Blood of Tyrants (Temeraire, #8)
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Blood of Tyrants (Temeraire #8)

3.85 of 5 stars 3.85  ·  rating details  ·  1,975 ratings  ·  360 reviews
Shipwrecked and cast ashore in Japan with no memory of Temeraire or his own experiences as an English aviator, Laurence finds himself tangled in deadly political intrigues that threaten not only his own life but England’s already precarious position in the Far East. Age-old enmities and suspicions have turned the entire region into a powder keg ready to erupt at the slight...more
Hardcover, 432 pages
Published August 13th 2013 by Del Rey
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The Republic of Thieves by Scott LynchA Memory of Light by Robert JordanEmperor of Thorns by Mark  LawrenceThe Daylight War by Peter V. BrettThe Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
Can't Wait Sci-Fi/Fantasy of 2013
163rd out of 611 books — 3,140 voters
His Majesty's Dragon by Naomi NovikThe Hobbit by J.R.R. TolkienEragon by Christopher PaoliniBentwhistle The Dragon in A Chilling Revelation by Paul CudeEldest by Christopher Paolini
53rd out of 249 books — 161 voters

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Something strange happened while I was reading Blood of Tyrants... I started to like Temeraire again. This series had me at 'Napoleonic Wars' and 'dragons', but while the first few books ranged from serviceable (His Majesty's Dragon) to standout (Black Powder War), by the time Empire of Ivory rolled around, these books had started to get bogged down in a Carmen Sandiego-esque need to visit exotic world locales and became less about the War or the dragon. For me, the series peaked at Napoleon's i...more

So. I won Blood of Tyrants from First Reads, although I'm still not sure why. I haven't won anything in a Goodreads giveaway in three years, I only rarely enter contests anymore, and my interest in the Temeraire series has been declining lately, but somehow, for some reason, I gave this contest a try and managed to win the book. Stranger things have happened, I guess. Like forgetting that one has a drago...more
I guess i'm the only person who didn't mind the amnesia plot? Given that the Temeraire books are not exactly a font of deep and introspective characterization, even a fairly cheap device like amnesia was fairly effective at wringing some out.

I don't know if this is a particularly unusual way to read the books - my impression is that i'm in a minority, anyway - but I've always cared a great deal more about Lawrence than I have about Temeraire. Temeraire is just kind of twee and cute and modern p...more
I love spending time with Temeraire and Laurence. This book has three distinct storylines, and contains hardship and confusion, struggle and defiance, reunions and sunderings, adventure and humor, and sometimes even sweet success and exultation. And war, when they meet up once again with their arch nemesis, Napoleon.

These dragons are naive and idealistic in their expectations of humans to behave kindly and intelligently, even though they are frequently betrayed by us. Our odd notions of duty and...more
Let me start by saying that Temeraire is easily one of the best characters created in the fantasy genre in the past decade. A fascinating, charming, believable dragon who you would definitely want to be friends with.

Unfortunately, in my opinion, this book suffers from Reverse-Jordanitis. Jordanitis is a terrible disease, named after the late Robert Jordan. Jordanitis (an ailment of my own naming) occurs when an author writes too much about too little (I used to joke that Jordan could write 500 p...more
Blood of Tyrants is the 8th book in Naomi Novik's wonderful alternative history of Napoleonic Wars. Completely re-imagined with the addition of dragons as major weapons of war, Novik has journeyed around the world. While the central conflict between England and France forms the main focus of the series, there have been excursions to Brazil, the Aztecs, Australia, Africa and China. While war has always been a mainstay of the series, the poor treatment of the dragons by the British and other count...more
Advance copy provided by Net Galley-I thought I needed to wait to review it until it was officially released, but the result was that I waited so long to write the review that I forgot why I had only rated it 3 stars originally. I just finished paging through the published copy and feel it deserves a higher rating than my initial one.

Ah, Temeraire and Laurence-one of my absolute favorite literary relationships! That is probably why I was so frustrated with the beginning of the book-they're separ...more
Captain William Laurence has fallen into the sea during a tremendous storm, leaving him stranded in Japan with no memory of the past 7 years or his life with Temeraire. The political situation in Japan is about to explode with William sits in the center.

Vague memories arise but when Temeraire and William are reunited he still can’t remember their friendship and years together.

The story continues as they trek to China and then to Russia. Glimpses of memories resurface but Termeraire is remorsefu...more
Judy Lesley
I would be reluctant to advise anyone I know to begin this series with this specific book. If you have read other novels in the series but missed the last book, the plot device of Captain William Laurance having amnesia will stand you in good stead because you can slowly catch up with what was happening in New South Wales and Brazil as he recovers his memory. As it was I read CRUCIBLE OF GOLD in February of 2012, and I had trouble (along with Laurance) with remembering some of what had taken pla...more
It was only okay for me. And considering most of the rest of the Temeraire series is on my 'touch and you die' shelf at home, that's saying a lot.

The story was kind of disjointed with three different adventures (Japan - Laurence loses his memory, China - the team goes hunting rebels, Russia - Back to fighting Bonaparte). The three tales didn't mesh well or lead easily one to another. I kept forgetting who the characters were in the earlier stories and why they were important.

I also had a hard ti...more
I hated, hated, HATED the soap-opera-esque plot contrivance that dominated the first half of this book, and when it was unceremoniously cast off (with as little logic as it was introduced, I might add) I rejoiced and was able to enjoy the remainder of the book.

I was glad to see some old favorite characters who had been left out of the Australian and South American adventures return, the foray into Temeraire's love life was fun and I enjoyed seeing the Chinese dragons take center stage, as well.

Melissa Proffitt
I wasn't as excited about the last two books in the series, despite my enjoyment of the characters, because I signed up for Napoleonic War alternate history fiction and wasn't as interested in Laurence and Temeraire's wandering around Australia and the Americas. This was a welcome return (at least half of it was) to the War, and Napoleon's aggression on Russia.

The first half, though, is a digression into Japan which I also enjoyed because I like reading about Japanese culture in the 19th century...more
Rk Stark
I am so incredibly disappointed with this book. The author should have waited another year to rethink the extremely poor plot crutch she uses for the first half of the book. Surely she could have come up with something more interesting then amnesia. There was no real need for it except to serve as some sort of stupid explanation of how much Laurence has grown, which could have been much better shown by using Junichiro as a foil.
Junichiro is a young Japanese man who helps Laurence escape to the...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Morgan Dhu
I gather from reading Novik's website that there is only one book remaining in the Temeraire series, to be published sometime next year. It's going to be interesting to see how she ends the Napoleonic Wars... And also to see just where Laurence and Temeraire end up.

With part of this book set in Japan and China - both countries where dragons are fully integrated into society along with humans - and the rest in Russia, where dragons are treated as slaves, with those who will not serve hobbled by...more
4.5, its a really good read, I had a problem with the way lawrance was written in this book, it seemed like a recap of the other books to keep us the reader up to date, but it kinda didnt happen, its hard to explain.

the end is good but another cliffhanger ending.
In Blood of Tyrants, Captain William Laurence and his Dragon Temeraire once again, finally, return to the field of battle.

It's been quite some time (not since the 2008 Victory of Eagles, the fifth volume of the series, as a matter of fact) since the characters have actually taken part in the Napoleonic war. Call me childish or attentively challenged, but it's difficult to give a damn about anything that happens in the series when two out of three books seems to consist of reading about the good...more
This is a terrific series and would make a dragon fan out of St. George, but this book was the toughest one yet. You know how some authors seem to get a kick out of kicking the main character? Well Naomi Novik has raised it to an art form. Also, my 3 least favorite plot twists in ascending order are: flashbacks, amnesia, and separating for long periods of time, characters whose charm, love for each other, and personal chemistry make the whole series work...but only when they're TOGETHER! Aaaargh...more
A few weeks ago, the Napoleonic Wars came up in conversation, as they do, and I started to add a pertinent historical detail…only to suddenly doubt its accuracy. I couldn’t remember whether it had happened in the “real” war or the “Temeraire” war and eventually had to turn to Wiki to remember which version was fact.

One of the areas where fantasy authors often fail is in their worldbuilding. No matter how exciting the plot is or sympathetic the characters, if I don’t believe in their world, I fin...more
Many reviews seem a trifle outraged at the perceived lack of action in this series, particularly in the later books. The Australia book in particular came in for an awful amount of criticism. To me, however, the series is a character study, and an examination of the role of individual consciousness and morality set against unthinking obedience and unbridled patriotism, which happens to be set against the backdrop of the Napoleonic wars. So I positively savour the detours which enable us to incre...more
I was concerned when this volume of the Temeraire series began with three unlikelinesses, but I needn't have worried. It soon improved.

The three unlikely things were:

1. A man wearing a heavy wool coat is swept into the sea and not drowned, but washed up on shore alive. This despite the fact that the reef where he started was far enough out to sea that it apparently couldn't be seen from shore, and despite the fact that:

2. He suffered a head injury, was knocked out, and lost eight years' worth of...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I was entirely up and down about how I felt about this book almost the whole way through. Its starting point had me confused and adrift, much the same as our main (human) character, Lawrence. He is shipwrecked (by himself) on Japan, with no memory of ever being an aviator or anything else that happened during his years with Temeraire. And that was my major issue with the first part of the book--I hated that he couldn't remember Temeraire. It was convenient for the story's sake, and allowed us to...more
Well, colour me surprised, the library had a copy of this after all. so I didn't have to wait too long for it.

The book is divided into three parts. In the first, Captain Laurence is washed up on the shores of Japan after a shipwreck. Struggling with amnesia, he has to find a way through a wholly alien and hostile country to make his way back to his compatriots, and to Temeraire, who he no longer remembers. Some reviewers have disliked this section, and I agree that an amnesia plot is a terrible...more
I’ve never started a series with the last book, and this last book is the 8th book in the series. I’ve been watching closely both Naomi Novik and her series Temeraire for a very long time but could not find the right time to start her series. After reading this book, I’ve added all Temeraire books to my reading list. Hope to re-read this one also in right order after the 7th book.

Thank you Netgalley for helping to experience to start a series with the last book.

I really liked the re-telling of t...more
Craig Meyer
If you’re a fan of alternative history and of dragons, this book is for you. The Temeraire series written by Naomi Novik is a fascinating story about what would be the result of combining dragons during the Napoleonic wars.

The series focuses on two characters. Captain William Laurence, a British naval officer who finds himself in charge of a rare Celestial Dragon from China. The second main character is Temeraire, the celestial dragon. Both characters hav...more
This one reads like three separate stories crammed together.

The first one follows the trend of throwing our heroes into a different country. Their visit to Japan is entirely accidental, without even a mission to justify showing us how yet another culture has been shaped by dragons. I guess it's neat, but it has no real connection to the wider story, except perhaps to stir up longer-term trouble.

The second section is a return to the political turmoil of China. It's a lot more engaging, but it sti...more
The start of this book was very dramatic. Shipwrecked, lost, ruined. Before I knew it was Laurence, I was almost hoping it was Napoleon, awash on the shores of Elba, having been beaten on his way back from his wedding. But it was Laurence, who, apparently, lost his memory. I'm not a big fan of memory loss in a story's, because it's almost too convenient for making conflict. And, of course, he wouldn't remember the time he spent with Temeraire as a dragon captain. Yet, the rest of the story made...more
K.M. Herkes
Each time I grind through the first few chapters of one of the Temeraire books I think, "I will never finish this. This is the last one I will read." Every time, I change my mind after a few more, and I am always looking forward to the next adventure by the time I'm done with the book.

Naomi Novik has a distinctive writing style, and she makes no compromises in presenting her story her way. The narrative, heavy on internals, light on dialogue and subtle in description, takes some getting used to...more
Best of the series so far!

The Temeraire series, for those not familiar with it, is set during the time of the Napoleonic wars, and is quite historically accurate - with the addition of dragons as weapons of war. :-)

As the series has progressed, we have visited just about every continent, and we see how dragons are treated differently, and how the cultures of those countries differ, due to how they view their dragons. And dragons are not just dumb beasts. They are intelligent, and can speak (man...more
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An avid reader of fantasy literature since age six, when she first made her way through The Lord of the Rings, Naomi Novik is also a history buff with a particular interest in the Napoleonic era and a fondness for the work of Patrick O’Brian and Jane Austen. She studied English literature at Brown University, and did graduate work in computer science at Columbia University before leaving to partic...more
More about Naomi Novik...
His Majesty's Dragon (Temeraire #1) Throne of Jade (Temeraire, #2) Black Powder War (Temeraire #3) Empire of Ivory (Temeraire, #4) Victory of Eagles (Temeraire, #5)

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“It is not as though we have not heard of you, Captain Laurence. We have all had a great many arguments, whether your aid would not be too expensive, to begin with.”

“Sir,” Laurence said, now baffled, “I beg your pardon; however should you know me from Adam?”

“If the world had not heard of you, after your adventure at Gdansk,” Kutuzov said, meaning Danzig, where they had rescued the garrison from the wreck of the Prussian campaign, “or after the plague, we should certainly have heard of you after Brazil. Where you go, you leave half the world overturned behind you. You are more dangerous than Bonaparte in your own way, you and that beast of yours.”
“The water-dragon’s name was Lady Kiyomizu, although much to Junichiro’s horror she breezily told Laurence to call her Kiyo, and not to stand on formality. “You have no manners anyway,” she said, “and there is no sense your trying to put out sakura blossoms, when you are a bamboo.” 3 likes
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