Synopsis according to Goodreads:
"Aerial combat brings a thrilling new dimension to the Napoleonic Wars as valiant warriors ride mighty fighting dragons, bred for size or speed. When HMS Reliant captures a French frigate and seizes the precious cargo, an unhatched dragon egg, fate sweeps Captain Will Laurence from his seafaring life into an uncertain future – and an unexpected kinship with a most extraordinary creature.
Thrust into the rarified world of the Aerial Corps as master of the dragon Temeraire, he will face a crash course in the daring tactics of airborne battle. For as France’s own dragon-borne forces rally to breach British soil in Bonaparte’s boldest gambit, Laurence and Temeraire must soar into their own baptism of fire."
His Majesty's Dragon combines two things I never considered as pairing: dragons, and the Napoleonic Wars. I was skeptical at first, but Novik managed to give me more than just a Horatio Hornblower story. And now I can't believe nobody put dragons into the 1800s before!
It's the first in a series (of 8, so far), and damned it all, I'm going to have to continue this series. Not only was the audiobook narrator fantastic, the characters intriguing, and the battle understandable *and* thrilling....I want to live in this world. It's the first time in a long time that I want to keep reading a series not because of the main character, or a cliffhanger plot, but because the world is so intriguing.
Believe me when I say, you don't need to enjoy battle fiction, or know anything about the Napoleonic Wars (although if you do, Novik's creative liberties are more clever). You don't even have to like the Regency era. Hell, you don't even have to like dragons! At its heart, it's a story of a dutiful man and his intelligent steed/pet/friend. It's got humor, action, and a lot of fresh dose into the ol' sword-and-sorcery genre of fantasy.
I recommend it for fans of fantasy, dragons, the Regency era, human/animal bonds, aerial anything, and historical fiction.
Labels: 1800s, audiobook, book review, british, dragons, fantasy, his majesty's dragon, historical fantasy, naomi novik, napoleonic wars, regency