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REVIEW: A Dragon’s Fortune – Sam Burns & W.M. Fawkes

A Dragon’s Fortune - Sam Burns & W.M. Fawkes

Genre: Fantasy

LGBTQ+ Category: MM Gay

Reviewer: Tony

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About The Book

Cillian Roarke is the world’s sweetest dragon. He’s a great boss, a good person, and he spends his days making honey-glazed caramel treats in the shape of bunnies for his bakery, Honey Bunny. Still, the highlight of every day is watching the adorable college student who’s Much Too Young For Him stuff his face full of Cillian’s sweet buns.

Finnick West is a college student who dreams of baked goods, much to the consternation of his figure-skating partner. She’s not offended by the temptation, but by Finnick’s continuing failure to ask out the cute baker. With pressure from all sides, Finn knows it’s time to take something for himself, if only he can catch Hot Baker’s eye.

While the two of them work up the nerve to ask each other out, an assassination attempt reveals forces working to not only stop their interspecies romance in its tracks, but destroy everything and everyone they love.

A Dragon’s Fortune is part of the Magic Emporium Series. Each book stands alone, but each one features an appearance by Marden’s Magic Emporium, a shop that can appear anywhere, but only once and only when someone’s in dire need. This book contains dragons, ice skating, a whole bunch of sugar, and a guaranteed HEA.

The Review

This is one the novellas in this multi-author series The Magic Emporium. There are two main characters, Finn and Cillian, and the point of view alternates between the two throughout the story.

Cillian is a dragon who prefers being in human form. He is a baker who owns the Honey Bunny cafe. Finn is a student and a skater at competition level. He is attracted to Cillian but is nervous about approaching him. There is also a family secret Finn knows nothing off which will have a bearing on his chance of getting close to Cillian.

There is more than a certain tweeness to the story line, but the writing is very good and does not get too bogged down in cuteness. The darkness and the danger are well described and the growing affection between the two main characters is sweet.  I think the issues I have with the story are due to the brevity of the novella format. This could have been so much better with a few more thousand words. 

Then the issues? They are quite minor but did bother me. Finn’s best friend is a strong supportive character but she seems to have the super power of being able to fold her arms when they are already folded. 

Cillian’s constant worry about Finn’s age is not resolved. Throughout the story Finn gets younger and younger in Cillian’s imagination. He is fighting against his worry that Finn is too young for him. Whether Finn tells him how old he is we do not know as it does not happen in the reader’s presence.

When Finn and Cillian finally get together it’s great but for the bit where Cillian freezes in a doorway. They still manage to get down and dirty, but we just get to experience it all from Finn’s side (it unnerves him a bit) and we do not get anything from Cillian’s side other than what happened over the weekend in terms of working and eating. 

Minor things maybe, and they do not distract from the flow. There are plenty of surprises and the overcoming of foes. I enjoyed the book – it’s sensitively written and full of people who can stuff their faces with cream buns to no ill effect. It is fantasy, after all!

The Reviewer

Tony is an Englishman living amongst the Welsh and the Other Folk in the mountains of Wales. He lives with his partner of thirty-six years, four dogs, two ponies, various birds, and his bees. He is a retired lecturer and a writer of no renown but that doesn’t stop him enjoying what he used to think of as ‘sensible’ fantasy and sf. He’s surprised to find that if the story is well written and has likeable characters undergoing the trails of life, i.e. falling in love, falling out of love, having a bit of nooky (but not all the time), fending off foes, aliens and monsters, etc., he’ll be happy as a sandperson who has just offloaded a wagon of sand at the going market price. As long as there’s a story, he’s in. He aims to write fair and honest reviews. If he finds he is not the target reader he’ll move on. 

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