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The Dragon's Path (The Dagger and the Coin #1)

3.77  ·  Rating Details  ·  12,358 Ratings  ·  901 Reviews
All paths lead to war...

Marcus' hero days are behind him. He knows too well that even the smallest war still means somebody's death. When his men are impressed into a doomed army, staying out of a battle he wants no part of requires some unorthodox steps.

Cithrin is an orphan, ward of a banking house. Her job is to smuggle a nation's wealth across a war zone, hiding the gol
Paperback, 555 pages
Published April 7th 2011 by Orbit (first published January 1st 2011)
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May 09, 2011 j rated it really liked it
The star rating system is vague and imperfect. My feelings on this one are somewhere between "liked it" and "really liked it," but I decided to give it four stars because if any author deserves an extra star, it is Daniel Abraham. His first published series, The Long Price Quartet, has been named among the best fantasy series of the last decade by just about everyone whose opinion I respect. As a reward for his efforts, he was dropped by his publisher.

You could argue that this is justified, sin
The Dragon's Path is the first book in a planned 5 book series. I found it very similar to ASOIAF in the complexity of it's characters and the scope of the political and military struggles. Abraham has worked with GRRM for many years and he's obviously learned a lot in his time getting coffee, helping kill off the Starks and fighting off angry fans who want to know when 'Winds of Winter' will be released.

This book is told using the same chapter/POV style as ASOIAF. After reading a lot of books
Jun 08, 2014 Carol. rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of epic fantasy
Shelves: epic-fantasy
Three and a half stars.

I cut my reading teeth on fantasy and science fiction. A regular at the local library, I had gone through their “SF/F” offerings by early teens (which is how I came to read The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant) and relied on my babysitting money and the local Waldenbooks for more current fare. The scarcity of material meant I re-read books I owned many, many times. As a result, when I encounter something that feels new in fantasy, that has a fresh take or inspired writing, I
Igor Ljubuncic
Feb 25, 2016 Igor Ljubuncic rated it liked it
Shelves: daniel-abraham
OK, so this is a weird book.

The fact Martin, GRR is a buddy did not help. Because I could not escape the feeling of heavy influence on our present author.

It seems Daniel has heard of epic books and that, if you want praise from Martin, should contain dragons, puppet shows, nice clothes, a sense of noble melancholy and pending doom, characters that are gritty and confused and human, and such like.

Sounds good.

But the execution is, like I mentioned, weird. First, there are three or four main charac
11/4/2014: I didn’t go in to this book expecting to be disappointed (quite the opposite, in fact). It just worked out that way.

Firstly, The Dragon’s Path is the first in a five book epic fantasy series. It’s a multiple POV novel, in the style of GRRM, although with only four POV characters instead of who knows how many at this point. The four characters are Dawson Kalliam, a noble who gets embroiled in political intrigue of the court; Cithrin Belsarcour, a young orphan raised as a ward of a bank
Executive Summary: An enjoyable start to a fantasy series that seems to focus more on politics and the economy than it does on battles and magic.

Audio book: I initially really struggled with the audio book. This wasn't Pete Bradbury's fault. Rather there is a lot sort of dumped on you at the beginning and it would have been nice to go back and reread which isn't always possible for me when I'm listening.

By the second day I had my bearings though, and will continue on with this series in audio mo

4.5 Stars

When it comes to writing modern fantasy it appears that authors need to do one of two things. They need to write something unique or edgy, something or a treatment not seen before. A prime example being how J.R.R Tolkien took Norse mythology and turned it into his own mythology of the world or how Brandon Sanderson took the idea of the physics' based magic system and made it his own. The second thing authors can do is to write very, very well: the best examples being E.R.R Eddison or Me
I really enjoyed this multiple POV low fantasy story. This was the first Daniel Abraham I've read, although I've enjoyed his work in the writing duo James S.A. Corey.

The characters are diverse and although it's seldom the case in multiple POV books, I found myself invested in all of them. I usually have favourites and not-this-one-again's fairly early in a series of this sort, but that didn't happen this time. I found each of the main characters engaging and interesting enough that I was always
Emma Deplores Goodreads Censorship
I'd heard great things about this author in the corners of the internet I frequent, so trying out his new book seemed like a good idea. The beginning didn't grab me, but in the first chapter we meet an acting troupe putting on a play that so cleverly mocks epic fantasy--"despite the actor's warnings [that anything could happen], the good triumphed, the evil were vanquished"--that I was intrigued enough to continue. And so I did, even though as of about halfway through the book I found myself dis ...more
May 11, 2015 Lisa rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, epic-fantasy
Full Review at Tenacious Reader:

The book is reminiscent of a historical fantasy. There are references to dragons and different races of humans, but really there is not much “fantastical” (creatures or magic) in this book. Which is honestly fine by me as I most of my favorite books are low fantasy. There are four main characters that are really two sets of two, meaning Cithrin and Marcus’s storylines intersect and Geder and Dawson’s storylines intersect. T
Apr 19, 2015 Kaitlin rated it it was ok
First up, let's get something clear, this book doesn't have any actual Dragons in it, despite the name, and The Dragon's Path is actually a road which connects various places in this world which was once made by Dragons (back when they were in the world). I don't know if going into this book I should have known that there were no dragons, because I would say that the title is misleading, but unfortunately I didn't realise and therefore the distinct lack of Dragons was a source of constant disapp ...more
Paul Nelson
Dec 08, 2012 Paul Nelson rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2012-books-read
The Dragon's Path follows four main protagonists: Geder, a noble in military service, Cithrin, the determined ward of a bank threatened by invasion, Marcos the military hero who's chequered past leads him to take Cithrin under his wing and Dawson, a noble conspiring to protect his King against traitors and rebellion.

All four of them are all flawed in some way creating interesting situations as their story's develop.
Cithrin is an orphan with a flair for business, coming into adulthood, she begin
May 19, 2015 Lee rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
After finishing the Long Price Quartet series I was keen to keep going with Mr Abrahams. So kept straight into Dagger and Coin.
I have given this story only 3 stars, which feels a bit tough, but at the end of the day, that is one of the problems of going from book 3 in one series to book 1 in another from the same author.
In The Dragons Path Abrahams uses the time and pages to introduce the story and the characters. There is nothing in the story that holds surprises and the characters develop in
Aside from two and a half books in The Expanse series co-written under the name James S.A. Corey, I'd never read anything of Daniel Abraham's, so I didn't know what to expect coming into this book, other than it would be fantasy rather than SF. And that I would probably like it, if the enjoyment I get out of the Expanse books is any indication.

And I did like it... though not QUITE as much as their SF effort. At times, I was reminded of GRRM's ASOIAF series, and kept drawing little comparisons.
Jun 18, 2011 Justin rated it really liked it

The Dragon's Path marks the sixth book I've read from Daniel Abraham and the first time I've reviewed an author twice. Abraham has been a favorite of mine ever since his Long Price Quartet. His more recent science fiction debut, Leviathan Wakes, under the pseudonym James S.A. Corey was also impressive. Although Abraham's first series never garnered wide spread popularity, I never doubted he would one day put himself among the bestselling authors in the spe
Excellent series debut and while a partly introductory book, there are a lot of goodies, a great ending at a perfect stopping point and potential for this to become of my top series of all time.

I will add more as the release date gets closer and of course I will add the full FBC review later in the year but for now if you want a reasonable comparison, i would say that this reads like a much better Way of Kings without all the unnecessary verbiage that was such a drag there - traditional fantasy
Sarah Anne
This wasn't quite what I expected. How many times have I said that? I was expecting this to have a lot more battle scenes and war. Did I just not read the synopsis? The great part about it, other than the lack of blood and violence, was that this left a great deal of room for focusing on the characters, and the characters were really great. Each of the POV characters was extremely likable. Not always honorable or good, but very very likable. I admit that banking and finance are not my thing but ...more
Mike (the Paladin)
This is another case where I "feel" I should open with an apology. Many of my friends here love this book...and the series I assume. It sounded good and I had purchased it a while back, I was in a slump so I decided to read it.

Look, the book is well written in some ways. The characters are complete...really'll be really, really completely informed. The book revolves around a story with political intrigue, religious upheaval... traveling players, smugglers, bankers, merchants, sold
Nov 06, 2011 Tyson rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, 2011
A good start to a series, but I had a few quibbles.

1) Daniel Abraham (DA) needs to write more from the gut and less from the brain. His books come across as if he's over-intellectualizing everything. It really sucks the life out of the narrative sometimes. I can't write worth a shit, and DA is one of the top 5 fantasy writers working today, but sometimes I want to sit him down and explain a few things about exciting narrative to him. It's hard to describe what I mean, but everything he writes se
Jul 04, 2013 Patremagne rated it really liked it
Full review on my blog -

The Dragon's Path by Dan Abraham was an interesting read for me. I hadn't read the Long Prince Quartet, so I was new to his writing style. I've grown accustomed to the multiple POV stories, and I tend to lean more toward those when picking a new book. Being a fan of A Song of Ice and Fire (unique, right?), I read reviews that told about how much of the novel was political battles rather than real ones. This can be offputting to som
Oct 31, 2015 Kathleen rated it liked it
Audiobook and e-book, interchangeably. Fantasy with more focus on politics and economics than supernatural or swordplay. Mythos is obscure, slowly developing over the series. The 13 races of humanity (confusing to keep track of in audiobook) are described at author's website:

Written in 3rd person, most of the book follows four key characters, each chapter title bearing the pertinent character's name. There's a 5th POV added near the end, for Clara. Plus,
Tom Merritt
Jul 26, 2012 Tom Merritt rated it it was amazing
Who knew when I finished Leviathan Wakes and found an entire novel for free that I'd be so pleased. I was cheering for a banker and hissing at the underdog. And it all made sense. Well done Mr. Abraham.
Mar 24, 2015 Sky rated it really liked it
The Dragon's Path was a great first novel in a series I am looking forward to finishing. I found the focus on both economics (coin) and military might (dagger) rather than traditional fantasy tropes quite refreshing. Indeed it seems Abraham did a lot of research on medieval banking systems in preparing for this book.

The world building was a little off...Lots of details were thrown out that really didn't have any significance to the book. For example, it was hard to keep the 12 races in the book
Mikko Karvonen
Jul 15, 2012 Mikko Karvonen rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy-scifi
Having missed The Long Price Quartet, The Dragon’s Path was my first encounter with Daniel Abraham’s work. I was not hugely impressed, but still somewhat intrigued.

The basic setting of the series is a very familiar. You have your nobles engaged in intrigue, several characters to offer different viewpoints to the two main plotlines driving the book, and the vague threat from the forgotten past. The ways to wield power seems to be the major theme here, as indicated by the name of the series The Da
Jun 07, 2014 Emily rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, 2011
I’ve seen a lot of comments about how this isn’t as good as The Long Price Quartet, and I agree that it hasn’t had as strong of a start, but this is Daniel Abraham, and I think that wherever he’s going with The Dagger and The Coin is going to be worth the wait.

This book is a long introduction to the characters and the world, its politics and dangers. Still, there are smaller story arcs that are worked through in this book, leaving the larger ones to continue. I appreciate when an author can do t
Mar 16, 2016 Helen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Due to unexpected guests, I was unable to read this for five days and struggled with it after.

I found Cithrin to be bratty but the other main characters were enjoyable.
Mogsy (MMOGC)
Feb 13, 2013 Mogsy (MMOGC) rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, epic
3.5 stars. This book didn't really hook me until the last 20%. I'm not sure why, but I suspect it has a lot to do with the characters and my struggle to connect with any of them early in the book, and I'm still not really sure why I found it so difficult.

It could be the author's writing style; the book is structured into chapters where each one is told from a character's point of view, much like the Song of Ice and Fire books, but whereas I had no problems with connecting to the many characters
Ross Evans
May 27, 2013 Ross Evans rated it really liked it
Daniel Abraham is one of those authors that somehow slipped under my radar for the longest time. I’d vaguely heard about him before and I knew that he was chums with George R.R. Martin. I was initially put off by the cover of The Dragon’s Path due to the fact that it had a pretty cheesy sword on the cover. It kind of reeked of “old school” fantasy which isn’t something I’m too fond of these days. With a bold quote by none other than George R.R. Martin on his cover proclaiming, “Everything I look ...more
I started to re-reread the book. The beginning may be a bit slow for some readers. I enjoyed the slow start and enjoyed the description of people and country.
So far I read 245 pages (2016-02-6)
I finished the book on 2016-02-13. It was a satisfying book and I'm really nosy to read what will happen next to the main characters. Of course there was a lot of introduction and information but all servers for a great story. I like Cithrin, Geder, and Marcus. Each character has something I like and even
Oct 26, 2013 Aildiin rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, novels
This is the second fantasy series by Daniel Abraham that I read. The first one was critically acclaimed but sold poorly, probably due to the lack of action in most books.
This book has a lot more action and a lot more characters and is probably more typical of classic epic fantasy.
The main characters are a young female orphan adopted by a banker that somehow will try to start her own bank ( the coin in the series name)and an old mercenary captain that will somehow take her under his protection du
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Daniel Abraham is an American science fiction / fantasy author who lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He is a graduate of Clarion West, and sometimes collaborates with George R. R. Martin, another New Mexico resident.

His short stories have appeared in numerous publications and anthologies. His novelette Flat Diane was nominated for the Nebula Award. His novelette The Cambist and Lord Iron: a Fairyt
More about Daniel Abraham...

Other Books in the Series

The Dagger and the Coin (5 books)
  • The King's Blood (The Dagger and the Coin, #2)
  • The Tyrant's Law (The Dagger and the Coin, #3)
  • The Widow's House (The Dagger and the Coin, #4)
  • The Spider's War (The Dagger and the Coin, #5)

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