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The second book in the epic Last Dragon Charmer series is perfect for fans of Soman Chainani's School for Good and Evil series and Chris Colfer's Land of Stories series.

When mysterious magic transported Prince Caden from the Greater Realm to seemingly normal Asheville, North Carolina, he was shocked to discover it was home to the most dangerous villains ever banished from his homeland. And that a great and powerful Elderdragon rules them all.

Now Caden suspects that dark forces are conspiring on both sides of the magical divide between his world and this one. The Elderdragon gives Caden a quest: uncover the dangerous plan and protect the Greater Realm from banished villains hungry for revenge. Because if they find a way home before Caden can, everyone he loves may be in danger.

With its perfect blend of wit, action, and heart, Quest Maker will captivate readers young and old, and remind them of what it truly means to be a hero.

338 pages, Hardcover

First published February 2, 2016

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About the author

Laurie McKay

4 books170 followers
Laurie McKay lives in Durham, NC, with her family and two elderly dogs. She earned her bachelor's degree in biology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her master's degree in biological oceanography from North Carolina State University. She's taught at the Chesapeake Bay Governor's School for Marine and Environmental Science and in the North Carolina community college system. When she's not dodging students and prepping lab activities, she's sitting at a local coffee shop and daydreaming about all things fantastical and science fiction.

Her debut novel VILLAIN KEEPER: The Last Dragon Charmer #1 and QUEST MAKER: The Last Dragon Charmer #2 are available now. REALM BREAKER: The Last Dragon Charmer #3 will be available of Mar 7th, 2017. Follow her on Twitter @McKayLL and visit her online at www.lauriemckay.net.

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Displaying 1 - 16 of 16 reviews
Profile Image for Bee.
815 reviews210 followers
March 9, 2016
Quite The Novel Idea ~ Words from the Clouds

Quest Maker is the second book in the Last Dragon Charmer series. I read the first book - Villain Keeper - last week and I enjoyed it very much. It was a lot of fun! So I went into this book, expecting the same thing. And I'm happy to say that's what I got. Quest Maker ended up being a very solid sequel that I very much enjoyed reading.

In Quest Maker, Caden is still trapped in Asheville, home to the most dangerous villains ever banished from his home, the Greater Realms. Now, an unexpected visitor arrives and Caden suspects dark forces are conspiring on both sides of the magical divide. Asheville is in danger and so is Razzon and Caden's family. Caden is given a quest by the Elderdragon that rules the villains in Asheville. He must uncover the dangerous plan and return order to Asheville to protect the Greater Realm from banished villains hungry for revenge.

I really adore this series. It's fairly original, has interesting characters, witty humor and plenty of action. I still love all of these characters and their dynamics. I love how the plot builds in this sequel and not just kind of serves as a placeholder between the first book and the third. It's not boring at all and doesn't suffer from the Second Book Syndrome. Also, I just have to mention that I love the covers of this series and how well they fit together. Middle Grade book covers tend to be so pretty. And who doesn't love that?

If you love Middle Grade Fantasy, you should definitely check out these books. It's fun, charming, interesting and has plenty of humor. Definitely deserves more attention than it gets.
Profile Image for Angel.
69 reviews
January 20, 2021
I loved this book! It was so good! All of the characters are enjoyable, even the villains ;)
Profile Image for Maberan Potato.
233 reviews24 followers
October 24, 2017
Ugh there are so many problems with this I don't know where to begin!

Well first I should probably say why I read middle-grade books... IT'S BECAUSE I DO. I believe that children are smart and deserve stories that older people can enjoy. Sure, don't throw adult themes like renovation talk *shivers* but death and other serious consequences and that the world =/= black and white?? GO FOR IT MAN.

So the thing that annoys me the most is that this fails at its premise. For those who forgot, this is the story of a prince and sorcerer who end up in our world. It's an outsider story basically. AND IT'S AWESOME?? As you probably know, outsider stories are 97% used for kids from our world going into a magical one, (A World Without Heroes, The Iron King, etc) so that the people can explain how everything work without having an "As you know, Bob..." moment. It's basic and fine. But the other way around is so much funnier and kind of refreshing?? Why is no one doing it??

But anyway, this fails at being an outsider story. Why? Well, two reasons:

1. The real-world people are barely in the story. And it should be a crime. Ok, so you're a foster parent. You have this kid who says he's a prince, can't read and barely knows anything about technology, but is super aware of awful medieval punishment. And he talks about a magical realm called Razzon with dragons and magic.

THERE IS SO MUCH DRAMA HERE. I AM DROWNING IN IT. And yet, Rosa (the foster mom) barely appears and she does nothing! Like, she just tells him to stop talking about Razzon and to go to school, where his delusions get worse when he starts saying that the dean is a dragon, his math teacher a villain (that's common knowledge lolz) and his foster sister an half-elf! He should be homeschooled, by a private teacher of course, and kept away from everything that 'triggers' the delusions! They should try and find the cause, do something! But no.

That's awful! It makes Rosa look like she doesn't care about Caden's well-being by keeping him when he'd probably do better with experts (not, like, an institution or something. Like, foster parents with only one kid to deal with, for example. A psychologist who goes to the home like everyday. Exposition to everyday life in the world, going to the mall, supermarket, cinema, etc etc.)

And I want my drama!! It should be heart-breaking when Rosa asks Caden what's wrong and he answers with 'the magical fairies wanted to eat my elfsong' or something! AND IT DOESN'T MATTER IF EVERYTHING IS TRUE. ROSA DOESN'T KNOW, SHE SHOULD ACT ACCORDINGLY.

And like, she never asks why he thinks the way he does?? It's:

Caden: Rath Dunn is a villain and he wants to kill me.
Rosa: *frowning* No he doesn't Caden. Go to school.

That's... that's bad. I don't hate Rosa, but it really makes her look bad. She never tries to ask why, never tries to talk with Rath Dunn to see if they can't figure out why Caden thinks like that, or switch teachers or just HOMESCHOOL HIM. HE'S GOTTEN WORSE. Replace Caden's fantasy with depression and see how that looks.

2. THEY'RE NOT EVEN OUTSIDERS. THE WHOLE TOWN IS FILLED WITH ELVES AND DRAGONS AND VILLAINS AND EVERYONE FUCKING KNOW ABOUT IT AND ROSA IS THE OUTSIDER HERE. THIS! This is why this fails!! Because the dean really is a dragon, the math teacher really is a villain, Jane is an half-elf (whyyyyy). Caden is the one who knows everything, and THAT IS NOT HOW OUTSIDERS STORIES WORK.

I can't believe this!! I wouldn't have minded magic, mind you. But it should be our world that's the focus, or else just switch things around (oh but Maberan, there's a reason why it's happening that way... then add stuff. Add Rosa making sense. Add when they go to the movies and Caden is super-confused (THERE'S THAT SCENE WHY THEY GO TO A RESTAURANT AND IT'S ADORABLE?? MOAR) kids like reading big books, okay. maybe not 500+ pages long, written in 10, but they like to impress adults, okay. give them more.)



Ok I feel better. why misha why... omf

And now the characters! Yay! :D

Everyone's an asshole.

Ok, I'm exaggerating. But like Brynne and Tito?? They are mean and kind of awful to Caden. ESPECIALLY BRYNNE. She can jump off the roof for all I care. And if they end up together I will drop my score of this whole series to one star. THEY ARE TERRIBLE TOGETHER ALRIGHT but ok, let's give examples.

So Caden is a prince. That's how he's been raised, it's not going to change in half a day. He's also stranded on another world, lost his sword, hasn't managed to slay a dragon while his friends did, is cursed to do whatever other people want for three days each month and his brother (who's also there) hates him. And he's on a quest where if he doesn't figure out what's going on with the school, him and his brother will be eaten, and that's without Rath Dunn's plan of doing something to his home (maybe killing his father) and trying to kill him.

What do his friends, the people he saved (Jane), teach fighting to (all), let ride his horse (Brynne) and listens to (Tito) do?

Kick the back of his chair because he wants to be in front in the car, of course!


And that's not talking about how Brynne gives him shitty orders on the three days that he's cursed AND IT'S HER FUCKING FAULT AND SHE NEVER FUCKING APOLOGIZES OR EVEN TRIES TO TAKE IT OFF UGHGHRI, Tito mocks him for talking to his super-smart horse (bitch everyone talks to animals). Only Jane is nice. BUT SHE STIlLS KICKS THE BACK OF HIS CHAIR HFIAR

I can't handle this anymore!! This is awful!! Everyone's getting on Caden's back and he never lets it show and it's awful!!!!! He has to be one of the nicest kids on the goddamned planet (and ok maybe one of the weirdest) and all they do is annoy and mock him for his coat, his horse, his curse and BITCH YOU DON'T SEE HIM TELL YOU YOUR FACE IS A SHIT-HORNET HOLE THAT EVEN YOUR MOM COULDN'T LOOK AT AND THAT'S WHY SHE THREW YOUR FOOD-FOR-NOTHING DESPICABLE ASS AWAY SO YOU WOULDN'T REMIND HER OF THE TERRIBLE, TERRIBLE MISTAKE SHE MADE IN HAVING YOU.




I... honestly can't believe a kid's book made me so mad. I think it's because of Caden. Sure, he can be annoying with his prince talk, but he tries. He never sulks or get mad or says mean things because that'd be lying. They don't deserve him. Except Jane. Jane was alright.

I... jeebus. That took a lot out of me. I shall never touch of these books again. Caden is adorable, but he's becoming too much of a doormat, and the lost potential just makes me write better stories in my head.

Goodbye, Caden. I wish you'd gotten a better story to shine.

Two stars for.... do I even need to say it? Haha.
Profile Image for Miss Clark.
2,531 reviews198 followers
September 23, 2016
3. 5 stars

The flashbacks with Caden and his brothers in the Winterlands are among the most layered and visceral scenes of the book.

"He's like his mother."

Caden froze and Sir Horace jerked beneath him, seeming to read Caden's surprise. No one ever mentioned his mother - not his father or brothers, nor the elite guard, nor the cooks or maids or the butlers - Caden slowed Sir Horace so he could better hear.

Jasan, though, said nothing more. After a moment, Chadwin spoke. "Don't say that in front of Father."

Ward, Desiree and Tanya got a chance to really be included in the action and I hope we get to see more of them in the final book.

I liked Brynne better in this volume. She really needs to break Caden's curse, though. Get on that and stop worrying about your appearance. Tito and Jane remain awesome.

That the adults remaining stolidly blind to the reality of what is occurring is frustrating, especially when they truly do care about the children but can't quite make themselves believe them. They want to send Caden away for counseling because they worry he is adversely affecting the other kids. Why hasn't Rosa noticed that Caden's knife wound isn't healing? Does Rosa ever believe them?

Then there is the arrival of Jasan and the Caden rushing around trying to keep Mrs. Primrose from devouring him, all the while worrying what he may have had to do with Chadwick's death. Jasan is quite cruel to Caden for a variety of reasons, but I just wanted someone to give the kid a hug.

Manglor cleared his throat. His deep voice sounded like velvet. He pointed to Jasan. "His English is limited, but he and I share another language." He pointed to Caden. "He says that one is his little brother."

"What language is that?" she said.

Manglor didn't answer. Likely, he'd also translated wrong.

"Little" wasn't the word Jasan would use. "You mean half brother," Caden corrected.

Manglor* peered down at Caden. "That one" - he pointed again at Jasan - "said little."

When Jasan calls him his little brother! After spending the whole book (and years) calling him half brother or outright denying their kinship. My heart grew two sizes then and there.

I really look forward to reading Realm Breaker!

* "The _____" is what is says there but I can't read my own note so for clarity I just used his proper name.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
1,683 reviews40 followers
July 3, 2017
This is a great book for the middle schooler that enjoys fantasy. It is filled with lots of action, a bit of humor and interesting characters. The fast paced plot is inventive and original and doesn't require that the prior book in the series be read first. A good recommend for the tween that likes to read.
I won a copy of this book in a Goodreads giveaway for this honest review.
Profile Image for Demoness Tenebrae.
262 reviews38 followers
May 24, 2016
*I received a copy of this book from the author through Goodreads giveaways in an exchange for an honest review

I have to say that this book brought back some good memories and a nostalgic feeling of how excited and happy and engrossed into the story I have been while reading fantasy books when I was a kid and even a teenager. It has that innocent tone to it that you lose as you grow older. Absolutely wonderful experience.

I recommend this book to everyone, especially to those that feel young at heart and mind.

Quest Maker is the second book in the epic Last Dragon Charmer series and if you haven't read the first book this book will slowly let you catch up on the storyline not shoving the story down your throat which I truly appreciate in sequels.

Prince Caden is still stranded in the Asheville, North Carolina where mysterious magic has transported him from his home, Greater Realm. He attends school which is run by an Elderdragon and staff which consists of banished villains from his realm. He surrounded himself with 'allies' who help him try to find his way home and protect everyone from the villains in school that 'normal' people know nothing of except that they are teachers, some hated more than others.

In this instalment Caden has to complete a quest given to him by the Elderdragon. If he doesn't, she will eat him and his brother who is the newest addition to the banished people of the Greater Realm who are now stranded in Asheville. Caden needs to uncover a plot lead against the principle Elderdragon and find evidence that would count as evidence by the Ashevillean standard. He also suspects that this plot involves villains in Asheville as well as someone in the Greater Realm, someone he knows.

I honestly enjoyed every chapter of this book. Fantasy set in our world makes it a lot easier to imagine the world author is bringing to us, and I am sure children fancy that as well because it makes it more believable. But I will let them decide on that.

Action, mystery, plots, conspiracies, all wrapped up with a little humour and a lot of charm. I doubt anyone can ask for more when it comes to fantasy and especially so when we talk about books for children.

Some say that Caden can be a pain in the tushy sometimes, especially when he says things like this:

"I'm fine," Brynne said, and smiled. "He's as he always is, difficult and troublesome."
Caden was neither difficult nor troublesome. He was charming and easy. He told the firefighter so but the firefighter looked skeptical.
No matter. Caden didn't have time to convince peasants of his likeable nature.

But it's totally appropriate for his character. He is a Prince in his world after all and he was raised as one. Although he is adjusting to this world, some things are very difficult to completely let go. And that is exactly what so often makes us smile as we see how he thinks and reacts to things we find normal.

Humour is very light and appropriate for children. I liked it and found it a refreshment from everything I have read recently. Definitely a big plus from me.

"He pointed at Brynne. "You've been training him."
"So?" Brynne said. "You've been training him, too. Why can't I?"
"I'm training him to become an Elite Paladin, not a thief."
"Actually I'm going to be an architect," Tito said."

I found no grammar or spelling errors which is very important to me. The cover is beautiful, very eye-catching. Paper, print, letters... all packed in a very beautiful package and it does the story justice in all ways.

Fantasy world I'd love to read a lot lot lot more of. I hope the author continues down this road and makes our lives - magical.
Profile Image for Sandy  Ball.
34 reviews1 follower
April 8, 2017
I LOVE this book! Book one in the Last Dragon Charmer series, Villain Keeper, set the scene and Quest Maker delivers on continuing a riveting plot without bogging us down. Meaning that you can pick up book two and not be confused but you really do want to read book one as well if you have not.

Quest Maker is one of those book where you keep telling yourself, "just one more page, just let me get them to this point"..and before you know it you're at the end. I am going to be so sad to leave these delightfully charming and subtly complex characters after book three.

I am so fortunate to be a first reader for Laurie and will reread Quest Maker when it is in final form. My preorder is already placed. My arc is circling among awaiting readers or I'd reread it.

Congratulations Laurie McKay on a spot on job of entertaining us.
1,118 reviews10 followers
March 3, 2016
I'm enjoying this series very much. The author does a marvelous job of blending the issues from the Greater Realm with the mortal world in a way that makes it almost believable. Caden always tells his foster mother the truth about the evil staff at the school, but of course she never believes him. He finds evidence of spells being cast but then gets grounded for breaking into the school. Despite being a prince and future knight, Caden's character can't read English very well and does poorly in school. This fact is ironic, since he has the power to automatically speak any language, including the ancient language of the Elderdragon. I won't say the plot is full of action, but it has an adventurous and mysterious quality to it. It's been very entertaining. You should read the first book in the series, although you may enjoy this book on its own.
Profile Image for Whimseas.
176 reviews
March 14, 2016
A fun and exciting second installment to this great trilogy The Last Dragon Charmer. Mystery and surprise set the pace with the addition of a new character. The stakes get even higher and the risks greater for Caden and company as he tries to fulfill his quest, saves some lives and stay in school. And all the while looking for a way home. The dry humor still abounds along with fast paced action and of course enough angst to make you say "Oh, dear" right out loud.

Profile Image for Tim Gray.
993 reviews4 followers
January 9, 2017
Got this book as a Goodreads giveaway. This book contains charming innocence, and a sense of evil and danger - it's a deftly done young adult story of an exiled prince, in a school the is both modern, and distinctly not. I note it's book 2, and I haven't read one yet, but it's possible to read and follow it on it's own. The magic is particulalry nicely handled - especially the unexpected magic items - well worth a go.
12 reviews
May 23, 2016
Good continuation of the series. Introduces some new characters while exploring older ones more in depth. I myself found Caden's schitck more tiring in this book than the last. Story is moving along nicely and I'm interested to see the resolution.
4 reviews
January 2, 2016
A great second book in the trilogy. I can't wait to find out how it ends in book three.
Profile Image for Erin.
296 reviews
February 12, 2019
I saw this on a list of book I've read and my mind went, "WHAA? I've read this?" So, it must not have made a strong impression on me. Upon reading someone's review, a few things came back to me (I seemed to have lumped this first and second books together. Maybe I've read the third, too?). I think I liked it well enough, but, again, it obviously didn't wow me enough to stick around in my memory. Now that I know I like the books well enough to read at least two of them, I may reread them.
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