Tuesday, June 2, 2009

For the love of a Dragon

Let me digress from the start and congratulate Sandra Sookoo for being the top seller in May at Desert Breeze Publishing (http://stores.desertbreezepublishing.com/StoreFront.bok) Her book Winner Takes All, is not paranormal, but it is fabulous and we are so proud of you, girl.

Now onto other things.

Let’s talk for a moment about Dragons.

I know, this seems like a strange discussion considering that I write about wolves, wizards, and space creatures, but I will admit that I have a strange fascination with all things Dragon. Which, if I’m honest, is probably why I don’t write about them because I know that’s why I don’t write about Vampires…but more on that another day.

The first time I can remember being aware of the Dragon was when I was a child watching the movie The Never Ending Story.

You all remember this movie, don’t you?

It’s the story of Bastian, who is basically friendless and alone and then finds the key to enter this amazing fantasy world through a book that whisks him away to another land where he gets to save everyone by giving the Childlike Empress a name. (On a side note here, I have never been able to understand him when he shouts out the name, if anyone happens to know what name he actually chose, I would appreciate being informed, thanks.)

Anyway, at the end of this movie, when he can choose anything he wants, he chooses to ride a Dragon. This always seemed so cool to me. What child doesn’t want to ride on a Dragon? (This from a person who white knuckles the arm rest every time I fly in an airplane but we could go on for hours about that.)

So how does it happen? How does a character, admittedly a mythical being often portrayed as the bad guy in literature—let’s face it, they are always burning down a village, kidnapping a princess, guarding the potion that the hero needs to save the princess—go from being a thing of horror or a children’s fantasy to a romantic hero in the lexicon of the paranormal romance genre?*

For me, it was an easy transition. Okay, so in these books some of the time the dragon is green and scaly. Other times, usually, he is able to transform himself into a really hunky guy with a bad temper and our heroine (and yes, I know sometimes this can be reversed, it can be the heroine who is occasionally green and scaly but hey aren’t we all?) has to first learn to accept that it possible for the hero to be both and then learn to love him despite his lizard-like tendencies.

And isn’t that the point of all Paranormal Romance? We take what is inherently scary and we twist it up. What was frightening, is charming. The bad guys are really good at heart and it only took the right woman to know this about them. And I think as a hero, the dragon is actually pretty benign. Wolves have their problems, if they’re of the Were variety, they have to shift every full moon with no memory of what they’ve done...or at least no control over it when it is happening…the shifters have to live with the animal inside of them. Watch out for the Vampire, even though he loves you, ladies, he wants to eat you too and he is very possibly soulless.
But the dragon…I guess you could get swatted by him if he’s not careful.

Am I alone in this? Or does anyone else ADORE a really good dragon-hero in their paranormal romance books? And if you’ve read any really good ones, shoot their titles my way, I’m always looking for a new read.



*For the record, I am talking about making the dragon the hero, not the books where the dragon carries the hero around. In that case, and I still love those books, the dragon is really a smarter version of a horse. I love horsies and I love dragons in those books but that’s not what I’m talking about here.

!!My very darling husband has just e-mailed me, after reading this post, to inform me that had I read the book version of The Never Ending Story, of which I claim to have been ignorant to the existance of, I would know that he shouts out Moon Child as the Childlike Empresses' name. Thank you sweetheart. I love you!!


Sandra Sookoo said...

Excellent post and thanks for the kudos on my book :-) That was unexpected :-)

I love dragons too, but have yet to write one in a hero capacity. There's a nice paranormal Silver Dragon series by Katie MacAlister out there that does that.

The only dragon I've got going on is in reality an attorney and he's...let's just say...on the high side of unethical ;-) LOL

My first experience with dragons was Pete's Dragon from Disney and a young adult series of books which I can't even remember the name of now. LOL

Anonymous said...

Great post, Rebecca.

My heroine in Queen of the Ghost Drakon is half dragon. I've always been fascinated by them or I should say their appearance. When I started to write, I knew I wanted dragons in the story somewhere.

I remember The Never Ending Story. I used to watch it everytime it was on TV. I loved the dragon and often wished I could take a ride on him.

Yasmine Galenorn has a character named Smokey in her Otherworld series.

Liena Ferror

Rebecca Royce said...

No problem and I know about your dragon. LOL

I can't wait til i can buy your book at Eirelander. When does it come out?

I have read all of those series and loved them, I'm a bit of a nut for the paranormal. LOL

Gem said...

In, The Smoke Thief, Shana Abe` created an entire of the dra`kon. They are humans who can shift into nothing more than smoke, or as much as brilliantly colored dragons that fly.

I was totally captivated and added dragons to the shifter stories I love.


Rebecca Royce said...

Hello everyone,
Just wanted to post a comment that I have just ordered The Never Ending Story, The Last Unicorn, and The Priness Bride in their book forms. Soon, I will have read the books.

Serena Shay said...

I love dragons, but you're right in my mind they have to be hero's. They may be snarly,cranky and blow those glowing embers, but that just makes them a sexy dominant male in my book!

Great post! Katie MacAlister's dragons, starting with the Aisling Grey series, are wonderful as is Kiss of Fire by Deborah Cooke

Sandra Sookoo said...

Love the book version of the Princess Bride :-)

Sandy said...

Yay for hubbies, Rebecca. lol

Good post, too.

Chiron said...

Ah, but I loved Stepanie Rowe's sexy and wacky dragon heroine and her unlikely lover--a devoted dragon slayer. *smile*

Though my real fondness for dragons stems from the Pern series. Yes the dragons carry humans but they are smart, sentient creatures as well. Love 'em.

Great post, Rebecca!

Chiron O'Keefe
The Write Soul: www.chironokeefe.blogspot.com

Annie Nicholas said...

Never read the Princess Bride but own the movie. As per your suggestion Sandi, I used it in my WIP and my hero does use "As you wish," to my heroine.

As for dragons, I do love them. The more arrogant the better. Who hasn't read the Dragons of Pern series??? Come on, dragonriders fighting thread to save the world. *swoons*

Also Katerine Kerr has a fabulous series of books on reincarnation. The last six have a female black dragon who is as obnoxious and intelligent as they come. Of course, the hero falls maddly in love with her. I won't tell you the ending though.

Sandra Sookoo said...

Yeah, Annie, I noticed :-) And I was happy :-)

I can pretty much quote huge passages from the book. Have read it nearly every year since 7th grade when it came out.

Love it.

Wish I could write that well.

Chandra Ryan said...

Great Post! I can't remember exactly when I became fascinated with dragons, but they're still my favorite type of shifter. I've actually got a dragon shifter novella submitted somewhere right now. In it my hero has a misunderstood, tormented kind of soul.

J Hali said...

I have a picture of a dragon that one day I hope to be brave enough to have done. OUCH! I love them and one of my favorite books is Sherrilyn Kenyon's Dragonswan. Great post Rebecca.

AuthorIsland.com said...

Hi Rebecca - love the blog and the post thanks for turning me on to it!

I also love dragons, only read one dragon-shifter novella so far, liked it a lot - hope to read many more!

Enjoy your day!

Rae Lori said...

Woo hoo! Congrats Sandi and great post, Rebecca! I'm just getting into dragons myself. I have Deborah Cooke's series and Shana Abe's but I haven' gotten to them myself yet. Looking forward to them though!

Z(Aasiyah/Nolwynn) said...

Hey Rebecca

Thankfully it's letting me post today! Lol, I can't say I'm familiar with dragons. I know they were in cartoons when I was young but never really was struck by any, until I watched Eragon a few years ago. Loved that movie, and now you've made me eager to read about hose dragons who change into hunky men!

Great post, keep it up!



Anonymous said...

I love G. A. Aiken's dragons, just picked up the 2nd in the series and cant find the 1st, but awesome books.