In elementary school, between '92 and '96, I read a young adult fantasy novel that has eluded my internet searches to this day. I don't remember the plot, but I think it had the word 'Rainbow' in the title. There was a dragon that the main character, and adventuring party, was flying on at the end of the book. The bad guys (?) cast a magical web in front of the dragon at the end of the book, and the characters fell. It just stopped there! It was probably part of a series. I can't remember much else. Any help is appreciated.
This is a long shot - but the 1993 novel 'The Iron Dragon's Daughter' by Michael Swanwick has a chase scene near the end of the book, in which
the protagonist, a girl named Jane, and her dragon Melanchthon are being pursued by other 'dragon pilots' (in this world, dragons are magical/mechanical, somewhat malevolent constructs). They do fall, as do their adversaries, after being slowly destroyed by the environment through which they are travelling (a 'super-reality' in which the goddess of their existence resides).
However, Iron Dragon's Daughter does not end at that point, but continues for two chapters of resolution, so, again, it is a long shot. Also, it was not written for young adults, so if you read it in elementary school there could be quite a few bits that didn't quite sink in.
Incidentally, Swanwick wrote a sequel, The Dragons of Babel, in 2008.
I think this is Laurence Yep's series:
- Dragon of the Lost Sea (1982)
- Dragon Steel (1985)
- Dragon Cauldron (1991)
- Dragon War (1992)
"Rainbow" probably comes from the dragon's name: Shimmer. The adventuring group is her, Thorn (a human boy), Monkey (pulled right out of Journey to the West along with his magic staff), Civet ( a witch), and Indigo (a human girl).
I remember a flaming net being part of the books too. Unfortunately, I can only find the last three right now. I don't think it was from the first one anyway. In the second book, there is a large wire-mesh flaming bird at the beginning and at the end of the underwater segment. In the third one, near the end, the bad guy casts a spell to keep the dragon from flying, and the same bad guy comes back about 60 pages later, at the very end.
Dragon War has a few scenes that are similar, but also has a proper denouement, so I doubt that's the one you read.
Could it be one of the Dragonriders of Pern series by Anne McCaffrey?