• Last Dragon Standing

  • Heartstrikers, Book 5
  • By: Rachel Aaron
  • Narrated by: Vikas Adam
  • Length: 13 hrs and 12 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (4,171 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Dear Listener,

There is no way to write a blurb for this final book without spoiling all of the others. Suffice it to say, mysteries resolve, dragons war, pigeons abound, and Julius must risk himself in ways he never dreamed possible as Bob's grand plan finally comes to fruition.

But the Great Seer of the Heartstrikers isn't the only one whose schemes are nearing completion. The Nameless End is coming, and even the machinations of the world's most brilliant dragon seer might not be enough to stop it. As the world comes crashing down, it's up Julius to prove what he's always known: that seers can be wrong, and Nice Dragons don't always finish last.

©2018 Rachel Aaron (P)2018 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about Last Dragon Standing

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Overall, I'm a Little Disappointed...

My thoughts on this final book (reluctant disappointment) are vastly different from my thoughts of the series as a whole (happy feelings). The series is such a unique blend of genres and ideas, with some of the most memorable characters you’ll ever come across. No Good Dragon Goes Unpunished (Book #3) is one of my favorite books I’ve ever read. All that said, although I loved where the story ended, I had quite a few issues with how it got there and can’t help but feel let down by the overall execution of the last two novels of this series.

My #1 Issue: pacing. Rachel Aaron is also known for her super insightful 10000 words a day writing technique (one I’ve tried and it really makes a difference!). Unfortunate, I think all of that unbridled word vomit inevitably led to two final books that were unnecessarily drawn out, wordy, and dialogue-driven than necessary. At least 90% of Last Dragon Standing was strictly dialogue – rehashing ideas and other endless explanations and discussions. The 10% of actual plot advancement was amazing 5-star quality writing, it just took FOREVER to get there. I sincerely think the series could’ve turned out amazing had books 4 and 5 been condensed into a single novel. I did not pick up anything new in book 5 that wasn’t explained 10 different ways throughout book 4, and all of that endless dialogue effectively killed any momentum it had going for it coming into the finale. I maintain that a more concise flow would’ve made for an absolutely KILLER conclusion to this series. Overall, it felt very… self indulgent seems to harsh a phrase, but it definitely looks to me as though the story could’ve benefited from an more impartial outside perspective (such as a publishing house) by requiring a more intensive edit. That’s just my personal opinion on the matter based in part on comparing these last two books to her other trad-pub titles (which had perfect pacing).

Whatever the cause, the end result felt an opportunity wasted.

But is the series still worth reading? That’s an easy: absolutely!

I went into this final book with clear expectations, so I was specifically looking for things to go a certain way. At the end of book 4, I stated: “I swear if they try to rationalize and discuss things with the enemy in the final book, I’m going to throw a fit” … which I did. And: “If she can write at least 50% of the final book without endless dialogue and explanation, I’ll be happy” …which I wasn’t. So you can see how I set myself up for a bit of disappointment. However, the friends I read it with over at Fantasy Buddy Reads didn’t dive in with such a picky mindset, and for the most part loved the dialogue and character immersion this book had to offer. They had so much fun with it, and I was the raincloud on their parade (I hate it when I do that). Also keep in mind that this series produced one of my favorite books EVER (#3) and I still absolutely loved the vast majority of it. I am just feeling very over-critical of the final installment. For what it’s worth, I really like how it ended. :)

Recommendations: Heartstrikers is an excellent series to dive into if you like fun characters, dragons, great world-building, more dragons, and awesome moments. My personal issues with the final book aside, it’s a unique series well worth your time of you’re in the mood to have some fun. :)

Niki Hawkes - The Obsessive Bookseller

20 people found this helpful

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So much talking

Book 4 was defined by the characters talking earnestly to each other, and not doing much else. This book is no different, and caps the series in a disappointing way. Talking is not a substitute for action, and when the main character's solution to the universe-ending problems was to talk their way through, I almost stopped listening. It's such an interesting and vibrant world, it's such a disappointment that we got to see so little of it between all the earnest talking and convincing. Literally, of everyone. Every single time something needed done. I feel like I need to listen to a Dresden novel for a while, just to remind myself what action really is.

18 people found this helpful

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An amazing ending to an even more amazing series!

The story and narration as always were wonderful. I'm very sad that the story has ended but all stories have end at some point. I finished it one go :$ The series is definitely worth more than a read. Looking forward to any new projects!

17 people found this helpful

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Lots of explaining and reiterating

Really enjoyed this series, start to finish! The author does slider into quite a bit of restarting plot points towards the end of the series though. I'm sure it's for the readers benefit but after making it through the entire WOT series, I've developed a distaste for to much of that.

12 people found this helpful

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A perfect end to a wonderful series!

When I started listening to Last Dragon Standing yesterday I intended to listen for an hour and then put the book aside. The last Heartstrikers book was something something I wanted to take my time with. No such luck. I literally could not stop listening until the book was finished!

Excited to see what Rachel will do next!

12 people found this helpful

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Great Finish

The fitting in to a great series. Very well written, with excellent naration. What a great way to relax and escape.

10 people found this helpful

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Awesome ending to a great series!

Where does Last Dragon Standing rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It's definitely up there, at least in my top 20.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I would have to say my favorite character this book was Bob, seeing as we see all his plans and how they came through.

What does Vikas Adam bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

The awesome range of voices and the emotions behind them.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Spoiler
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When Bob gives up his powers and future with his nameless end(though temporarily) to save Julius's life.
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Any additional comments?

A good solid ending to the series. Sometimes you have to end something well rather than trying to extend it as long as possible and losing quality. This series had a nice length, quality story and great ending. What else can you ask for?

8 people found this helpful

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Aaron and Adam -- A great combination

If you could sum up Last Dragon Standing in three words, what would they be?

Imagination with class.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Last Dragon Standing?

Although there were many memorable moments, I think the most memorable for me was finding out about Chelsie, the Emperor, F-clutch and how they were freed was most memorable.

What about Vikas Adam’s performance did you like?

He was incredible. He kept each character's voice the same from book to book and I could recognize them. I especially love his voices for Bob, Amelia, the Black Reach, and Frederick. These characters were so unique and he nailed it by choosing voices that made the rest harmonize into the song that was the story of the Heartstrikers.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Each one was; but not the whole series.

Any additional comments?

I love these books. I love the story line that brought new colors to an old plot. I love the characters that were both just characters and symbols of many messages used only if you wanted to read them. Ms. Aaron did not hit me over the head with tolerance or finding new ways of compromise or that the past does not have to rule the future but can be a source of learning how to change to make a better future.But I also just plain love dragons and Ms. Aaron has brought new visuals of beautiful dragons with flames of many colors, with feathers, with scales, and with hearts and souls of fire. She describes an earth that is full of spirit and spirits who watch over all its life and keep it balanced unless something (usually man) interferes. Her descriptions are inspired and imaginative and paint such incredible portraits, landscapes, bas reliefs, murals in my mind that I can just flow with the characters and see where I'm going.

Mr. Adams takes all that Ms. Aaron has written and gives it voice, perfect voice for each character, for each spirit, for the narration, for each description. His timing is impeccable.

8 people found this helpful

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Well done.

That was an excellent wrap up the series. I enjoyed the closure on everything. Hope your next series is as good.

6 people found this helpful

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Provides Closure To Fun Series

The conclusion to Heartstrikers series did not disappoint me. Sure, the key elements of this series are no longer fresh, but, wanted to hear the ending. Will I live my life differently after listening to all five books? No, but the books added some fun to my days and nights.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Thomas P Scott
  • 04-08-18

One of my favourite series.

it was always a joy to read the next book in the series. it saddens me greatly to see it go. but it was such a great journey.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Skywise
  • 03-31-18

A perfect ending to a wonderful tale!

Not wanting to spoiler, I can only say that love this epic conclusion to the Heartstrikers. It rounds up a series that includes some of my favourite characters and the inspired narration brings this amazing world to life.

It is a rare series where I want the story to continue but have to admit this ending is perfect ... unless you have other ideas, Rachel. :)

1 person found this helpful

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  • Urban fantasy fan
  • 11-28-21

Great final!

I have been listening to this books back to back and I must say they are simply brilliant. I am looking forward to see more from this author. I hope she writes more books about this world.

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  • linda
  • 03-13-21

outstanding

one of the best book series I have followed. Not only is the story line brilliant,but the narrator was equally superb. I highly recommend this .

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 02-14-21

Brilliant Series

Exciting plot, strong well developed characters, excellent world building, slow building romance. This series had it all. The narration was excellent with distinct voices for each character. The only very small downside was a bit too much technical detail in a few places. Otherwise a really enjoyable series. I will be looking out for more from Rachel and Vikas.

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  • EC W
  • 11-08-19

What an ending!

Sometimes a series runs out of steam by book 5, but not this one. Even halfway through the last book doom still seemed certain and I was wondering how Rachel Aaron was going to pull it all together. Then the ipod broke. This caused some chaos as my two boys (aged 11 & 13) and I all wanted to listen to it together to prevent spoilers ...

I'm not even going to try and explain the plot. If you haven't read any of the others, you certainly shouldn't start here. With dragon seers using their powers to view the future to influence current events, you definitely need to read them in the correct order. Nothing is certain until it is past.

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  • Alice Watchorn
  • 05-16-19

Heartstriker series for the win!

An awesome series full of moments where you’ll find yourself grinning like a fool whilst on the tube. Beautifully read, loved the narration and the voices for each of the dragons. Definitely a very happy big kid right now! I just wish there were more books...!

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  • emmoff
  • 03-04-19

A satisfying conclusion

A fabulous conclusion to a great, laugh out loud, series. The narration by Vikas Adam is sublime, he really takes the books to another level.

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  • Katy
  • 09-03-18

dragon delight

loved the series. A fantastic modern twist on dragon folklore, bringing them thoroughly into the 21st century. great narration. the 5th and last book finished the series so well.