The thrilling adventure of Lady Trent continues in Marie Brennan's The Tropic of Serpents.…
Attentive listeners of Lady Trent’s earlier memoir, A Natural History of Dragons, are already familiar with how a bookish and determined young woman named Isabella first set out on the historic course that would one day lead her to becoming the world’s premier dragon naturalist. Now, in this remarkably candid second volume, Lady Trent looks back at the next stage of her illustrious (and occasionally scandalous) career.
Three years after her fateful journeys through the forbidding mountains of Vystrana, Mrs. Camherst defies family and convention to embark on an expedition to the war-torn continent of Eriga, home of such exotic draconian species as the grass-dwelling snakes of the savannah, arboreal tree snakes, and, most elusive of all, the legendary swamp wyrms of the tropics.
The expedition is not an easy one. Accompanied by both an old associate and a runaway heiress, Isabella must brave oppressive heat, merciless fevers, palace intrigues, gossip, and other hazards in order to satisfy her boundless fascination with all things draconian, even if it means venturing deep into the forbidden jungle known as the Green Hell…where her courage, resourcefulness, and scientific curiosity will be tested as never before.
©2014 Bryn Neuenschwander (P)2014 Macmillan Audio
I love to read, but I am time-limited. Audible allows me to keep up with all my favorite authors while on the hiking trail. Thanks, Audible!
This series really doesn't disappoint. In this installment, Lady Trent visits a warmer climate and accidentally discovers intriguing life cycle and sexually dimorphic characteristics in the local fauna.
The author's excellent writing and the narrator's perfect characterization combine to create the experience of listening to the adventures of a dragon-mad lady naturalist in person. The story blends dragons and realism so deftly. If you like: memoirs by intelligent, witty characters, turn of the century adventure stories, or the idea of dragons as an integral part of the natural world, give this series a try.
I loved the first book in this series, "A Natural History of Dragons". I love this one perhaps even more. Set in a world similar to Victorian England but not quite with Dragons and manners. What fun with the irrepressible Lady Trent leading the way into the modern age.
On level 5 of Robot Hell
Excellent narration, is really what it comes down to. Kate Reading's voice acting was fantastic and gave each character a voice and life of it's own.
As a history buff the touches of the Victorian in the book made me chuckle quite a few times as 'Victorian Modesty' ran smack into the practical side of jungle adventuring.
This second book in the series is not quite as good as the first, but still a lot of fun. Some aspects of the story seem a little forced, and the author still has trouble with the ending - although at least this one isn't nearly as abrupt as the first book. It's good light entertainment, though, and I anticipate many comfortable re-reads.
I listened to the Audible recording of this book and as usual Kate Reading is a pure pleasure. She does a fantastic job of voicing both the elderly Lady Trent and her younger self and excellently captures the personality of a woman who is a serious scientist while also being young, foolish, and inexperienced (and alternately critical and amused by her own adventures). I love the fact that Marie Brennan tells these stories as memoirs - both for the sake of the character and the worldbuilding. Kate Reading's interpretation fits the parts together seamlessly.
It can be hard to find a reader who can manages voices of both sexes competently, with enough variation to tell individuals apart, but Reading doesn't have the least trouble there. In a book full of bewildering names - which can be overwhelming in an audio book - she keeps her characters clear enough that I never had to wonder who was speaking. When the gaps in the plot made me wince, Reading kept me listening. She's a true artist.
The story in this book is better than the first. The main character is almost completely independent and thriving on it. Overall the characters are more interesting and better developed, and the main character is more respected by those around her in this book, which makes it a little easier to read as someone who sympathizes with her character! In addition you learn more about the main character's friend Natalie, who is of the same mindset about breaking traditions. Her character is more of an engineer.
I would be giving away some surprises if I answered that.
Again, Kate Reading is not the best narrator. She lacks a good deal of variety in her characters, and she always tends to end her sentences with the same tones of voice. If you weren't focusing on the words, you would just hear the same musical phrase, over and over and over. But yes, her pace was good.
These questions are silly.
This is a charming book series! I recommend it to any girl or woman who doesn't want the traditional life style of raising children, cooking meals for the family, cleaning the house, etc., or even those who want to branch into a more male-dominated career field. The main character breaks all social boundaries of how women should act in (I'm assuming) the Victorian era. Just because there are dragons in the book does not mean this is futuristic. I believe the author had the Victorian era in mind when women had few rights, and she just reinvented our natural world a little. The story has less to do about dragons and more to do about adventure, mystery, scientific discovery, and following your dreams. However, this book has significantly more interaction with dragons than the first book, and that made it more exciting to read.
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