Serpents of Sky:Nine Stories of Dragons

Written by Heidi C. Vlach

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The author takes her fascination with dragons to new heights in this well-written diverse collection of stories. Most cultures living in our world have imagined dragons in some form, whether they be god-like, monsters, guardians or sinister fantasy apparitions. Vlach portrays dragons in all these modes using well-developed characters in diverse plot lines. The tales are of varying length; some of them are included in other works. This collection is a treat for any lover of dragon stories or fantasy in general. Readers age ten and above will find them enjoyable.

I write about a few of my favorites to provide a flavor of the collection. “With Less Lament” introduces the reader to an elderly lady named Eloise working in her garden mindful that there is a dragon advisory. She nervously glances at the sky while humming a song. Little need to worry, “The dragon was as inevitable as rain, or taxes.” A hummingbird suddenly pauses in front of her, just as the wind picks up and the sky turns ominously black. Eloise shuffles toward the basement as the dragon strikes. Will she survive the attack? In the story “Cardiology,” a young genetic engineer named Theodore has been studying biotechnology in his lab where he has created an army of twelve dragon specimens. They are about to embark on a campaign to infect the human race with a deadly virus. The story, “Another Odyssey” moves in a different direction. At the outset me meet a dragon who is personified living in a human house, feeling hunger, and grocery shopping. Her human neighbors complain because she growls too loudly. This dragon becomes upset with her human lifestyle and sets out on another course. My last example is one of the stories of the Aligare, in which three peoples who are not human live peacefully together with no racial strife or war. They reward the reader by sharing their legends of shared wisdom. As they go through their lives, each of them must face challenges and obstacles. In “Korvi’s Limbs,” the god of fire named Fyrian explains how the korvi evolved from simple lizards to dragons of the sky. Fyrian gave them a set of challenges. As the korvi met each task, they were rewarded with arms, legs and wings.

As you can see the short stories are a mixture of science fiction, legend, fantasy and adventure. Just the book to curl up with for an hour or two on a stormy afternoon!

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