Good storytelling with believable characters (including the dragons) set in the Napoleonic wars. She does a fine job of keeping the flavor of historical fiction like C. S. Forester and Cornwal. There are still a couple of problems you need to try to overlook. The author has no sense of scale and no understanding of physics. Dragons change size, people jump from one to another in flight with wing spreads of hundreds of feet. Even with this I enjoyed it.
Its an elegent story that is beautifully written. Langugage flows effortlessly from the author who has created a very civilized character.
The best thing about the book is the relationship between the rider and captain. It is not a relationship between a young person and his/her favorite animal, but instead it is a relationship between a mature accomplished man and an intelligent being who is almost human in his emotions.
Simon Vance does a great job throughout as usual. I come to expect the best from Simon and he delivers every single time.
There were moments when reader might feel that it is the reader who is riding the dragon instead of the character which can be very rewarding.
Normally, I do not read books with talking dragons; therefore, it is my first book with a dragon. I am happy that I took a chance that author and narrator has done a great job, and I look forward to the next book in the series.
This series and Jack Campell's lost fleet series have a lot in common for me. Protagonists that are the model of perfection, couched in dilemma’s that really only need a strong decisive commander to overcome.
But like the lost fleet series, I'm not 'desperate' to find out what happens next. Perfect to read when I’m waiting, and solid entertainment whenever I have the time just not quite....gripping enough to be great.
(I'm 57) I haven't finished the book and probably won't. They are reasonably well written, well-narrated and so forth, but as I was listening to the rather predictable "plot", I realized how much I would have enjoyed this at age 10....seriously, these are excellent children's books.
This book was a nice mix of Master and Commander and the Eragon series. I am not typically a fan of dragon focused fiction with the exception of the Paoloni series (but that is a whole other review). This book was entertaining and easy to listen to all the way through to the end….. However it was not riveting. The book had so much more potential to delve deeper into this world. I wanted more about the characters, the setting, and the dragons. While I try not to let details of the period distract me, I can’t help but notice them. Perhaps I have been spoiled too much from Bernard Cornwell’s books, but I enjoy books of this genre that can not only have a good story line, but also have great details of events, attire and equipment. While the author did a nice job of describing the dragons and their equipment, the same cannot be said about the military equipment, which at times was inaccurate. These are small and did not ruin the overall experience. I am troubled by the fact at the end of this book I was not compelled to get the next book in the series or even put it into my wish list. This is not the feeling I like to have when I start a new series, and therefore I doubt if I will continue to listen to these books. I would recommend this book if you are absolutely bored and want an easy to listen to book without much thinking required. I would rate it PG-13 as far as content and therefore could be a good listen for a family road trip if you are fine with your kids watching a movie of that rating.
I've already listened to this book 5 times. It's a fun listen. I have recommended it to several friends as a great "serious enough to pay attention to, but fun enough to listen to in the car" book. Light on the silly supernatural (no sexy vampires here) and heavy on personal interaction and historical setting, the Temeraire series is a great way to enjoy an alternate universe of the Napoleonic Wars. Novik's books in this series explore many of the continents of the early 19th Century complete with dragons and foreign cultures that are well-researched and described.
Hard to compare... Master and Commander? ... but with dragons.
Vance's narration is wonderful. Covering accents from around the world and a great diversity of characters, he does an excellent job of giving a feel for the language and actions in the books.
This is the first book in a great series!! I highly recommend this book to readers who yearn for historical fiction mixed with fantasy. This is no witches, spells, sexy vampires fighting with musclebound werewolves for silly high school girls who only know the word "Beautiful" to describe things. This is much more a travelogue or war story set in the age of cannons and sails with real historical figures intermixed with aerial corps of dragons.
yes. it was recommended to me by a friend. the story concept didnt seem that interesting, but as I read I found that the true enjoyment comes from the lead character and his dragon and their friendship, not some much the historical-fantasy setting.
While the premise of this series sounds riveting, and I had heard some good things, I actually found myself disappointed, all in all. There are a few neat parts, but somehow it felt fairly uneventful on the whole. And while I thought the narrator did an interesting job with Temeraire's voice, I don't think he lent much to what more active scenes did exist. It was however appropriate to the more Victorian aspects, in that most of the book read like the journal of a good-hearted but somewhat timid gentleman.
Perhaps the series picks up further on, but as for now, this book didn't entertain me enough that I feel motivated to give the others a try any time soon.
Actually, though it pains me to say it, this story might benefit from the editing that a movie translation would give it. At least so far as timing and engagement goes.
I didn't have very high expectations going into this book because I'm not a fan of dragon fantasy. Dragons have been done to death, and I usually avoid them. However, His Majesty's Dragon turned out to be one of the best fantasy books I've ever read/listened to.
Novik blends historical with fantastical seamlessly. It felt like listening to one of the Master and Commander or Richard Sharpe books. Novik got her history right, and so the fantasy feels so... real.
Dragons are the air force of the 19th century. This idea is so well thought out in this book that I am starting to wonder if dragons really did exist... Don't hesitate to listen to this if you're a fantasy fan. And of course, Simon Vance is wonderful as always.
Although I can't say this wasn't an enjoyable read/listen, I was disappointed that Novik didn't do more with a very interesting premise. Put simply, the dragons are just too easy to deal with. They roll out of the egg able to speak with those around them, in the King's English (even if sired in China and given to the French!). For all their bulk and the fear that the non-aviators have of them, the fact is my girlfriend's cats are more dangerous and unpredictable. Some seeds are sown for the idea that huge, sentient beasts maybe shouldn't be treated like cattle, but it doesn't go very far in this book.