Four Stars: 


“Even then, I couldn’t understand why everyone didn’t hate the dragon like I did. Now at least, I was old enough to understand that not everyone had seen the things I had seen. Not everyone had lost what I had lost.”


Beryl carries within him a deep hatred of the green dragon Viridia that has ruled his city with cruelty for a thousand years. His parents had given him the name of a gem that is often green to honor the dragon they worship. Instead of honoring the dragon, Beryl wants to kill the monster.


Beryl runs across a man named Onyx, a refugee from the black city, and rescues him from the police and a draconic, a creature somewhat between a human and dragon in appearance as well as possibly a demon. When Beryl needs to carry Onyx, a cybernetic implant helps him withstand leaps from balconies and fast runs through the green city.


Beryl and Onyx join to form a conspiracy against Viridia despite Beryl being only an orphaned bicycle repairman. Yes, he has an illegal cybernetic implant that strengthened his legs, but that was done while he was unconscious. All high tech is reserved for the dragons and their servants so Beryl must keep his implant hidden from everyone. The surgeon who saved his life says that he can do more than he knows. With no idea what the surgeon means, Beryl trudges through his dreary life in a dreary town ruled by fear of the dragon, draconics, and police. Until the day he rescues Onyx from the police. Now, as he runs from hiding place to hiding place, he wonders what a lowly worker could possibly do to take down the dragon.


Now, as he runs from hiding place to hiding place, he wonders what he could possibly do to take down the dragon.


Once, a city-ruling dragon had been killed by its rebellious subjects. The entire city as well as its inhabitants were burned to ash by the other dragons. These dragons are not the cute dragons that people often ride in fantasy novels. These ancient dragons are building-sized, stinking, and full of spite. If Beryl fails, burning will be the fate of his city and everybody he knows.


This first book, in what is sure to be an exciting series, deals with the people who gather around Beryl, planning, logistics, and breathtaking adventures with the probability of death around every corner. The stage has been well set for the rest of the series.


One thing I find distracting is the passages where Beryl seems to think more like a twelve-year-old than an eighteen-year-old. There were many more things I thought were done well. The action and worldbuilding are excellent. The pacing is good for discoveries about Beryl and his world. Mysteries about the valley of the six cities and what lies beyond the circle of mountains are hinted at and surely will be revealed in following books.


Recommended for age twelve and up who like a lot of action.



Heat: Almost none. One scene with mention of a virgin. The hero kisses a girl.

Profanity: Only made up words or words that relate to that society.

Violence: There is a great deal of violence and blood.


Viridia can be purchased on Amazon.


Lelia Rose Foreman has raised and released five children. Everyone survived. She also homeschooled fourteen years with similar results. You can find her Christian science-fiction, A Shattered World in English or Spanish. She writes science fantasy adventure, Tales from Talifar with her oldest son, a video game artist, under the name Rose Foreman. You can contact Josh Foreman at









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