Can you tell us a little about yourself?
My name is Dakota and my life is a little… dysfunctional. I’ve spent the last five years training with my uncles and working as a soldier, or ‘henchman,’ for my grandfather’s hotel empire. My most important mission, the mission I became a henchman for, requires me to impersonate a human at the human-only high school, Mabi Academy. I am a dracon, a human-dragon hybrid, but all my friends are human and they think I am one of them.
What is your role in the story?
This is my story: this is the story of how my life broke apart at its hinges and the lengths I went to trying to piece it back together.
What is your favorite hobby?
I would have to say playing paintball with my grandfather. I inherited two dragon ‘aspects’ from my dragon great-grandfather. The second, smaller aspect I inherited is my sharp-shooter aim. My grandfather is an even better shot than me and he can make dozens of doppleghangers to hunt me down. It’s really hard and I almost always lose, but it’s seriously fun. It’s also a pretty big honor when my grandfather takes time out of his schedule to hang out with me.
What is the challenge you’re trying to overcome during the story?
Instead of paying for our rent and utilities, my mother spent all of the money my grandfather gave her on throwing parties and buying clothes and booze. Basically, I knew the situation my mom put us in was bad, but I didn’t realize how bad it was. Now I have to come up with our rent money before my grandfather finds out that my mother has been stealing from him. On top of that, I was suspended from my job as a soldier for fumbling two missions in a row, so making the money just became that much harder.
If you could make one wish, what would it be?
That I could see Senator Hale pay for what he did to my family.
Author: Rita Stradling
Genre: YA Urban Fantasy
I had never thought my life was ideal, but it had been manageable.
By day I pretended to be a human, going to a ‘human’s only’ high-school, making human friends and trying to get the attention of Keanu Hale, my school’s quarterback. At night, I worked as a henchman, making sure no one got in the way of my grandfather’s hotel-empire which spanned across the Mabiian island chain. I was my grandfather’s most cherished weapon, I stole and manipulated emotions, I would even drain someone of their ability to feel joy if my grandfather ordered me to.
I won’t apologize for what I did, it kept my sisters fed and my grandfather from finding out that my mother squandered our monthly allowance on shopping and throwing extravagant parties. It kept my family alive. But more importantly, my job kept me from being trained to be a wife and married off to some rich and powerful dracon, a human-dragon hybrid, as all girls with one-eighth dragon blood are.
As I said, my life was just manageable, until Wyvern Manderson vacationed to my island. Wyvern Manderson, the rich, powerful, and famous for something or other, half-dragon jerk, just kept showing up, sabotaging my missions and ordering me around. On top of that, for some reason he was always angry at me.
Pretty soon I was suspended from further missions, facing eminent financial ruin and still had to see the jerk everywhere I went. When my friend Amanda from my human-high-school vanished, Amanda turned out to be Wyvern’s human half-sister he was keeping secret and protecting.
Taking on the mission to find Amanda might have been what I needed to save my family from losing everything, but to do it I would have to spend all day everyday with the jerk. To top that all off, Amanda was not the only girl who disappeared, and when girls started being discovered dead I realized that my sanity wasn’t the biggest thing I would be risking in this investigation; I might very well be the next to die.
Rita Stradling lives with her husband and son in Northern California. Her six year old son wants to be a train when he grows up. She has a BA in Art History and a particular interest in modern and medieval art.
Rita has an insatiable novel addiction and mostly reads young adult and adult: paranormal, urban fantasy and high fantasy.