Anya and the Dragon (Paperback)
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"An amazing adventure set in medieval Russia, Sofiya Pasternack’s debut novel is so good you’d think she had been writing for centuries. Anya’s father has been sent off to war and all the happiness has been sucked from the house. To add insult to injury, her whole family, including her mother, grandmother and grandfather, are all going to lose the family home. Anya soon finds a way to get the money they need. She will help catch a mean old dragon and get 500 rubles if they succeed. When the dragon saves her life, she is faced with a dilemma: help kill the last dragon in Kievan Rus’ or save her home. An awesome book, I enjoyed Pasternack’s way of making exciting parts a little slow to build suspense. I am sure this will be a classic someday. Best for ages 8-12."
A Sydney Taylor Award Honor Book
Sydney Taylor Honor winner Anya and the Dragon, the first in a duology, is a lush tale of magic and dragons, a gem for any adventure-seeking middle grade reader.
Anya and the Dragon is the story of fantasy and mayhem in tenth century Eastern Europe, where headstrong eleven-year-old Anya is a daughter of the only Jewish family in her village.
When her family’s livelihood is threatened by a bigoted magistrate, Anya is lured in by a friendly family of fools, who promise her money in exchange for helping them capture the last dragon in Kievan Rus. This seems easy enough, until she finds out that the scary old dragon isn’t as old—or as scary—as everyone thought. Now Anya is faced with a choice: save the dragon, or save her family.
And don't miss Anya and the Nightingale, the magical conclusion to the Anya and the Dragon duology for middle grade readers!
About the Author
Sofiya Pasternack is a mental health professional, the highly-distractible author of Jewish fantasy, and prone to oversharing gross medical stories. If you're not careful, she'll holler at you about how to use psychotherapy to improve character development.
"With this clever, fast-paced debut, Pasternack draws upon the myth and folklore of Kievan Rus’ to deliver a delightful tale.…that never loses its sense of fun or wonder.” — Publishers Weekly
"Fresh, funny, sometimes scary, and always magical." — Adam Gidwitz, author of the Newbery Honoree The Inquisitor's Tale
"A delicious read!" — Catherine Murdock, author of the Newbery Honoree The Book of Boy
"Pasternack’s debut is an irresistible blend of moral quandaries, magic, humor, danger, and bravery. Imaginative details bestow a fairy-tale-like quality to the story, which will effortlessly ensnare historical fantasy fans." — Booklist
"[T]ruly likable characters in [an] original setting. This delightful series opener is an exciting blend of Russian and Jewish traditions." — Kirkus Reviews
"A strong heroine and an unusual setting make this worth adding to most crowded fantasy shelves." —School Library Journal "Pasternack eagerly depicts life in an tenth-century Russian village imbued with magic and folklore, riddled with many references to Anya’s family’s religion, their Jewish traditions, and the discrimination they face. The plot keeps readers on their toes with skillful pacing....Jewish readers may find kindred spirits in Anya’s culture, and fans of a Russian setting won’t be disappointed by this immersive novel that ends in justice." — Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books