Publisheed by: Macmillan Children's Books.
Format: Hardback (also available in paperback).
Release date: 2007, 2008, 2009.
These books are, for want of a better word, amazing. Atmospheric. Beautifully written. Fast paced. And pumped full of suspense, these books are a dream read!
They follow Ping, a girl who doesn't even know how old she is, and doesn't even know her name until a little way into the first book! Sold to her Master as a slave at a young age, she has never celebrated birthdays. Set in the far western mountains of the Han Empire in Ancient China, she comes to the aid of an ageing dragon who is held captive there. The emperor is fearful of dragons after a disastrous experience earlier in life. Both slave and dragon are neglected by Master Lan, and decide to escape, to find a better life, with the mysterious dragon stone.But when the emperor finds out that one of his dragons is dead, Master Lan tells the him that it was her fault and she finds herself chased by the imperial guards, who believe she is an evil sorceress, a necromancer and a dragon hunter, who are determined to kill the dragon and take the dragon's stone, are chasing her and the dragon. Ping and the dragon, Danzi, must now trek across China in search of a safe haven, Ping discovering that she is the Dragon Keeper, and it is her destiny to protect Danzi.
I think that is where I will leave it actually. The trilogy just gets better and better but if I say any more, it'll spoil the rest of the first book, Dragonkeeper, and it will definitely spoil the second and third book, Garden of the Purple Dragon and Dragon Moon respectively. What I will say is that there are more perilous journey's ahead. In my opinion, Carole Wilkinson, born in the UK before moving to Australia as a child, saved the best till last. Dragon Moon is simply brilliant. All three books are captivating, but the ending of the third book is one of the rare few occasions that I have actually cried reading a book! It's so heart-wrenching. But it works. An addictive series that I cannot recommend enough.
And the cover art! Macmillan outdid themselves with these. In particular the Dragon Moon cover. It's just so beautiful!
I know these books have been out for a few years now, but I was just rumaging through some boxes and came across them and thought about how much I love them. I think a re-read is in order! If you haven't read these, you are seriously missing out. Big time! Thank you to Macmillan for bringing them to the UK! :)