Thursday, March 15, 2012
Crucible of Gold by Naomi Novik
Crucible of Gold is the most recent addition to the Temeraire series by Naomi Novik. This series is one of my recent favorites. The best way to describe it is alternate history -- the Napoleonic Wars, but with dragons. What really stands out for me, though, is the excellent characterization. The dragons are so . . . dragonly (yes, that is totally a word); they have their own morals and personalities. They manage to be both sympathetic and alien -- I never forget, when reading, that Temeraire is not human.
In Crucible of Gold, Laurence and Temeraire travel from Australia to South America, where they discover another entirely different system of government involving humans and dragons . . . as well as another sneaky plot on the part of Napoleon to upset the balance of power in his favor.
I enjoyed this book more than its predecessor, Tongues of Serpents -- it feels like a return to the earlier books. I'm also pleased to note that, while this book doesn't end in a major cliffhanger, it's obvious that there will be more books in the future. I can hardly wait!
If you haven't read the series yet, but are intrigued, the first book is His Majesty's Dragon -- highly recommended to dragon lovers and history buffs alike!
(Reviewed from a personally purchased electronic copy.)