Author: Vivian Vande Velde
Publication: April 1st, 2003
Add: GoodReads | Amazon
Description: Fifteen-year-old Alys is not a witch. But that doesn't matter--the villagers think she is and have staked her out on a hillside as a sacrifice to the local dragon.
It's late, it's cold, and it's raining, and Alys can think of only one thing--revenge. But first she's got to escape, and even if she does, how can one girl possibly take on an entire town alone?
Then the dragon arrives--a dragon that could quite possibly be the perfect ally. . . .
My Review:I've had this book since I was in 4th grade and have read it more times than I can tell you. I've used this baby for book reports, required readings, and just for fun over the years and I still love reading it. Dragon's Bait is a quick, satisfying read and a stand-alone novel. The story is fresh and exciting, and who doesn't love books with dragons?
Dragon's Bait has an original and interesting storyline that remains unique even years after its first publishing. A teenage girl wrongly accused of witchcraft and left to be "dragon's bait". Instead of being eaten, however, the girl makes the dragon her ally to exact revenge on the very people that accused her and left her to die.. I absolutely love it. Who says the good guys can't ever want revenge? The story is filled with adventure as the two unlikely allies work together to get justice, all while keeping on the "down-low" as to not get recognized. With no family or friends, Alys has nothing left to live for but revenge and is fearless in getting it since she has nothing to lose. And it helps that the dragon, Selendrile, can turn into an extremelly good-looking guy at whim.
Yes, the big bad dragon spends the majority of the book in the form of an attractive young man. And yet, while they clearly ended up caring about eachother, there was no romance at all. Not even one little kiss. I remember even my pigtailed, 4th grade self dying for something to happen between Alys and Selendrile. But nothing does. Unlike Velde's Heir Apparent, where the main character is fourteen and the story is in the future, Dragon's Bait takes place around the 17th century and Alys is fifteen. I wanted some romance in Heir Apparent, but I could grudgingly understand why there might not be any, but in Dragon's Bait it seems almost expected that there should be some. The complete lack of romance is the only reason this book didn't get a full 5 hearts from me.
The exciting plot of Dragon's Bait never gets old and, since it's quite a quick read, it makes a great book to read inbetween all the long series that I often get into. Since it's such a short book, there is some lack in character development, though it honestly didn't bother me. Like Velde's other books, there was witty humor and great story telling. I would reccommend Dragon's Bait to anyone looking for a fun book to pass the time that will not disappoint (other than on the romance field, that is).