Jennifer Scales And The Ancient Furnace Paperback – Aug 2 2005
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About the Author
MaryJanice Davidson is the New York Times bestselling author of the Undead novels featuring Betsy Taylor; Derik's Bane, and the new young adult novels featuring Jennifer Scales, written with her husband, Anthony Alongi, among other titles.
Anthony Alongi is a fantastically good-looking, talented writer who doesn’t deserve his fantastically good-looking wife, the gifted writer MaryJanice Davidson (Undead and Unwed, Undead and Unemployed, Undead and Unappreciated, Undead and Unreturnable, Undead and Unpopular, Undead and Uneasy, The Royal Treatment, Hello, Gorgeous!, “Wicked” Women Whodunnit). He spends far too much time playing games on the computer and doesn’t appreciate his wife, although he makes a mean bacon dinner and stumbled his way through Carleton College and Harvard University. He is a contract writer for Hasbro, Inc. His interests include annoying his wife, chasing his children around the house, and writing his wife’s bio. --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.
Top Customer Reviews
Not exactly. In JENNIFER SCALES AND THE ANCIENT FURNACE (don't let the title keep you away; it's not what it sounds like), Jennifer's parents tell her some...surprising news. She's going to be changing a lot more than most people do at her age. In fact, she's going to be getting scales, horns, and claws--at least some of the time. Jennifer is a weredragon, from her dad's side of the family (her mom never has a tail the way Jennifer and her father do), and her parents waited to tell her until the day of her first morph. Whenever there's a crescent moon, Jennifer, her father, her grandfather, and so many other seemingly normal people turn into dragons.
That gives Jennifer a lot to deal with. She's got her friends (who she can't tell), school, and, well, being a fourteen-year-old girl. She's got to put her life on hold, though, when she goes to her grandfather's farm to become a dragon, and learn the skills she needs for that (at first, even standing up is hard!). Jennifer (and all weredragons) also has some ancient enemies, though: beaststalkers (humans with the power to hunt weredragons) and werearachnids (people who turn into giant spiders every crescent moon). As if starting high school wouldn't be hard enough!
JENNIFER SCALES AND THE ANCIENT FURNACE is a fast-paced story that I read all in one sitting! The writing isn't particularly remarkable, but it's simple enough to keep the reader focused on the story. The characters all seem pretty realistic, if a bit removed from the narrative. The idea is pretty original--a great spin-off of the less original, and more often written about, idea of werewolves.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I like how realistic Jennifer's reaction to being a weredragon is. She has a difficult time adjusting to her new lifestyle and is refreshing to see that she does not accept things from one chapter to the next. Her relationships with her high school friends suffer as a result and her school days could well be over. I liked the scenes centered on her interactions with her grandfather and other teen weredragons. This is an overall nicely done work that has a less abrupt ending than other Davidson efforts. I don't know if this has to do with her collaboration with her husband, but the pace of the story is far better this time around. However, I found myself struggling to finish this book. Perhaps the reason to this is due to the fact that this book is specifically written for very young readers. As an avid Davidson fan, I wanted to give the book a whirl despite knowing that it is written for very young adults. I'll be fair and review it within its genre and say that the novel is wonderful and a great reading investment for young readers. I'll give Jennifer Scales and the Ancient Furnace to my sixteen-year-old niece and hope she will continue to read the future offerings of this series.
They have captured what it is like to be a teenager dealing with parents during a difficult time of your life. The teens act like teens and the parents act like parents. You can see and understand everyone's point of view. Often when writing for teens the parents are made out to be ogre's or so incredibly detached from their kids lives that you can't imagine having parents like that or being a parent like that. These are real people dealing with extraordinary circumstances.
It's witty, creative, well thought out fantasy. I can't wait until the next in the series comes out. YES! It's the 1st of what I hope is a long long series. The world deserves more fantasy written for intelligent teens that treats them like intelligent teens.
If you like the Dragons in Our Midst series by Bryan Davis, you will love this book. Both start out with a similar premise: a teenager discovers that their dad is a dragon, making him (in this case "her") a halfling.
Jennifer, our heroine, begins to notice that something's wrong after she makes a game-saving kick during a school soccer game. At first, she assumes that everyone can jump, flip, and kick the winning score; however, she quickly learns otherwise when she finds out that her friends now think that she's on drugs.
When Jennifer actually turns into a dragon, she has to learn a whole new way of life, beginning with how to walk. Once she learns the basics and goes to dragon school, she becomes much more comfortable in her dragon skin. After she becoming somewhat competent, she participates in a brief successful quest and, with a little help, saves the day.
However, the story wasn't that simple. In order to function in the world, Jennifer had to quickly learn to accept who she is and come to terms with her parents. In REAL life, this doesn't happen until about age 22.
While Jennifer struggles to accept herself and her parents, she also has to deal with others' perceptions of her. By the end of the book, she finds out that, while she is miraculous and beautiful to some people, she is cursed and hideous to those she least expects. Jennifer faces betrayal and prejudice from some of her "friends" while she works to save her family. In the end, she discovers that HER perceptions of other people aren't always correct. After all, she didn't notice that her mom was a superhero, and she never knew that her grandfather was a bigot.