Blood of Dragons -

Disclaimer: I won this as an ARC from Goodreads First Reads Giveaway.

 

TW: Rape. The scene is neither titillating nor is the act graphically detailed. It’s tragically unsurprising and its inclusion is narratively unavoidable. As a survivor I found it relatable and wasn’t triggered thought that will vary. Its aftermath is particularly well done and unifying like group therapy.

 

 

The Rain Wilds are known for its priceless treasure but it comes at a cost paid for by its people in blood and pain. One motley crew travels farther up river than anyone else in centuries making discoveries and sacrifices others could only dream of. They succeeded on a fool’s errand (it should’ve been Fool’s anyways…) but surviving will take more as the piranhas swarm to rip apart the colony they’ve cobbled together.

 

Now, they must keep searching for the impossible while protecting the meager beginning they’ve founded if they Dragons and Elderlings have any hope of returning. Will it all be for naught? It’s a soaring fantasy filled with action, adventure, drama, and romance with some treachery, conspiracies, and war.

 

Take an amazing journey about finding oneself and making your own life whether it’s coming of age, out of the closet or midlife realizations. They battle each other as they war within themselves with what they want and the boxes society has shoved them into while dealing with larger scale corruption, and oppression. They re-discover history and themselves, walking the tight rope between traditions and adaptation.

 

Blood of Dragons was so good, I lingered. Amid the action and drama, I found myself stopping to savor it all along the way. As much as I wanted to know the outcome, I dreaded not having more of it to read. Then the threads started twisting more and verging on merging so, its last quarter was unputdownable.

 

Pros

Conclusion is thorough and satisfying yet makes me want to read more

Villains have clear motivations with on point mindsets beyond matte evil

Realistic and brilliant showing of re-establishing Kelsingra

Breath-taking, descriptive, clever writing

Flush & vibrant world building

Awesomely dynamic & diverse characters

Spot-on switching perspectives

Love the mini-story between Keepers of the Birds told through messages at beginning of chapters, which ends well and lends meaning and depth to the whole.

Character growth galore

Pitch-perfect tempo

Love how dragons have been built, evolved, and grown, not just as creatures but as characters

Love how Hobb’s fantasy worlds don’t stay static in technology or culture, there’s always people striving forward and some stubbornly holding back, geography changes, animals adapt which makes Hobb’s world feel more real like it adds another dimension

Young adult triangle is handled in a logical, genuine and arresting way with a refreshing conclusion

Loved the Cast of Characters descriptions (e.g., “Grisby: Ship’s cat. Orange and insouciant.”) but I’ve never had a problem remembering characters when reading Hobb. I hadn’t even realized how many I was keeping track of until browsing the list.

Dying to know…everything & YAY when we discover more but there’s plenty to ponder before and after reading, which I find exciting rather than frustrating because their world is so rich, it’s full of discoveries to make

 

Thoughts:

Humans could never accept the world as it was and live in it. They were always breaking it and living among the shattered pieces. ---Blood of Dragons, pg. 88.

  

The ending was so exhilarating. It made me fist-pump and shout along. After all they endured, it was rewarding and brought full closure to the whole ordeal.

 

It makes me excited to read more Realm of the Elderlings books. Of course, I want to see how their settlement fairs in the future and follow these characters again. However, I’m also dying to see how it effects their world and what happens when they collide with the Six Dutchies.

 

And where the fuck is my Fool? Damn it, xe missed it! After everything done for Elderlings and dragons too. Fool was robbed, robbed. Okay, so I understand why xe wasn’t included yet…I can’t help but feel for my favorite character ever. (

 

I was right: the conflict with Jerd ends in a non-slut-shaming way though we never read her point of view, sadly. I’d think that’d be interesting extra tidbit but Blood of Dragons is perfect as is and she remains a background character.

 

Thymara took longer than I expected but I’m glad she’s happy and finally found her footing and became her own woman.

 

It was interesting to see dragons manipulate Elderlings and humans beyond just glamor. I understand their resistance to Rapskal’s ideas writ memory stones but I think he’s got the right of it.

 

Bottomline:

Amazing 5 stars

 

 

Recommended for:

everyone. If you want a vibrant fantasy realm with lifelike characters on an epic coming of age journey, The Rain Wild Chronicles are perfect. Hobbs remains my favorite author and highly recommend her books to anyone.