Tess of the Road by Rachel Hartman
***This book was provided by NetGalley and Random House Books in exchange for my honest review***
Let me start off by saying, although I never read the novel "Seraphina" which is a part of the world set in "Tess of the Road" I was still able to follow the story with no problem. So if you're on the fence about reading this because you haven't read "Seraphina" I wouldn't worry too much about it!
"Tess of the Road" is about a girl named Tess (obviously) who has been shamed for her past mistakes and due to this, she is forced to take the high road away from the comfort of her childhood home. She figures being out on the road even with its challenges will be a better life than one forced upon her to live with nuns. What begins as a journey away from a life she's never wanted becomes a tale into which Tess realizes her hopes and dreams as well as forgiveness.
Not long after she's on her trek away from her village she comes across an old friend of hers who is a dragon species called "quigutl." Having him by her side gives her added protection and companionship on what could have been a lonely trip. His tagging along also gives her some sense of a goal to go towards.
I can understand why some people may not appreciate the nature of this story - for it is a long winding road of self-discovery and self-acceptance. It is somewhat slow through the middle of the novel, but readers will soon realize all of the elements and lessons that have gathered up toward a dam which bursts with an amazing conclusion. If you like flawed young women with a backbone and rebellious streak you will absolutely love this tale! I give "Tess of the Road" 4 out of 5 stars!