Book review: Zahara’s gift

Back in May, I mentioned planning to tackle three book series in the rest of the year. Here comes the second of them – A.J. Walker’s ‘Bond of a Dragon’ series, starting with Zahara’s gift.

Let me be honest. I was unimpressed by the beginning. By which I mean the first… three pages or so.

Seriously now… the book starts in a calm village that prepares for a major event that might as well be the story’s incarnation of the Olympic games. The MC, Andres, is about to take part but things start to get strange even before he gets to do so.

First, he searches for his uncle during an evening storm only to see him talk with a stranger about something he doesn’t understand.

Then, when he goes to register for the tournament, a thief wants to run with the prize money and he manages to stop him (wouldn’t that suck if they were to compete for notting?) – earning himself an attention of the girl taking care of the applications (and collecting the start fees).

And then everything goes to hell, of course – the village comes under siege just as the last discipline nears the finish line, leaving the competition irrelevant as Andres and two more participant finds themselves in a fight for their lives.

Following the fight, the village is ruined and its people captured, and Andres finds himself on a ship belonging to one of the contestants, pursuing the bad guys. This splits the story between two PoVs: Andres’ group and his cousins’ group.

By that time, the book had long became quite gripping and fast-paced, hurling Andres into a hell of a journey. An interesting twist compared to other ‘dragon books’ is that the first contact is not in the first 5% of the book but around the 50% mark.

The book then sends Andres on a journey for an answer or two before heading towards the major battle to end the book – and set it up for the sequel.


Read date: 12.-13.8.2020
Published: 23.10.2018
Goodreads/Amazon rating: 4,10 / 4,2
My rating: 90%
Length: 265 pages (Kindle edition)
My highlights


One-day reads are pretty much automatic 90%+ from me, and I think this one is well-deserved. As I said, the book is gripping and keeps a high pace, with a sprinkle of humor.

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