A fantastic tale of love, war, friendship and dragons!
If Johnson Farthing thought that life as poor cart pusher in the coastal town of Wead-Wodder was going to be his lot in life, then he was about to get a rude surprise, and not necessarily a good one.
Once it becomes clear that his beautiful younger sister has been kidnapped along with the daughter of the Prelate, his life is completely turned on its head. Farthing has to rush across a vast ocean and a huge continent carried by an incredible Sea Dragon and accompanied by a strange magician if he has even a chance to save his sister Rustina.
And very strangely, neither the rich Prelate nor his chief of police seem keen to even lift a finger.
Dirt, the first book in a huge, continent spanning saga where dragons are an intelligent, cultured people, magicians cannot destroy mountains with a magic wand and the heroes have no wish to become tyrannical kings and queens.v
But through all the dramatic events, the battles of life and death, Dirt is a place of humour, love and ultimately, the quest to find a home.
I received this book for free from Author Gifted in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Dirt by C.C. Hogan from the cover looks to be something for middle school aged readers, and while that age group would be able to read it and get something out of it, maybe even pull meaningful lessons about friendship and unity, as an adult there were things that I was able to learn.
Dirt, the country/continent is a very poor country, well let me back up, it is not necessarily a poor country, just the inhabitants of this particular city are poor, and I am dirt poor. The main character Johnson Farthing, or Mr. Farthing is an older teenage boy who is an orphan with his younger sister, Rustina. His sister who works for the prelate, think prince, of the area, was kidnapped along with the Prelate’s daughter. Although the prelate doesn’t seem to care about his missing daughter, Johnson is frantic in hopes of finding her. Even though he is poor he has friends that are worth more than their weight in gold. He meets a Wizard, who is a drunkard, and then a dragon, like a real, blue and white, Dragon. Oh and this Dragon and the Wizard have a history, and it isn’t pretty.
So with the three of them setting out to follow the ship that took his sister, Johnson learns more about himself, about the wizard, and about the complicated history that is prevalent not only in dirt, but between humans and dragons. The story of the crossing on the back of the Dragon is a tale of mystery, humor, racial tensions, and friendship. Once they reach land, and real land, not the islands that are full of dragons, or the one that is uninhabited they find themselves lying to survive, and then telling the truth to save their friends. Oh by the way, along the journey they begin to pick up what could be considered orphans by choice, or by fate. Regardless, by the time they reach what they perceive as their final destination, they have a ragtag group of five, that without each one, their tale would have been much shorter, and probably a lot more painful.
So like I said at the beginning, this story doesn’t have the violence, sex, or language that you may find in adult fantasy, but the lessons you learn about friendship, perseverance, and what it means to be family. The kind of family that doesn’t require blood, but the desire to put your life on the line for something and someone not yourself. For what looks to be the authors first real series, the world building is wonderful. The author really immerses the reader into dirt and into the lives of Rustina and Farthing. Here is the thing, the author doesn’t just immerse you into the continent but also the social conflicts that arise when you have two different species AND different economic entities.
This story is multi-layered and there are so many layers that it really is an in-depth read. Yes you can read the surface and understand what happens, but when you really dig deep you realize that there are so many more layers, and most of them have social implications. Oh you thought it was going to be an easy read without having to think, well it can be, or it can be a look at our society and honestly what we are doing wrong, and how there are those that bridge the divide between the different races, species, economic status, heck even gender.