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Black Powder War: Temeraire, Book 3 | [Naomi Novik]

Black Powder War: Temeraire, Book 3

After their fateful adventure in China, Captain Will Laurence of His Majesty's Aerial Corps and his extraordinary dragon, Temeraire, are waylaid by a mysterious envoy bearing urgent new orders from Britain. Three valuable dragon eggs have been purchased from the Ottoman Empire, and Laurence and Temeraire must detour to Istanbul to escort the precious cargo back to England. Time is of the essence if the eggs are to be borne home before hatching.
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Publisher's Summary

After their fateful adventure in China, Captain Will Laurence of His Majesty's Aerial Corps and his extraordinary dragon, Temeraire, are waylaid by a mysterious envoy bearing urgent new orders from Britain. Three valuable dragon eggs have been purchased from the Ottoman Empire, and Laurence and Temeraire must detour to Istanbul to escort the precious cargo back to England. Time is of the essence if the eggs are to be borne home before hatching.

Yet disaster threatens the mission at every turn, thanks to the diabolical machinations of the Chinese dragon Lien, who blames Temeraire for her master's death and vows to ally herself with Napoleon and take vengeance. Then, faced with shattering betrayal in an unexpected place, Laurence, Temeraire, and their squad must launch a daring offensive. But what chance do they have against the massed forces of Bonaparte's implacable army?

Dragon tales: don't miss the rest of the Temeraire series.

©2006 Naomi Novik; (P)2007 Books on Tape

What the Critics Say

  • Locus Award, 2007

"Novik's magical 18th century, peopled with sympathetic characters, induces avid reading. Long may she write!" (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (847 )
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4.7 (527 )
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Performance
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  •  
    R. George Kremmling, CO United States 03-13-12
    R. George Kremmling, CO United States 03-13-12 Member Since 2006

    SoliDeoGloria

    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
    ratings
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    Story
    "Enthralling, but unusually paced for a series."

    Novik has created a truly wonderful story. The cast is marvelous, the scenery is rich, and the premise is both captivating and refreshing.

    However, the pacing feels more like a slightly episodic long form fantasy than it does a series. "His Majesty's Dragon", the first book, was a bit more conventional. It had a fairly symmetrical plot arc and a thoroughly rousing conclusion battle.

    However, "Throne of Jade" was rather more ponderous (as it no doubt would have been for Laurence and Temeraire, sailing to the other side of the world and becoming embroiled in lengthy diplomatic tangles). It also didn't have nearly as cinematic an ending, though still a good one.

    "Black Powder War" is similar. They spend a lot of time traveling over vast tracts of fairly barren land, and it doesn't happen very fast. There are several great aerial battles, but what could properly be called the climax is actually not a fight at all. Some might find this disappointing, but I feel that she is taking the time truly do the story the justice it deserves. And that is more exciting than a bit of token action.

    I have recently become more accustomed to books like "Wheel of Time" and "The Way of Kings", than to short form fiction. And when the Temeraire series is viewed as a single story of multiple volumes rather than a set of connected, but independent, stories, the arc and pacing feel more natural. Certainly the two books following "His Majesty's Dragon" are slower. However, they are also deeper. Novik takes the time to really delve into the world she is giving us, as well as into the characters with which she has populated it so wonderfully.

    As always, Simon Vance is brilliant. His narration is at once subtle and captivating.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Margaret Corryton, TN, United States 09-18-09
    Margaret Corryton, TN, United States 09-18-09

    Married, middle-age, owner of 3 dogs, 2 cats, and a messy house.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    101
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    "really enjoyed the book"

    It gets a bit long in the descriptions, but I really enjoyed the story. Makes me want a dragon of my own.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sarah R. 04-13-15
    Sarah R. 04-13-15 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
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    "A wonderful reader for a boring story"
    What disappointed you about Black Powder War?

    It lacked the charm of the first and second book in this series. Entirely lacking in character development, it just a long road trip with boring politics from a fantasy world I don't care about.


    Has Black Powder War turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No.


    Which character – as performed by Simon Vance – was your favorite?

    Temeraire is always lovely, as well as Lawrence.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Bordom


    Any additional comments?

    A lovely reader, but an unsuccessful installment in what was otherwise a good series.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Skipper 09-18-14
    Skipper 09-18-14

    Skipper

    HELPFUL VOTES
    136
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    124
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    Story
    "Silk Road: Macau to Istanbul to Danzig, via Dragon"

    Simon Vance brought Naomi Novik's fantasy to life. I'm learning more about the Napoleonic War from this series, despite the fictional dragons. It's an entertaining alternate history, close enough to the "truth" in some scenes to trigger my interest (so I look things up, comparing the historic account with the fictional).

    I liked this 3-part plot, even if the pacing got bogged down in Prussian campaigning (by committee, with outdated strategies). Loved the characters. Here be dragons! Huzzah for the beast-baby Iskierka and for shrewd, swaggering Arkady! We also get a close encounter with Napoleon and threats from Lien, set on avenging her dead captain.

    And here we meet the inscrutable Tharkay, half-Nepalese, half-British, fully ostracized. Totally hot.

    Hopeful ending, when Team Temeraire finally gets to go home, escaping from besieged Danzig / Gdańsk. They have been away from home a full year. The journey has been fraught with fear, hunger, cold, assassinations, accusations, betrayals, avalanches, bandits, feral dragons, fire, and bloody bloody battles.

    Excerpt:

    "But the sky ahead was opening up to a fierce, deep, cloudless blue, an endless road of wind and water before them. A signal was flying from the mast of the Vanguard: "Fair winds, sir!" Turner said, as they passed the ships by. Laurence leaned into the cold sea wind, bright and biting. It scrubbed into the hollows of Temeraire's sides to clean away the last of the eddies of smoke, spilling away in gray trailers behind them...

    Out ahead of them, Arkady began something very like a marching song, chanting lines answered by the other ferals, their voices ringing out across the sky, each to each. Temeraire added his own to the chorus, and little Iskierka began to scrabble at his neck, demanding, "What are they saying? What does it mean?"

    "We are flying home," Temeraire said, translating. "We are all flying home."

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kazren www.ohjohnny.net 06-15-13
    Kazren www.ohjohnny.net 06-15-13 Member Since 2012

    Kazren

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Another wonderful chapter in the Temeraire series"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I am loving the entire series of books, and was thrilled to learn Peter Jackson has bought the wrights to make "His Majesty's Dragon" into a film! This book his hard on Temeraire and Captain Lawrence, but their love and dedication carry them through. It's colorful and brilliantly plotted out, and we get to see more of the world in which they live.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Lawrence - he always does the right thing


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The birth.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Danger at every turn.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alice Columbus, OH, United States 05-02-11
    Alice Columbus, OH, United States 05-02-11 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Temeraire"

    Simon Vance as narrator does not disppoint and the series by Naomi Novik is very good!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shelly La Mesa, CA, United States 04-20-11
    Shelly La Mesa, CA, United States 04-20-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "NEW Interesting characters!"

    LOVED some of the new characters we meet in this book! I enjoyed the places they traveled too and the challenges they faced. One of my favorite books in the entire series and the narrator is a pleasure to listen to as always.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Saud 06-24-10
    Saud 06-24-10

    Learn, understand, then decide whether you accept or reject.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    843
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    "A Return to Form"

    At last, the story of the Napoleonic wars in a world with dragons continues. I enjoyed the story from beginning to end. I especially like the battle/action scenes. I look forward to listening to the fourth book, Empire of Ivory.

    Simon Vance is a narrator who grows on you. I strongly recommend everybody to check out the other works he narrated, and he has narrated a lot.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael 07-22-15
    Michael 07-22-15 Member Since 2014

    Belgarath

    ratings
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    Story
    "Great book, bad accents"
    Where does Black Powder War rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is the third book in the series and it's on par with the rest of them, fairly good.


    Any additional comments?

    Then narrator does a good job of reading but his accents are absolutely awful. EVERYTHING that isn't British sounds like a bad 1950's Charlie Chan movie.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sam 05-12-15
    Sam 05-12-15 Member Since 2015
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    4
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    "Great book. Great quality."

    Finished in 3 days though. Wish the books were cheaper. These books and audible itself is going to make me broke at this rate!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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