Next Author: Robert V.S. Redick
Previous Author: Jennifer Rardin

Melanie Rawn

Melanie Rawn(1954- )
Melanie Rawn is the three-time Locus Award–nominated author of the bestselling Dragon Prince trilogy and of the Dragon Star trilogy. She graduated from Scripps College with a BA in history and has worked as a teacher and editor. Rawn lives in Flagstaff, Arizona and also writes historical fiction. Here’s the official Melanie Rawn website.

Dragon Prince

Dragon Prince — (1988-1990) Publisher: When Rohan became the new prince of the Desert, ruler of the kingdom granted his family for as long as the Long Sands spewed fire, he took the crown with two goals in mind. First and foremost, he sought to bring permanent peace to his world of divided princedoms, realms hovering always on the brink of war. And, in a land where dragon-slaying was a proof of manhood, Rohan was the sole champion of the dragons, fighting desperately to preserve the last remaining lords of the sky and with them a secret which might be the salvation of his people…

Melanie Rawn 1. Dragon Prince 2. The Star Scroll 3. Sun-Runner's Fire, Dragon Star: 1. Stronghold 2. The Dragon Token 3. SkybowlDragon Prince, The Star Scroll, Sun-Runner's Fire, Stronghold, THe Dragon Token, Skybowl, Melanie RawnDragon Prince, The Star Scroll, Sun-Runner's Fire, Stronghold, THe Dragon Token, Skybowl, Melanie Rawn

Dragon Prince: Intensely emotional

Readers’ average rating:

Dragon Prince by Melanie Rawn

There’s something to be said for an author who isn’t afraid to take memorable, emotionally compelling characters and really put them through the wringer. It takes strength for an author to attach their readers to a character and then put that character through turmoil. Furthermore, it’s quite a gamble. While many authors will put their characters through physical battles, there’s almost never really any doubt how it will all end. However, when the plot is emotionally charged and the battleground is on a more personal level, some readers are lost along with a lot of the certainty many are used to. Thus, I should congratulate Melanie Rawn for making that gamble with her characters. It was a bold move, and in many ways it paid off.

That being said, Dragon Prince is a more emotional book than anything else. Whil... Read More

The Golden Key

The Golden Key — (1996,2011) Melanie RawnKate Elliott & Jennifer Roberson. A self-contained trilogy written as three parts (by three authors) and published in one volume. World Fantasy Award finalist for Best Novel 1996, Voya’s 1996 Best SF, Fantasy, and Horror Books of the Year, Locus Recommended Reading List 1996. Publisher: The Golden Key is a once-in-a-lifetime collaboration on a level never before attempted in fantasy literature, a work which magnificently melds the talents of three of the finest and most original writers in the field today. Melanie Rawn, Jennifer Roberson, and Kate Elliott have combines their special strengths to create a complex, fully realized civilization in which one very unique family guards a secret which could turn their entire world upside down. In the duchy of Tira Virte fine art is prized above all things, both for its beauty and as a binding legal record of everything from marriages and births to treaties and inheritances. And although the Grand Duke is aware that there is more to the paintings of certain master limners than meets the eye, not even he knows just how extraordinary the art ofthe Grijalva family truly is. For certain males of their bloodline are born with a frightening, magical talent — the ability to manipulate time and reality within their paintings, a Gift which enables them to alter events and influence people in the real world. Always, their power has been used solely to aid Tira Virte and its ruler. Always, until the time of Sario Grijalva. Sario, driven by his own passion and ambition, has learned to use his Gift in a whole new way. Obsessed with both his magic and his beautiful, adored cousin Saavedra, Sario will do anything to win her love. Unable to bear it when Saavedra gives her heart to another, he takes a first, fateful step beyond the boundaries previously placed on the Grijalva spell-casting, capturing his cousin with forbidden arts. And it is this rash, dangerous act which sets in motion the generations-spanning pattern of treachery and betrayal which may cause both the Grijalvas and Tira Virte to pay a terrible price…

The Diviner is Melanie Rawn’s prequel.

The Golden Key Melanie Rawn, Kate Elliott, Jenifer Roberson fantasy book reviewMelanie Rawn The Diviner fantasy book reviews

The Golden Key: Hard to put down

Readers’ average rating:

The Golden Key by Melanie Rawn, Jennifer Roberson, and Kate Elliott

Melanie Rawn, Jennifer Roberson, and Kate Elliott collaborate here to create a novel that is very hard to put down — despite its formidable length and flattish characters. What drew me in was the carefully designed world, the totally believable magic, the overall mood, and the centuries-spanning plot. This novel is set in Tirra Virte, an Italy-ish province where all official ceremonies and transactions are recorded not with words but with paintings. I thought for a moment — "Hey! that can't be reliable! The artist can paint something that didn't really happen!" But then it made me realize just how unreliable words, too, can be. A scribe can write lies as easily as an artist can paint them.

This art-centered world, of course, requires artists. This novel follows the r... Read More

Glass Thorns

Glass Thorns — (2012-2017) Publisher: Cayden Silversun is part Elven, part Fae, part human Wizard — and all rebel. His aristocratic mother would have him follow his father to the Royal Court, to make a high society living off the scraps of kings. But Cade lives and breathes for the theater, and he’s good — very, very good. With his company, he’ll enter the highest reaches of society and power, as an honored artist — or die trying. Cade combines the talents of Merlin, Shakespeare, and John Lennon: a wholly charming character in a remarkably original fantasy world created by a mistress of the art. Although Touchstone can stand alone, it is the first book of a brilliant, utterly engaging new fantasy series from the author of the bestselling Dragon Prince series.

Melanie Rawn Glass Thorns 1. TouchstoneMelanie Rawn Glass Thorns 1. Touchstone 2. Elsewhensfantasy book reviews science fiction book reviews

Touchstone: Not recommended

Readers’ average rating:

Touchstone by Melanie Rawn

Melanie Rawn’s Touchstone is the first book in her planned GLASS THORNS trilogy. Unfortunately, it was a struggle to get through and I finished it with little interest in continuing the story, though it did pick up a bit toward the end.

Touchstone is sort of The Commitments meets Dragon Realm. In Rawn’s world, the major form of entertainment is a sort of theatrical performance which makes use of magic to convey a more full sensory and emotional experience. The performing groups are made up of members, each of which plays a specific role (a glisker, a tregetour, etc.) and if they are good enough they get to Trials (a judged performance at the Court), and then they can go out on Circuit and move up in the world.

Touchstone follows on... Read More

Epic: Legends of Fantasy: Lives up to its title

Readers’ average rating:

Epic: Legends of Fantasy by John Joseph Adams (editor)

Epic: Legends of Fantasy, edited by John Joseph Adams, is an anthology of stories written by some of the biggest names in epic fantasy. The book clocks in at over 600 pages not just because it’s very difficult to tell short epic stories (though some of these authors do manage to pull it off) but because here the authors are not just telling epic legends, they are legends in and of themselves. George R.R. Martin, Patrick Rothfuss, Robin Hobb, Paolo Bacigalupi, Brandon Sanderson, Ursula K. LeGuin, Kate Elliott, Orson Scott Card, Tad Williams, Aliette de Bodard, Michael Moorcock, Melanie Rawn, Mary Robinette Kowal, N.K. Jemisin, Carrie Vaughn, Trudi Canavan,  and Juliet Marillier all contributed stories to this volume.

Epic: Legends of Fantasy opens with a novella by Read More

More by Melanie Rawn

Dragon Star — (1991-1994) This is set in the same world as Dragon Prince and probably won’t make sense if you don’t read Dragon Prince first. Publisher: THE LAND IN FLAMES! With her widely acclaimed, best-selling fantasy trilogy, DRAGON PRINCE, Melanie Rawn opened an enchanted gatedway to a spellbinding universe of Sunrunner’s magic and sorcerous evil, of a ruler fighting to bring peace to a world of warring kingdoms, and of the dragons — deadly dangerous yet holding the secret to wealth beyond imagining. Now, in STRONGHOLD, the first novel of Melanie’s new DRAGON STAR trilogy, there is a devastating new challenge to the power of both the High Prince Rohan, and Andry, Lord of the Sunrunners at Goddess Keep, as a mysterious and seemingly unstoppable invasion force swarms across their lands. For Andry it signals the start of a nightmare made real, the horrifying fulfillment of his long ago visions of his homeland in flames, and he will draw upon even the forbidden sorcerer’s magic in an attempt to destroy this enemy which is bent on the extermination of all Sunrunners. Rohan and his son Pol will also fight the enemy with every weapon at their command — from their valiant warriors, to conjuring with sun, moons, and stars, to the terrifying presence of the dragons, to the unforgiving wrath of the Desert itself. Yet soon they begin to fear for that this invasion may prove not only the end of their dream of an unbreakable peace but the beginning of the end of their entire world…

Dragon Prince, The Star Scroll, Sun-Runner's Fire, Stronghold, THe Dragon Token, Skybowl, Melanie Rawnfantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsDragon Prince, The Star Scroll, Sun-Runner's Fire, Stronghold, THe Dragon Token, Skybowl, Melanie Rawnfantasy book reviews science fiction book reviewsDragon Prince, The Star Scroll, Sun-Runner's Fire, Stronghold, THe Dragon Token, Skybowl, Melanie Rawnfantasy book reviews science fiction book reviews

Exiles trilogy — (1994-1997) Publisher: A thousand years ago, Mageborns fled prejudice and persecution to colonize the planet Lenfell — pristine, untouched, a perfect refuge for those whose powers were perceived as a threat by people not gifted with magic. But the greater the magic, the greater the peril — and Lenfell was soon devastated by a war between rival Mageborn factions that polluted the land, sea, and air with Wild Magic, and unleashed the hideous specters known as the Wraithenbeasts. Generations after that terrible war, with the land recovered from crippling wounds and the people no longer threatened by genetic damage, Mageborns still practice their craft — but under strict constraints. Yet so long as the rivalry between the Mage Guardians and the Lords of Malerris continues, the threat of another war is ever-present. And someone has been planning such a war for many long years, the final strike in a generations-old bid for total power…

Melanie Rawn fantasy book reviews Exiles: 1. The Ruins of Ambrai 2. The Mageborn Traitor 3. The Captal's TowerMelanie Rawn fantasy book reviews Exiles: 1. The Ruins of Ambrai 2. The Mageborn Traitor 3. The Captal's Tower

SpellBinder (Holly McClure) — (2007-2009) Publisher: Holly McClure has it all: beauty, success, a great apartment in Manhattan, good friends, and a very sexy new boyfriend.  And one more thing… a very rare magical talent. Holly is a witch. There is magic in the big city… literally. New York City has a small, and very discrete, population of witches and wizards and Holly is one of them, though she tries to keep magic out of her daily life. But trouble has come to the City, in the form of a black coven run by a murderous psychopath. And he wants Holly, for the power of her blood. The danger to Holly is extreme. Her passionate affair will be derailed by those who want to drain her for their own purposes, and her dearest friends will be put in peril of their lives. In the end it will be magic against magic, and Holly McClure will have to risk all for life and love.

Melanie Rawn Holly McClure: 1. Spellbinder 2. Fire RaiserMelanie Rawn Holly McClure: 1. Spellbinder 2. Fire Raiser

Click here for more stories by Melanie Rawn.