A debut historical fantasy that recasts Jane Austen’s beloved Pride & Prejudice in an imaginative world of wyverns, dragons, and the warriors who fight alongside them against the monsters that threaten the kingdom: gryphons, direwolves, lamias, banshees, and lindworms.
They say a Rider in possession of a good blade must be in want of a monster to slay—and Merybourne Manor has plenty of monsters.
Passionate, headstrong Aliza Bentaine knows this all too well; she’s already lost one sister to the invading gryphons. So when Lord Merybourne hires a band of Riders to hunt down the horde, Aliza is relieved her home will soon be safe again.
Her relief is short-lived. With the arrival of the haughty and handsome dragonrider, Alastair Daired, Aliza expects a battle; what she doesn’t expect is a romantic clash of wills, pitting words and wit against the pride of an ancient house. Nor does she anticipate the mystery that follows them from Merybourne Manor, its roots running deep as the foundations of the kingdom itself, where something old and dreadful slumbers . . . something far more sinister than gryphons.
It’s a war Aliza is ill-prepared to wage, on a battlefield she’s never known before: one spanning kingdoms, class lines, and the curious nature of her own heart.
Elle Katharine White infuses elements of Austen’s beloved novel with her own brand of magic, crafting a modern epic fantasy that conjures a familiar yet wondrously unique new world.
Debut fantasy novelist White pays homage to the prickly lovers from Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice in this lively adventure full of action, wit, and romance. When rapacious griffins threaten Merybourne Manor, the smallest holding in the island kingdom of Arle, Lord Merybourne hires a band of skilled Riders warriors with magical animal mounts to hunt them down. Moira Bentaine, wife of Merybourne's clerk, hopes to gain a Rider husband for one of her four daughters, which will elevate their status. Pragmatic second daughter Aliza finds little to like in Rider Alastair Daired, even though he's very handsome and his dragon is quite friendly. Aliza's sister Angelina, on the other hand, is thoroughly charmed by Cedric Brysney, Daired's friend and fellow Rider. But hunting deadly griffins leaves little time for romance, especially after the arrival of Daired's old enemy, along with a mysterious stranger who delivers a grim warning. Referencing Austen just enough to ground her characters, White fills her unusual fantasy world with plenty of interesting conflicts to fuel this tale of romance and heroism. Austen purists may find things to quibble with, but there's more than enough originality here to please any fantasy reader.
Really enjoyed this book. Was the right mix of romance, Aliza’s wit, magical creatures and world building for a quick read.
Exciting and Reverent
This prose leads the reader down a rabbit hole and into a "tolkien-esque" world of rich and complicated characters whose interplay create a deep and enjoyable storyline.
It so good