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Dragon's Keep

(Wilde Island Chronicles #1)

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3.64  ·  Rating details ·  7,329 ratings  ·  649 reviews
Far away on Wilde Island, Princess Rosalind is born with a dragon claw where her ring finger should be. To hide the secret, the Queen forces her to wear gloves at all times until a cure can be found, so Rosalind can fulfill the prophecy to restore the family to their rightful throne.
    
But Rosalind’s flaw cannot be separated from her fate. When she is carried off by the
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Hardcover, 320 pages
Published April 1st 2007 by HMH Books for Young Readers
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Imarru
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Imarru 6th grade and up
no sex, and I cannot recall there being any bad language.
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3.64  · 
Rating details
 ·  7,329 ratings  ·  649 reviews


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Gemma
Dec 21, 2009 rated it it was ok
"Read" it says. Endured is more like it.

Often times, first impressions are wrong. My first impression of Dragon's Keep was that it was boring. But after I read it, I learned I was wrong; it was boring AND disgusting.

Boring, because the author had all these details in there that you think might be important, but aren't in the end. They're either vaguely followed up so you're not really sure, or just dismissed all together, and never mentioned again. Like that little girl that died in the beginnin
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Jennifer Wardrip
Reviewed by Carrie Spellman for TeensReadToo.com

Rosalind's fate was written in the stars, read by Merlin, some 600 years before she was born. A direct descendant of the Pendragon line, her ancestor, Evaine, was the younger sister of King Arthur. Evaine married an outlaw and was banished to Wilde Island and erased from family history, setting Rosalind's destiny in motion. Three things are said of the twenty-first queen of Wilde Island; "She shall redeem the name Pendragon. End war with the wave o
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Tammie
I did not enjoy Dragon's Keep as much as Dragonswood. The main reason being is that the romance lacks development. One minute they meet and the next she is in love with him. It's the insta-love thing. This resulted in me never finding the romance convincing.

The book is really split into three different parts. The first two we spend a good amount of time on, but the last part is sadly mostly glossed over. This is where the development of the romance could have come in, but unfortunately we are m
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Miss Clark
2.5 stars

Well, I liked the dragon aspects of the book, esp. as they were not the fun, endearing, yet noble and powerful creatures of most of the series that I like. These dragons are far more the wild monsters that appear in legends and the scary, if still majestic animals that everyone is out to kill. And they are not all wrong in that inclination to eliminate such a threat. Which made our heroine's time spent with these creatures and the relationship that she builds with them all the more vita
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Karissa
Sep 26, 2015 rated it liked it
Prior to reading this book I read, and really enjoyed, Dragonswood. Dragonswood made me want to go back and pick up the first book in the Wilde Island series. The two books are only loosely related (this one takes place quite a while before the story in Dragonswood and focuses on different characters). This was a beautifully written story that moves very slowly.

Princess Rosalind (Rosie to her friends) is born with one finger that is a dragon claw. Her mother goes to great lengths to hide Rosie’s
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Elise P
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Michelle (Crazy Cat Lady)
It's back to the library for this book, even though I haven't finished it yet. My interest has waned a bit since I started it, but I'll try to borrow it again when/if I feel I'm in the right mood for it. It's not bad, it's just the wrong time; I actually prefer buying books to borrowing because I have a strong tendency to put books I like down for a few months, or years, before resuming where I left off.

Anyway, a few thoughts so far concerning the book.

I hated the queen! She's more obsessed wit
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Grace
Aug 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
I'm not one for high fantasy and epic tales anymore, but I found myself reading this book in a day. It's easy reading and I found the author's tale absorbing, despite the fact that I feel that the blurb is slightly misleading. The blurb states that Rosie is captured by the dragon, yadda yadda, but this event happens more than halfway into the book.

I would characterize this story as more of a coming of age story of a pampered, lonely princess fueled by her mother's ambition. It's completely told
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Celia
Dec 27, 2007 rated it liked it
Shelves: youngadult, fantasy
This was a lovely YA fairytale - the version I read in Australia was actually called Talon. Princess Rosalind, of Wilde Island, was the subject of a prophecy many generations before her birth. She would restore the glory of Wilde Island, and end a war. However, the Princess was born with a dragon's claw instead of a ring finger on one of her hands, and wears gloves at all times to hide this terrible flaw. However, when a dragon carries her off, the claw is the least of her worries.

Dragon's Keep
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Small Review
Feb 19, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: g-fantasy, 2010-read
3.5 stars

This is one of those books where the payoff is good, but the journey is only so-so. I’m glad I read this book—I like the story very much and the author did a great job in capturing the feel of an Arthurian tragedy—but…the actual reading process was a little difficult for me.

I like fast-paced books, and this was not a fast-paced book at all. There is very little edge-of-your-seat action, with the plot instead unfurling slowly across Rosalind's life. For people who don’t mind a slower-pac
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☣ EMᕈRESS SERΔ ☣
Jul 27, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: dragons
|SPOILERS POSSIBLE! I DO NOT HAVE A FILTER IN THIS REGARD|

This book was such a disappointment. I had actually been really looking forward to reading this after I found out that Dragonswood was part of a series. Finally I got my hands on it and once I had gotten about three chapters in, I wondered if I would actually be able to finish it. Hooray for perseverance though, I did it. Now lets get to my observations.

Hey Rosalind? Where is your personality? I didn't see any of it, honestly. All you di
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Kristen
Jun 29, 2011 rated it it was ok
I had originally picked it up "Dragon's Keep" because it has to do with dragons … and I LOVE dragons.

It’s set in the old days, with kings and castles and whatnot. The time period isn’t really my bag to begin with, but I thought I would give it a chance anyway.

I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised. Carey weaves a really interesting story. It seemed like a fairy tale. This book tells the tale of the princess Rosalind that was born with a dragon claw instead of her left ring finger. This is
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Adriana
Dec 23, 2008 rated it really liked it
I will be the first to say that I am not into the fantasy books, but this one was very enjoyable. I might even say that I will probably read a lot more fantasy because of it. Rosalind is a Pendragon Queen but there is only one problem: she has a dragon's claw where her left ring finger should be. No one but her mother the Queen knows, and incidentally anyone who sees it meets an untimely death. Rosalind is both ashamed and fascinated by her "deformity". It will impede her becoming a queen in the ...more
Hayley
Jul 25, 2011 rated it it was ok
I picked this up because the premise seemed cool -- a princess "cursed" with a dragon part -- and just as I suspected, the talon was a sort of metaphor for her sexuality and feminine mystery. It was kind of reminiscent of Nathaniel Hawthorne's "The Birthmark" in some respects.

But there I'd have to say that the coolness ends. The villain, "Sir Magnus," is a generically priestly advisor, who smacks of largely of a eunuch. He's fat, and wears gloves like a queen: once again, ambiguous gender is cou
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Katelin Campbell
Mar 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
Originally posted to A Bookworm's Confessions

When I was reading this I kept getting mixed feelings. I honestly didn't know why I kept reading it but I did and in the end I found myself really liking it. It's one of those stories that makes you think even after you've finished, wanting to continue on with the characters even though it seems like everything is resolved in the end.

I think why it has so many bad reviews is the writing. It's not well written sometimes. However, I really enjoyed the
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Sarah
Apr 19, 2010 rated it it was ok
So cheesy! I read this because it was unanimously chosen by the teens in my book group. It is about dragons and far far away places where they say things like “whilst” and “abide my time drinking mead”. The princess is cursed with a dragon claw b/c her mom is possibly crazy and a heroin addict (poppy potion!) and she has to reunite the kingdom. The main character is the dimmest girl on the planet and while sort of perky, pales in comparison to say, Coraline. I will be interested in what the grou ...more
Wealhtheow
Jan 05, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Before her birth, a princess is prophesied to lead her nation to glory and peace. After she is born with a hideous claw in place of her ring finger, her mother refuses to let go of her daughter's supposed fate. She dedicates her life to keeping Rose's secret. Eventually, she cannot protect her any more, and Rose goes to live among the dragons, who hate and despise all humans. Rose struggles to survive, but eventually does bring peace to her nation, just as prophesied--albeit through her claw han ...more
Miranda Reads
interesting concept, I felt like this was almost there but needed a bit more...more compassion, adventure...

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Angela
Mar 25, 2013 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
28 January 2016: $2.99 on Kindle

4 January 2015: $1.99 on Kindle
Tandie
Just finished my second read. Still 5 stars. I need to spend some time on a proper review. I love all 3 of JLC's dragon books. Read it!
Sophia Buhrow
Nov 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Personal Response: I thought Dragon’s Keep was rather enjoyable. It's storyline was intriguing and kept me interested the entire time. The characters were likable and relatable, as close as one can relate to people of King Arthur times that is.

Plot: Around six hundred years ago from when the main plot starts, there was a wizard named Merlin who predicted that the 21st princess of Wilde island would restore the Pendragon name to the throne to their rightful place and end an ages long war. Six hu
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Duane Brazil
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Grace
Feb 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: very-much-yes
The summary of this book lets you know two things: that Rosie is born with a dragon claw on her hand, and that eventually she is carried off by a dragon.

Given this, I expected her to be carried off quite soon, but in reality more than half the book passes before she is finally princess-napped. The pace of Dragon's Keep is incremental, passing through two years incident by seemingly-unrelated incident, until everything changes. This book is hardcore, not shying away from murder or torture or the
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Kristen
So, it seems I have a somewhat unpopular opinion when it comes to this book. It didn't take me long to develop a negative opinion of Dragon's Keep. Within the first 50 pages I was thinking about DNFing it. But I stuck with it, and I remained unimpressed.

The premise is that Princess Rosalind is the subject of a prophecy. Six hundred years before, the great Merlin predicted that the twenty-first queen of Wilde Island, a descendant of King Arthur's exiled and forgotten sister, Evaine, would stop th
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Jessica
Jan 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-read
Not my favorite book. I read it for a challenge. I found the dragon claw story to be interesting and confusing at the same time. I liked that the dragon took her away and that he recognized her beauty and accepted her for who she was. I hated all the deaths in this book, but there was a certain beauty to the story. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes dragons and fantasy, and romance.
Deanna
Sep 26, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Honestly? Awful until the last 10ish chapters. But they were good enough to raise my rating up to 3 stars.
Courtney
A very, very long time ago, Merlin made a prophecy about a future princess of Wilde Island. It would take roughly 600 years to come true, but this future heir would put an end to a deadly war and restore honor to the Pendragon name.
Princess Rosalind knows that she is the princess mentioned in the prophecy; her mother has made every decision with this prophecy in mind. All in all, Rosalind is a fairly typical princess - she is fair and pretty, well-educated and well-mannered. All that's left is
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Aelvana
Oct 31, 2014 rated it it was ok
Rosaline was born with a dragon's claw on her left hand in place of her ring finger. All her life she's worn gloves to keep it hidden. Despite Rosaline's deformity, her mother is convinced she's the one who will fulfill Merlin's prophecy of peace and restoration. But not all the healers in the kingdom can help against this ailment, especially when Rosaline can't tell them what it is. Then the dragons come, and Rosaline goes from pampered princess to dragon servant. The dragons see her claw as th ...more
Cory Dorn
Sep 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this book because it starts in a place I have always wanted to visit, which is Europe. In this book it starts on Wilde island, which is in Europe somewhere. The time was 1145 A.D. The story begins 600's year ago when Merlin writes a prophecy of a princess name Rosalind. The story is told in first person point of view by Rosalind. Rosalind has a lot of ups and downs through out this whole book, because of the curse that she tries to hide. Rosalind's curse is she has one dragon claw as a ...more
Lianne
Jun 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
Since it's been a while (published 2007), I decided to reread this before I read Dragonswood. This book was just as wonderful the second time and the cover is still one of the best ever. Far superior to the one on Dragonswood. I don't like the current trend in cover design. They are all starting to look the same.

Although I love the phenomenon of books published by young authors, when I read this book, I am reminded of the fullness and depth of a story told by an accomplished and confident author
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~Things are never what they seem. Find the lost inside the dream ~
Janet Lee Carey is the award-winning author of nine Children's and YA novels. Her YA fantasy is critically acclaimed: "Verdict: This is quite simply fantasy at its best–original, beautiful, amazing, and deeply moving.” School Library Journal starred review. Janet links each new book with a charitable organization empowering readers
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Other books in the series

Wilde Island Chronicles (3 books)
  • Dragonswood (Wilde Island Chronicles, #2)
  • In the Time of Dragon Moon (Wilde Island Chronicles, #3)
“My heart was already cracked, but this one word, gone, was the stone that broke it.” 1 likes
“If a girl were asked which part of a plant she would be, would any choose the root? Blindly clutching the dark earth, never seeing sun nor feeling wind? Toiling there to feed the stem and flower with never a thank-you from them? And who would choose to be the thorn? Thorns protect the plant from pluckers, but who gives honor to them? Nay, any girl would choose to be the bud, opening to the sun, fragrant and beautiful, tickled by bees and butterflies, and looked upon with love.” 1 likes
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