Description de l’éditeur
Naomi Novik’s beloved Temeraire series, a brilliant combination of fantasy and history that reimagines the Napoleonic wars as fought with the aid of intelligent dragons, is a twenty-first-century classic. From the first volume, His Majesty’s Dragon, readers have been entranced by the globe-spanning adventures of the resolute Capt. William Laurence and his brave but impulsive dragon, Temeraire. Now, in Blood of Tyrants, the penultimate volume of the series, Novik is at the very height of her powers as she brings her story to its widest, most colorful canvas yet.
Shipwrecked and cast ashore in Japan with no memory of Temeraire or his own experiences as an English aviator, Laurence finds himself tangled in deadly political intrigues that threaten not only his own life but England’s already precarious position in the Far East. Age-old enmities and suspicions have turned the entire region into a powder keg ready to erupt at the slightest spark—a spark that Laurence and Temeraire may unwittingly provide, leaving Britain faced with new enemies just when they most desperately need allies instead.
For to the west, another, wider conflagration looms. Napoleon has turned on his former ally, the emperor Alexander of Russia, and is even now leading the largest army the world has ever seen to add that country to his list of conquests. It is there, outside the gates of Moscow, that a reunited Laurence and Temeraire—along with some unexpected allies and old friends—will face their ultimate challenge . . . and learn whether or not there are stronger ties than memory.
BONUS: This edition includes an excerpt from Naomi Novik's Uprooted.
Praise for Blood of Tyrants
“A first-class entry in a remarkable and appealing series.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Novik’s plots and characterizations get more intricate and plausible with each novel. . . . Novik’s re-creation of much of world history based on the existence of intelligent dragons has been so well crafted that all eight books in the series are highly recommended.”—Booklist (starred review)
“Novik combines dragons . . . with period history to achieve a brilliantly realized re-creation of military history laced with the fantastic. . . . Well-crafted.”—Library Journal
“If you’ve never read these novels, now is the time to start.”—io9
“A fun, action-packed read.”—San Antonio Express-News
Novik's eighth and penultimate alternate history novel (after Crucible of Gold) opens with series hero Laurence shipwrecked and taken prisoner in Japan in an extended tribute to Shogun. His reunion with Temeraire, his dragon companion, is awkward, as Laurence has suffered a head injury and entirely forgotten the past several years. As Laurence struggles to regain his health and memories, they journey to Temeraire's native China for some court intrigue, then fly to Russia to confront Napoleon's invading army. While each episode works well on its own, the ties between them are tenuous, leading to a less satisfying whole. Surprisingly, the amnesia plot is the highlight of the book; Laurence reflects movingly on how very strange his life has become, while often-self-absorbed Temeraire is humbled by Laurence's sacrifices on his behalf. Despite the fast pace, Novik does fit in some interesting scenery, with glimpses of a Japan ruled by dragons and Temeraire's discovery that dragons can be as corrupt and oppressive as any man. Fans will mostly find their appetites whetted for the series conclusion.
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Novik was nearly at the end of the series when she wrote this, and her weariness with Laurence and Temeraire is showing. Despite an exciting plot and excellent characterization, the story itself suffers from fatigue. It would have been better to eliminate some elements, or to have stretched the entire thing out into two or three books.
Having said that, still a fun read and those familiar with Ms. Novik’s previous Temeraire novels will have less difficulty following along.