Nahoko Uehashi’s 2006 The Beast Player, published as Kemono no Sōja Ichi: Tōda hen, is the first volume of her Beast Player series. Cathy Hirano provided the 2018 English translation.
Despite entrenched distrust between the Ao-Loh and the Aluhan, two peoples of the same land, Elin’s Ao-Loh mother and her Aluhan father fell in love and married. Elin was the result. Elin could have been a barely tolerated freak, grudgingly accepted by the Aluhan thanks to her mother’s job tending the Toda (the great lizards the Aluhan ride into battle, serving1 Lyoza’s spiritual leader, the Yojeh). Instead, her life takes an altogether different direction.
It begins with mass death among the Toda.