the Dragons. This revelation makes so much sense from a world-building point of view and has me intrigued for further exploration.

The story takes a suitable dark turn within a few pages of its start and Rachel Aaron does keep the tension evenly strung throughout the story. This book very much reads like a Jeffrey Deaver thriller wherein the entire plot unfolds over two to three days and the twists come left, right & center. This book possibly is the most twisted story-line that Rachel has written so far (among the 10 fiction books she has written so far). I couldn’t quite keep with all the happenings as there’s a seer battle going on as one of them reiterates “you can never be too sure with a seer”. The story unfolds at a wicked pace and the readers will be racing along to find what truly is happening.

Lastly while the book ends on a very surprising note, it’s the epilogue that’s the real stunner and I mean it. After all the twists and revelations that the main plot has in it, the last few paragraphs of the epilogue reveal so much more and further deepen the world and magic system so to speak. After finishing the book, I can only imagine the amount of email that Rachel will be getting about the epilogue.

As for any drawbacks, this story is definitely not a standalone; one cannot just jump into it. It needs to be read after Nice Dragons Finish Last, so that’s the only point I can think which detracts from this sumptuous thriller. On all other fronts, it aces its characterization, plot twists, plot pace, etc.

CONCLUSION: One Good Dragon Deserves Another is a first rate sequel that completely outshines its predecessor in every department. It reads like a thriller, is a urban fantasy, Sci-fi mashup in its plot and is a fantastic read overall. When it comes to books from author that we love, I don’t think we can ask more than that. Be sure to read One Good Dragon Deserves Another as it absolutely cements Rachel Aaron's reputation as a gifted storyteller.
Profile Image for Danya.
484 reviews22 followers
August 2, 2015
Rachel Aaron’s ONE GOOD DRAGON DESERVES ANOTHER is witty, fresh, and fun. A sequel that expands on world building, characters, and the series plot makes this one a winner.

Our story opens two months after the events of the first book and Julius Heartstriker and his human mage friend Marci are hiding out in the DFZ. Who are they hiding from? Depends who you ask, but anyone bearing the name of Julius’ dragon clan –Heartstriker – is someone to avoid so far as he’s concerned. But family is tough to dodge even at the best of times, so when you’ve got scores of draconic brothers and sisters there’s no hiding out for long. Sooner than Julius would like his family are back in the picture, dragging the “Nice Dragon” into dragon clan politics – and maybe even war.

If there’s one thing clan Heartstriker is good at it’s getting into trouble and stepping on toes…and chopping off heads. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise when Estella, dragon Seer and the de facto head of the Three Sisters clan, starts targeting the Heartstrikers directly. While our protagonists Julius and Marci are worried, the matriarch of the clan Bethesda doesn’t bat a single heavily mascaraed eyelash. After all, what does a powerful clan of almost a hundred dragons have to fear from Estella? But all bets are off when a Seer gets involved…

Fan favourites Bob and Chelsie are back and better than ever in ONE GOOD DRAGON DESERVES ANOTHER, taking a more active role in Julius’ life. I adored both characters in the first book, but getting a peek at their individual motivations and agendas was fascinating! I love the fact that Heartstriker’s enforcer is a woman, since that role is typically reserved for male characters; Chelsie can definitely kick some serious dragon ass, which we get to see in multiple wonderfully written battle scenes. You go girl!

The other badass lady in ONE GOOD DRAGON DESERVES ANOTHER is of course Marci, the most lovable character ever. It’s not easy being a human in a dragon’s world, especially one with a sassy attitude. Her magical brilliance, cunning, and audacity are actually all draconic characteristics, now that I think about it. She’d make a great dragon. But aside from helping out her BFF/potential BF Julius, Marci has her own problems to deal with. For one thing, her spirit cat Ghost has been acting very strange indeed…and may not actually be a spirit cat after all. I’ll not spoil the surprise but holy crap were Marci and Ghost’s scenes together awesome!

Marci’s magical abilities and her relationship with the spirit cat led to my favourite relationship in this book: the tentative alliance between Marci and Amelia Hearstriker. That’s right, we finally get to meet a member of the illustrious ‘A’ clutch, Bethesda’s first group of children. And Amelia does not disappoint! The hard-drinking, magic-wielding dragoness is a perfect counterpoint to her more controlled siblings. And I loved seeing her geek out about magic with Marci!

As if the fabulous characters weren’t enough, the plot of ONE GOOD DRAGON DESERVES ANOTHER was also compelling and unpredictable. The major plot arc wraps up with enough detail to satisfy, and then some major game changers are introduced in the epilogue. No cliffhanger, just intriguing stuff! I have burning questions that need to be answered in the third book. These questions include:

1)How will clan Heartstriker respond to a certain spirit throwing down the gauntlet?
2) Will Julius ever get up the nerve to ask Marci on a date? Preferably one that doesn’t involve tank badgers?
3) And finally, what the heck happened with Chelsie in China?!

Suffice it to say that after ONE GOOD DRAGON DESERVES ANOTHER, I’m eagerly anticipating the third book. There’s something for everyone in this wholly unique series: humour, heart, and seriously great characters. If you’re not already reading the Heartstrikers series, do yourself a favour and pick it up!

Profile Image for Lindsay.
1,248 reviews218 followers
August 1, 2019
One of those rare series that gets significantly better with the second book.

Julius and Marci now have their own business in the DFZ as magical creature pest control. But Justin's exposure as a dragon in the DFZ has had consequences and the dragon hunters are out in force. At the same time Estella has returned from her trip to the planes and she's brought with her the means to take down the Heartstriker clan completely.

The first book set the stage and introduced us to a lot of characters and the world. This book gets to play with those pieces while going much higher and deeper into the world-building, including where the Dragons are from, and much more about spirits. Plus we get introduced to the delightful Amelia Heartstriker.

And I really can't complain about the pace. I was expecting the events of the end of this book to be the climax of the whole series, but instead it's just some great setup for the next few books which should go in interesting places. Lots of fun.
Profile Image for Laura (Kyahgirl).
2,051 reviews144 followers
November 16, 2015
4/5; stars; A-

I really enjoyed this second addition to the Heartstriker series. There are many characters with great potential and I look forward to more books with this particular cast.
The only flaws were an excessive amount of navel gazing and internal dialog at some points. Besides that, there was an inventive magic system, good pacing, and lots of humorous moments.
I both listened to and read the book. As with the first in this series, I really enjoyed the abilities of the narrator, Vikas Adam.
Profile Image for Emma.
2,394 reviews824 followers
October 28, 2019
I read the first book in this series some time ago and *quite* liked it. It was ok. I only picked this up because I’d just read another series set in the same world by this author and really enjoyed it, so thought I’d give Heartstrikers another chance. This book was a completely different beast. The politics, manoeuvring, the development in relationships, the action, the whole shebang was seriously ramped up. Excellent stuff!
Profile Image for Eric.
179 reviews50 followers
May 6, 2019
3.5 Stars

One Good Dragon Deserves Another is a solid second entry in the Heartstrikers series, expanding the world and adding in some interesting new characters.

After surviving his mother’s test, Julius is trying to stay out of the way of the more powerful dragons in his clan and carve out a quiet life for himself. To the surprise of no one, things don’t turn out quite as he had planned and Julius and Marci are soon pulled into a mess that puts in the crosshairs of his own clan, another powerful dragon clan, and a feared dragon hunter.

Honestly, I feel like you could copy and paste my review from the first book for this one. All the good points are still the same. Polished, smooth writing. Fun banter and some interesting characters. Special mention to newcomer Amelia who was a nice change of pace. We got some backstory to Chelsie also that really helped flesh out her character.

Unfortunately, all my negative points were still the same too. It still read as more YA, which for me is a negative, although that won’t be the case for everyone. Even when the stakes were high, I didn’t feel any tension because I never believed that anything bad would be allowed to happen.

One other negative that is new to this book. I mentioned in my review of the first book that I appreciated having a main character in Julius who was genuinely kind. While that sentiment still holds, I started getting frustrated with him as he seemed at times to be more of a doormat than anything else. Nice doesn’t mean not having a backbone. He showed flashes of standing up for himself, but I started losing patience with him.

I feel like this review sounds very negative which isn’t my intent. There are a lot of people that love this series and I can see why. For some reason though it just isn’t clicking with me. Usually if I read past the first book in a series my desire to know how the larger plot ends keeps me reading to the end. I think this time though, I’m out. I think a line from my review of the first book sums it up best for me: This was a lighthearted and fun urban fantasy that I enjoyed without ever becoming fully engrossed.
Profile Image for Melanie.
1,181 reviews135 followers
January 10, 2022
4.5 stars

My review and an extended sample of the audiobook are posted at Hotlistens.com.

One Good Dragon Deserves Another starts about a month after the end of the previous story, Nice Dragons Finish Last. We are still following the main character of Julius, the youngest of the Heartstrikers. He is also known as a failure for being so nice. He doesn’t possess the ruthlessness and selfishness that are synonymous with being a good dragon.

He has survived his mother’s plot to kill him and is now really enjoying the life that he has made for himself in the DFZ, Detroit Free Zone, with his new friend, business partner and mage, Marci. Their animal control business is making enough money to stay afloat, even if they are making large amounts of money.

It seems that the oldest daughter of the three sister, and one of three dragon seers, is up to something. She appears and other dragons’ future are no longer able to be seen by Bob, the Heartstriker seer. The dragons that Estella visits also don’t appear to act right.

There is also the appearance of Amelia, A-melia Heartstriker. She is the heir to the Heartstriker throne. Which means she is a threat to her mother. Amelia is a planeswalker. She has spent the last fifty years on another plane of existence, so Julius and Justin are meeting her for the first time.

There is also Ghost, who we learn a lot more about. Ghost is a spirit cat that Merci bound to herself in the first book. He is a large player in this story and I think has an even larger part to play in the future.

We also see a lot of Bob and his pigeon. I just love Bob and his pigeon. Not only does he have the quirks that many would expect of a seer, he is just quirky in and of itself. Plus, he is never seen without his pet pigeon and how can you not love that.

Oh, we also get to finally meet Algonquin and her pet dragon slayer Vann Jeger. Algonquin is the Lady of the Lake, a spirit who runs the DFZ and she hates dragons.

This was a fun story with several laugh out loud parts. There are also some great action scenes, especially the fights with the water spirit of Vann Jeger. The political maneuvering of the seers, Bethesda the Heartstriker and even how Julius out thought them all was well written. There is suspense in that you know who the bad guy is, but you have no idea how the good guys will prevail. Lastly, there is the start of a romance between Julius and Marci. This is a fun urban fantasy series that has it all. I do recommend that you start with Nice Dragons Finish Last. As with most UF series, you can’t pick up this series in the middle without being lost.

Vikas Adam did a wonderful job with the narration once again. He is great with both male and female voices. He has the spirits that he has to voice in this story. The spirits came in both male and female too. You can really feel the difference in the spirits and the dragons and humans. I really loved how he voiced the fun-loving aspects of A-melia and Bob. I would highly recommend this series on audio. I will also be looking for other books narrated by Vikas Adam.
Profile Image for Blodeuedd Finland.
3,387 reviews293 followers
December 11, 2021
First read:

Omg, I looove this series. The second half was so omg, and the last 8 hours in listened to in a day cos I COULD NOT STOP. I know I do not give 5s but what the hell, maybe I should start! That does it, 5 it is, I freaking adored this book!

Oh and I adore Vikas Adam too! In the end I have no idea whether he is male or female cos these voices are the voices of the people in the book. He is freaking fantastic.

LIke omg, so good!

Can't I just write hearts and let that be it? Nope? Fine.

Ok, so, omg so good!

fine, fine! I will try.

Julius (omg, I love him! I want to meet him and just adore him forever. He is so not alpha. He is just a really nice guy *coughs* dragon*). Where was I? Right Julius. His family is trouble as always. There is a dragon hunter after him. But at least he has Marci and her pet spirit Ghost (omg Ghost, did not see that coming!). And Marci is always cool.

Bob!!!!! I love Bob!

Justin, you fool, adorable. And Amealia was a hoot! Chealsea is always cool. Damn that Estella! Bethesda is such a first class dragon bitch, mommy of the year for sure. Katia sure upped her game. Bob's pigeon is awesome. Grrrr Algoquin!

Omg the dragon lore was amazeballs.

OMG those last hours, eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeek!

Book 2 was sure better than the first (which was amazing too), I do fear book 3 now since this one was so good. But hey even though it just ends up being amazing and not amazeballs I will be fine.
You all must start this series.

Vikas Adam is the best! Looooove him and his narration.
This series is a MUST listen. DO not read it. LISTEN to it. I might just be a tad in love with him.

Edit. I should not have looked at what else he has narrated cos omg, that guy is HAWT

STill loving it! It took me longer this time cos I had review books but I could always jump right in and just be there cos omg love this series.

Love Julius.
Love Ghost
Hey, love Bob.
Yay Chelsea
Omg they all rock.

This is a must LISTEN series

re-listen Dec 2021

I still love this series.
Julius is the best!

If you have not read it then you have to do so now.

OH and LISTEN. Audio is key
Profile Image for Daniel.
750 reviews72 followers
September 2, 2015
Fast paced, intense action, fun and quirky characters. Nice continuation and fully recommended for fans of the last book.
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