The Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of Trondheim by E. K. JohnstonThe Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of Trondheim by E. K. Johnston

The Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of Trondheim

byE. K. Johnston

Hardcover | March 1, 2014

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Listen! For I sing of Owen Thorskard: valiant of heart, hopeless at algebra, last in a long line of legendary dragon slayers. Though he had few years and was not built for football, he stood between the town of Trondheim and creatures that threatened its survival.

There have always been dragons. As far back as history is told, men and women have fought them, loyally defending their villages. Dragon slaying was a proud tradition.

But dragons and humans have one thing in common: an insatiable appetite for fossil fuels. From the moment Henry Ford hired his first dragon slayer, no small town was safe. Dragon slayers flocked to cities, leaving more remote areas unprotected.

Such was Trondheim's fate until Owen Thorskard arrived. At sixteen, with dragons advancing and his grades plummeting, Owen faced impossible odds-armed only with a sword, his legacy, and the classmate who agreed to be his bard.

Listen! I am Siobhan McQuaid. I alone know the story of Owen, the story that changes everything. Listen!

The cool things about Emily Kate Johnston are that she is a forensic archaeologist, she has lived on four continents, she decorates cupcakes in her spare time, she adores the Oxford comma, and she loves to make up stories. The less cool things about Kate are that she's from a small town in southwestern Ontario, she spends a lot of t...
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Title:The Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of TrondheimFormat:HardcoverDimensions:312 pages, 7.75 × 5.5 × 1 inPublished:March 1, 2014Publisher:Lerner Publishing GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1467710660

ISBN - 13:9781467710664

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Instant Favourite In the process of moving, I sat down to read this book to pass time and ended up gobbling it up in one night. I wasn't even mad that I needed to find a new book to bring on the plane, or that I yawned my way through security. I'm forever thankful to this YA novel for its realistic dialogue and portrayal of teenagers, the surprise and nonchalant queer representation. Aside from being unique and refreshing the narrative voice was amazing and powerful, the pacing was tremendous and the relationships between all the characters are wonderful. I don't know why it took so long for someone to combine Canada and Dragon mythology along with environmental awareness, but I'm glad Johnston gave it a go.
Date published: 2017-04-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Canadiana and Dragons! I think I have a new author to add to my favourites list. Very rarely do I read books aloud. If I find enough wonderful lines, I might recommend it to someone when I'm done, but this is usually done quietly (if not silently; thank you, social media). But I couldn't help myself with this book. I didn't even make it past the first page before I was finding lines that my mother HAD to listen to RIGHT THEN. Whether it was a particularly funny line, or an amazing use of a cultural reference, this is a book that I loved reading and loved sharing. (And speaking of cultural references, I wish you could have seen my face when Gordon Lightfoot's "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald" was mentioned. That is probably my favourite part of the whole book, although I may be biased because that is also probably my favourite song.) The Story of Owen has music, Canadiana in spades, a bard, teenage parties gone wrong, dragon slayers, delightful jabs at a (presumably Conservative) government, and, yes, dragons. And it is amazing!
Date published: 2016-11-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Humour, heart and dragons! The Story of Owen by E.K. Johnston has a really interesting dynamic: dragons and dragon slayers in modern-day Ontario (Canada). I don’t think I originally read the summary quite right because I expected medieval times so it was fantastic being introduced to this alternate timeline. Johnston gets bonus points for setting her story in Ontario and somewhat near (give or take) to where I live. I found the main character, Siobhan very likeable and Johnston’s book has that feel-good ending to it. The book for the most part takes place in a small town called Trondheim, and having grown up in a small town, it was really easy to imagine. I’d actually imagine Siobhan and Owen in my old high school, so Johnston’s book had that extra interactive element to it, at least for me. The first couple chapters mentioned Toronto, and how the city fit into the dragon slayer dynamic. I loved hearing about something I’m familiar with combined with dragons. My favourite part was reading about Lottie, Owen’s aunt, going to the top of the CN tower to watch for dragons. I also loved that the author didn’t info dump. Being an alternate timeline, the author mentions historical events and how they’ve been changed by dragons, but only when relevant to the plot. I loved reading Siobhan’s commentary throughout the book. Her humour was one of the things I instantly liked about her, and I could also see her as a normal teenager – well, as normal as can be when there’s dragons involved. I connected with Siobhan a lot and felt we had very similar personalities. Sometimes I did drift off, but I think mainly because the voice is better suited for someone a couple years younger than me. Owen was an intriguing character to get to know. His father and aunt are dragon slaying legacies and he has a lot of expectations from other people – will he become a dragon slayer, will he be good at it, etc. Moving to a small town and meeting Siobhan was exactly the thing he needed. I loved how the two grew together and it’s through each other they find things like friendship and confidence. I actually half-expected romance to happen between the two and was pleasantly surprised when that didn’t happen. I wouldn’t have minded if romance had happened, but it was a surprise. Owen and Siobhan have a really endearing friendship; the two come together to break each other out of their shells and discover new things about themselves and the people around them. This was that feel-good ending – I was completely satisfied with the ending. The Story of Owen is about Siobhan, a music lover, becoming Owen’s bard and telling his story as a dragon slayer – as well as going on dragon slaying adventures and figuring out a few mysteries. This book is the complete version of Owen’s tale and I loved that Siobhan is honest to the reader, letting him/her know how she originally started Owen’s tale and what parts she left out. This book has it all: friendship and bonds to last a lifetime, humour and heart, and most importantly, dragons – if you’re a fantasy lover like me. Johnston is talented and I recommend you pick up this book and others. I’m currently reading A Thousand Nights and am impatiently waiting for her next book Exit, Pursued by a Bear to be released.
Date published: 2016-03-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome This book is awesome I love the writing in this book!!!!!!!!!!!!
Date published: 2014-07-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Review from Esther's Ever After As much as I love YA books, it can be so difficult to find a book that I believe would appeal to a wide variety of readers. The Story of Owen is a book that I'm confident in recommending to all types of readers; it doesn't matter the reader's gender, age, or preferred genre. I firmly believe that this is a story that can work for anyone who appreciates fiction and is looking for a good book. Reasons to Read: 1. Just a taste of fantasy: Dragons play a central role in The Story of Owen, yet this book isn't pure fantasy. There's just enough appeal for readers who like fantasy, yet it's grounded in reality so that those who prefer contemporary stories are sure to enjoy this book as well (regardless of how they feel about dragons). It's this really cool blend of two genres for a book with a very unique feel to it. 2. The most incredible relationships: The Story of Owen is remarkable in how it portrays a number of relationships; from Siobhan's deep friendship with Owen, to her budding rapport with Sadie, to her relationship with her parents, to Owen's relationship with the (numerous) members of his family. They were all different but reflective of real life and deeply touching. I was particularly thrilled by the friendship between Owen and Siobhan, and I loved that this wasn't really a romantic love story - it's a nice change of pace! 3. A story about sacrifice: I think nearly each and every character in this book had to give up something, as evidenced by the masterful storytelling in The Story of Owen. It's heartbreaking to find out what each of these characters has sacrificed, but it's beautiful at the same time. I did find, however, that there was a significant amount of build up to the story and that it seemed to take a while for the plot to really move forward. There's so much background put into the development and world building that it takes a while to really establish that which makes the beginning part of the book slower than the ending. But I have to say that as a Canadian growing up in Southern Ontario, I loved reading a book set in my neck of the woods! It was so cool to be able to picture in my head the exact places and locations where events in the story took place. Siobhan came across as a very realistic, individual type of character. She had her own interests and voice that stood out. And it is such a beautiful story, there are so many readers who will thoroughly enjoy E.K. Johnston's debut novel! E-galley received from the publisher for review; no other compensation was received.
Date published: 2014-05-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Realistic Fantasy This book somehow made me believe it was possible that dragons exist in Ontario! It weaves true events in history with DRAGONS playing a role and somehow makes it all so realistic that you truly wonder if dragons really did play a part in history. The characters are extremely relatable and normal teenagers that are quirky and will have you rooting for them until the very last page. There is an underlying musicality to the book as well as enough dragon slaying to keep you on the edge of your seat. If you liked Seraphina by Rachel Hartman, you'll love this book! And if you're familiar with Ontario you'll definitely love this book because you'll understand all of the references the author makes location-wise. It's an amazing book and I can't say enough about it! Things that make this book different from other teen books: 1) Dragons. So many dragons. 2) No teenage angst, parents take note. 3) No love story, and you won't even miss it! 4) Relatable characters with interesting names. You should read this book! You won't regret it!
Date published: 2014-04-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from characters feel real! This book is one you will start and not stop until finished. It really captures southern Ontario, with the twist of dragons! Better yet is that the concept of dragons is woven seamlessly into the story- even history. The characters feel like people you know, and the twists that take you to the end are great. Book two please!
Date published: 2014-03-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Realistic fiction with a fascinating side of dragons minus the teenage angst. A pleasure to read such a truly creative teen novel bringing us well formed characters in a plot that will have you laughing, crying and turning the pages for the next twist in the lives of Owen and Siobhan. This first time author has weaved a tale with a local Canadian setting, excellent use of vocabulary, and historical references to engage readers of all ages. Along with a wonderful lyrical note using her passion for music as a secondary theme in both content and language. And don’t forget the DRAGONS! The author has managed to find just the right links to connect with her audience, gently introducing an extended family with a gender twist that speaks to today’s youth. I am anxiously awaiting a sequel to take me off the cliff and continue my journey with Owen and Siobhan, and the DRAGONS of today. Note: this would make a great read aloud teachers ( gr. 6 and up).
Date published: 2014-01-19

Editorial Reviews

"Siobhan McQuaid is dragon-slayer-in-training and Owen Thorskard's bard in this Dragon Slayer of Trondheim title. An accomplished musician, she is constantly writing songs about the people and events that make up her world. This is an alternate world where historical events have been overshadowed and impacted by dragons who feed on carbon emissions, and slayers like Owen and his famous relatives. Typical high school activities and issues are deftly woven into a plot that revolves around dragon evasion and slaying. Siobhan narrates the story with great teen wit, and conveys her excitement and fear in an authentic teen voice. The story focuses on her friendship with Owen as they work together. An interesting commentary on the perils of carbon emissions, action, interesting twists on history, and themes of friendship, family, loyalty, and sacrifice will keep readers turning pages." -Library Media Connection