Sunday, 18 March 2012

Book Review: Temeraire by Naomi Novik

I came across this book recently while I was browsing the Pendraken forums (which incidently is a great community worth visiting even if you're not into 10mm). It sounded interesting so I bought a copy from Amazon. It arrived a couple of days ago & I enjoyed it so much that I read it through in one sitting. So I thought I'd let you know about it..
It is set in Napoleonic times and is the story of Will Laurence, a Captain in the Royal Navy. The story starts with a battle at sea in which a French frigate is captured and found to be carrying an unusual cargo, a dragon egg. Yes, in this world dragons exist and have done for hundreds if not thousands of years. They are used by all the major powers, although they are not common, and the capture of the egg is a major coup for Britain & Captain Laurence. However the egg hatches while they are at sea and the young dragon bonds with Will meaning he must give up his position as a ship's captain and join the Dragon Corps devoting his life to flying & caring for the dragon.
I won't go into details of the story so as not to spoil it for you but it covers the training of both Will & the dragon, their growing relationship and finally their combat experiences culminating in the usual climactic battle. The main characters are well written & likable, the plot has twists and turns and the use of dragons in combat is interesting & presented in a way I've never seen before. All in all I have no problem in recommending it to you. It is also the first book in a series, which I will also be buying. In case you're interested I've listed the other books in the series below.

Temeraire: The Throne of Jade
Black Powder War
Empire of Ivory
Victory of Eagles
Tongues of Serpents

Rating: 4 Stars
A good but not great book which is an easy and enjoyable read. The innovative use of dragons in combat & some of the plot twists set it apart from the crowd.

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