Review: Acne, Asthma, And Other Signs You Might Be Half Dragon by Rena Rocford

Author: Rena Rocford
Publisher: Curiosity Quills Press
Publication Date: November 23rd , 2015
Source: ebook (given via Netgalley)


Allyson fights acne, not trolls. As an inhaler-carrying member of the asthma society, she just wants to meet the father who turned her mother into a paranoid, move-across-the-nation freak. Now she’s trying to fit in at yet another school, but for the first time in her life, she has a best friend, Beth. When Allyson accidentally spits fire at kidnappers in the mall, she realizes why her father isn’t in the picture: she’s half dragon. Her acne? Emerging scales. Her asthma? The side effects of her dragon’s fire breath. Instead of freaking out, unflappable Beth reveals her own troll heritage and explains how things work with the supernatural creatures hiding within the modern world of smartphones and skyscrapers.
When trolls kidnap a unicorn, Beth gets blamed. Allyson is determined to prove Beth’s innocence and keep her friend off the unicorn chopping block. When they start looking for the kidnappers, they get a call from the last person they expect: Allyson’s father. He tries to warn them off, but he’s been put under a spell by the kidnappers to keep the victims from escaping. Nothing short of death can stop him. Now Allyson must choose between killing the father she’s always dreamed of, or letting her best friend die for a crime she didn’t commit.

*The publisher provided this book in exchange for an honest review through NetGalley.*
Allyson doesn't fit anywhere! Despite the fact that she moves so much that she never has the chance to really adapt and make friends, she also battles acne and asthma, making her the perfect kid to make bully and make jokes about. When she arrives to Albuquerque she finally makes a friend, Beth, who can really relate to, since the popular people from her school also bully her, but Beth is very strong and doesn't give them much credit.
One day, as they stroll through the mall a group of very big kidnappers tries to take them and causes Allyson to spit fire. Beth seems to know a lot about what she is and that confuses her! How can someone know this stuff? After all, dragons don't exist.
When Beth admits that she's a half-troll and that those guys in their school are half-unicorns, Allyson's world is turned upside down. Maybe her father, who she didn't know, was a dragon! What did that mean?
Suddenly other halves start disappearing and when a unicorn boy from their school goes missing the elders point their fingers at Beth. Together they will have to escape the abductors and find the missing halves, or the elders will kill Beth.
Allyson finally starts to compose the puzzle her family is... and she's scared whit what she's finding.
Even though this is certainly not one of the best books ever, the real-life teenage struggles present in this story make it almost believable for those of us, readers, that sometimes like to think that fantasy is real.
The main character, Allyson, is so strong minded and strong that sometimes, during the story, I couldn't believe she was just a teenager, she had to be older than that to have such maturity and thoughtfulness. Beth was also great and she is really knowledgeable which is really cool, in a world where trolls are supposed to be really stupid she is the one who teaches everything to Allyson.
Family dynamics is a really big part of the plot and it contributes with a lot of mysteries that Allyson has to solve and gives a different vibe to the whole story by itself so, when you join magic to the mix it gets even better.
Unfortunately, the book is a little too fastpaced and some of the plot elements seem too surreal to happen in such a short amount of time.
This is a great book for all the fantasy lovers out there who might be able to relate to a bullied teenage girl, but even if you don't you should give it a try, diversity is great a and it goes a long way.


1 comment

  1. This sounds pretty interesting. I have to admit the title is unappealing to me, but the description sounds great and I love your review!