Happy book birthday to Burn by Patrick Ness! There’s something truly fascinating about a story that takes dragons, majestic and beloved beasts from the fantasies of your childhood and turns them into the sort of thing that only the poor make use of. Hiring a dragon in Patrick Ness’ new world is something only the destitute do when they have nothing else they can turn to. That alone is enough to make this story one of deep intrigue.

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burnOn a cold Sunday evening in early 1957, Sarah Dewhurst waited with her father in the parking lot of the Chevron gas station for the dragon he’d hired to help on the farm…

Sarah Dewhurst and her father, outcasts in their little town of Frome, Washington, are forced to hire a dragon to work their farm, something only the poorest of the poor ever have to resort to.

The dragon, Kazimir, has more to him than meets the eye, though. Sarah can’t help but be curious about him, an animal who supposedly doesn’t have a soul, but who is seemingly intent on keeping her safe.

Because the dragon knows something she doesn’t. He has arrived at the farm with a prophecy on his mind. A prophecy that involves a deadly assassin, a cult of dragon worshippers, two FBI agents in hot pursuit—and somehow, Sarah Dewhurst herself.

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