Today’s book is the last in a series, Naomi Novik’s Temeraire novels. I figure I should let you know that before I go on. I’ll try not to give spoilers, but instead to talk about how the series as a whole affected me. If you aren’t familiar with the series, you can take a look at the first book, His Majesty’s Dragon, on Ms. Novik’s website.
The concept behind the series is awesome, just the kind of thing I love to read: a Royal Navy captain becoming a dragon rider (!) to fight Napoleon. There are so many dragons in this series, and they’re very well-characterized, well enough to love or hate on their own merits.
Novik’s prose is excellent. That wins a lot of points with me. I like the plot overall; but I felt like the pacing was off, especially in the latter books of the series (where the story becomes something of an enticing travelogue), and in this last book in particular. It was overall delicious, but I wish more of the battles had been actually written out. At least twice, at pivotal moments, the text cut to the aftermath instead of showing me what had happened, and I love the battle scenes in this series, so I was a little disappointed.
Overall, though, I strongly recommend the first book at the very least, just so you can see if you like the taste of it. I loved it enough that I am just miserable that it’s over. If Novik should revisit the world in the future, I demand more Granby. He was my favorite.