Thursday, June 16, 2011

Review: Flying Blind by Deborah Cooke

Title: Flying Blind
Series: The Dragon Diaries #1
Author: Deborah Cooke | Author Website
Available: Now
Reading Level: YA

Description via Goodreads:

Zoë Sorensson is perfectly normal, except she's been told she's destined for great things. Zoë's the one female dragon shapeshifter of her kind. But Zoë is at the bottom of the class when it comes to being Pyr and her powers are AWOL, so she's sent to a Pyr boot camp. 

Zoë quickly realizes that she has to master her powers yesterday, because the Pyr are in danger and boot camp is a trap. The Mages want to eliminate all shifters and the Pyr are next in line-unless Zoë and her friends can work together and save their own kind.

My thoughts:

Zoë is quickly approaching her 16th birthday and anxiously awaiting the signs that she is growing up. Not only facing the pressures of school where she doesn’t really fit in, but also knowing she is destined to be this one of a kind female dragon shifter known as the Wyvern. Puberty is supposed to trigger more than boobs for the female Pyr. It should also awaken the powers that seem content to stay MIA. 

When an episode of bullying causes Zoë to partially shift in front of a human, her father decides it is time for her to attend boot camp. Zoë is excited to finally learn more about the ways of the dragon, and spend time with long time crush Nick. When an unexpected guest arrives and monopolizes all of Nick’s attention, Zoë finds her jealousy difficult to control. As boot camp progresses, tempers flare, and long time friends find themselves turning on one another. Will Zoë be able to fix things and figure out what powers are at play?

Flying Blind takes place in 2024. It is apparently the spin off of Deborah Cooke’s adult PNR series, which stars the parents of the shapeshifting teens we meet in her Dragon Diaries series debut. I definitely feel this gave her writing a certain vibe that you’d expect from an established author of a series aimed at adults. I really liked that, and felt it made it easier for me to connect to the key players even though I’m quite a few years older than them. 

I actually really enjoyed Zoë’s “voice”. Especially her list making. As a list maker myself I found this little trait very endearing. Zoë also seems to share my attraction to the bad boy type. Once you meet the motorcycle riding bad boy in Flying Blind you will see why. The romance itself was a very small part of the plot. The book definitely focuses more on the mystery, action, and Zoë’s self-discovery. 

I did find the whodunit portion of the book a little predictable, but this didn’t detract from my enjoyment in the least. What grabbed my attention and kept me reading was my desire to watch Zoë master her Wyvern powers. She was so used to being the underdog, and I really wanted to see her come out on top for a change. She is a very realistic heroine, aside from the shapeshifting power that is ;) She walks the line of insecurity without becoming whiny or pathetic. This gave her such a genuine feel. In a world where main characters sometimes are just a little bit too beautiful and life is just a little too easy, Zoë is a nice change of pace. 

Flying Blind is a great start to a new Young Adult series. After reading the first chapter of book #2, Winging It (available December 2011), I’m eager to see what is in store for Zoë next.

My Rating:

Books in this series:

Flying Blind: The Dragon Diaries

Check out Deborah Cooke’s guest post to discover how she feels writing YA and Adult PNR differ by clicking here.

Follow the Flying Blind Blog Tour:

Source: Teen Book Scene


  1. I haven't heard of this one before! When I read Firelight by Sophie Jordan I wondered if there were any other YA dragon books around, and now, I guess I've found one! :)

    Great review!

  2. I love the sound of this book. What's not to love about a motorcycle riding bad boy? :) I love that Zoe makes list, I also do that a lot!

  3. Haven't heard of this one either but it does sound good. I am loving the dragon premise.

  4. Predictability doesn't bother me as long as the other elements work. Sounds like it does and would be a good summer read! Thanks!

  5. Me again, The author Chloe Neill has written an adult series too. The Chicagoland Vampires! ;)

  6. Wyverns, hum, this sounds promising! Thanks for the review, I hadn't heard of it yet. Adding it to the list of books to check out.