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Book review: Dragon Venom - Phil's Rambling Rants
January 27th, 2005
11:27 pm

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Book review: Dragon Venom
Yesterday's book review, which I didn't get around to writing until now, is Dragon Venom by Lawrence Watt-Evans.

This book completes the trilogy which began with Dragon Weather and continued with The Dragon Society.  The first book provided an interesting take on where dragons come from and introduced a reasonably interesting world.  The second book was rather weak, but I hoped that it was middle-of-the-trilogy syndrome and there would be more meat in the third book, which I bought and read on the strength of the first book only.

I was not entirely disappointed.  New and interesting things happened, the nature of the dragons was developed further, and the series plot reached a tentative conclusion.  Still, this book satisfied me less than I'd hoped, because, standard fantasy archetypes notwithstanding, I want my dragons to be nice people, and these, despite being given some justification in the this volume that hadn't been in the first two, are not.  And I find it much easier to follow a story when I can really identify with the main character, and in much of the story, Arlian is a monster who is almost more terrible than the dragons.  His being this way is kind of the point of the story, and it does get better at the end, but it wasn't exactly a feel-good story.  Maybe I would have appreciated it more if I read it when I was less in need of a feel-good story.

So, despite some nice world-building and a reasonably good job of telling the story, I couldn't really get into the story they way I wanted to.  It was a relief to finish the book, partly because of where the characters ended up, but partly just because it was finally over.  7 out of 10.

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