Lyf has always been pampered, ever since she caught vermilion fever and drank dragon's milk to cure it. The milk turned her eyes green—a sure sign that she could speak with dragons. But being able to communicate with dragons is not a coveted gift, not when the Queens' forces are killing the dragons for their hearts and imprisoning all who try to stop them.
Now the last of the dragon eggs are hatching, and the dragons and draclings are in greater danger than ever before. Thier safety lies with a few dragon friends who bear the sign of the dove, like Lyf. But in order to save the dragons, Lyf will have to leave behind her life as a pampered child and accept a treacherous journey—one she may not survive.
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A note from the author
I seem to have issues with courage. I don't have nearly enough of it. One time I confessed this to members of a book group who had invited me to answer questions about Shadow Spinner. One woman said, "What? You have no courage? But your characters are all so brave!"
"Exactly,” I said. "I'm working with the issue. I'm imagining what it would be like. If I imagine courage hard enough and long enough, maybe I'll get some."
It's not that my heroines aren't scared. They are. But they just go ahead and do the scary things anyway. That's my definition of courage.
But there is one notable chicken among my brave heroines. It's Lyf, in Sign of the Dove. She is confronted with something scary she knows she really ought to do … and she actually runs away. (Or tries to! But her mean author doesn't let her.)
I've done a few kind of unusual things, things that were scary to me (but maybe not so scary to anyone else). And there is always this moment, this moment when I am about to do the scary thing but I'm not quite actually doing it yet, this moment when I say to myself, What are you doing? You're insane. Just stop this nonsense right now and go home.
Courage? I'm working on it.
So Lyf starts out about as yellow bellied as anyone you'd ever hope to meet. But she is forced to do scary things, and her courage grows with every obstacle she confronts. The book's editor, Jean Karl, said her favorite thing about Sign of the Dove is that Lyf believably grows so much. That meant a lot to me.
Oh, and I should tell you that there are lots and lots of troublesome, ornery, loveable draclings in this book. And baby-sitting, of course!
Awards and recognition
||Sequoyah (Oklahoma) Award nominee, 1998-99