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Named of the Dragon
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Named of the Dragon

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3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  1,082 ratings  ·  96 reviews
Tormented by horrific nightmares since the death of her baby five years before, literary agent Lyn Ravenshaw agrees to accompany an author to Wales, where she encounters an eccentric young widow desperately afraid for her own infant's safety and a reclusive playwright who could be her only salvation
Paperback, 295 pages
Published October 1st 1999 by Berkley (first published July 13th 1998)
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Outlander by Diana GabaldonThe Winter Sea by Susanna KearsleyThe Rose Garden by Susanna KearsleyThe Forgotten Garden by Kate MortonMariana by Susanna Kearsley
Dual Time Romances
39th out of 179 books — 452 voters
Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha ChristieDeath in Zanzibar by M.M. KayeDeath in Cyprus by M.M. KayeCrocodile on the Sandbank by Elizabeth PetersDeath in Kenya by M.M. Kaye
Novels That Let You Travel in Retro Style
8th out of 34 books — 6 voters


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Community Reviews

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Hannah
Another winner from Susanna Kearsley, who is on the fast track for overtaking some of my favorite "spooky" writers, Barbara Michaels, Barbara Erskine and Mary Stewart.

Canadian writer Kearsley pens the kind of books I particularly enjoy (and have a hard time finding) for a weekend read - an atmospheric, somewhat romantic mystery set in Europe (particularly Great Britain) and containing historic or mythic references. Named of the Dragon is set in a small coastal village in Wales, and references Te...more
Katrina Passick Lumsden
A friend of mine here on Goodreads (I'm lookin' at you, Jill) told me that the first three books I read from Susanna Kearsley (The Rose Garden, The Winter Sea, and Mariana) were probably her best work.

I think Jill was right.

Don't get me wrong, I didn't hate this book. No matter what, Kearsley's talent with words and gift for world building captivate me, but the storyline, pacing, and characterization in Named of the Dragon left something to be desired.

First, let's get a feel for the setting.

A...more
Rio (Lynne)
Kearsley's writing is unique. She holds my interest even when her books aren't fast paced or full of page turning storylines. Named of the Dragon, like many of her other books, simply follows characters everyday lives, nothing really happening, but she keeps me interested with the location, characters and her witty way of throwing history into the fold. In this book Lyn, a literally agent goes to Pembroke for Christmas with one of her clients. Knowing Pembroke's history, I'm intrigued. She stays...more
Carol Kerry-green
My fourth Kearsley novel and though it didn't live up to Marianna or The Winter Sea, it was nevertheless an excellent thriller to the end. I certainly didn't see the ending coming, which is always nice, so often it's easy to guess where a book is going, this one kept me thinking right to the end.

Lynette Ravenshaw accepts an invitation from Bridget Cooper, one of the author's she represents at the literary agency she works for, to spend Christmas holidays with her and her boyfriend James Swift in...more
Jillian Mcclelland
Oh, I liked this. But then, I love everything Kearsley writes, so I am a bit biased. Although I believe this was her first novel, it set the tone and style that she would continue to use throughout her other books. A blending of past and present, mythology and fact, and romance with suspense that is always engrossing and completely entertaining. Lyn Ravenshaw is a great heroine; a little bullheaded, but endearing and relatable. I think at this point Kearsley wasn't sure how to flesh out a palpab...more
Krystal
This Kearsley gem is more along the lines of her more thriller/mystery books with the splash of paranormal, similar to Season of Storms or The Shadowy Horses. Fans of her more romantic books, like The Rose Garden, might be a little disappointed. The romance aspect is only hinted at throughout and doesn't really resolve until the very end. Which was fine by me. I was kept more than occupied with the spooky happenings at a fabulous Welsh home, all spiced up with Arthurian legend - a new one for Ke...more
Christy B
Set in Wales, Named of the Dragon is probably Kearsley's most suspenseful novel to date.

Literary agent Lyn Ravenshaw agrees to spend the Christmas holiday with her client Bridget, a children's book author. Bridget has invited Lyn to Wales, where she is spending Christmas with James Swift, an author represented by another agent. Bridget incites Lyn to accompany her by dropping a few hints that Swift is not happy with his current agent and Lyn jumps at the chance.

In Wales, Lyn meets their neighbo...more
Shellys♥ Journal
Susanna Kearsley's "Named of the Dragon" Named the Dragon is one of Susana Kearsley's first books, and while she is still mastering her style in this tale, it still drips with the mysterious connections and intriguing plot lines that have characterized her later works. Lyn is a London literary agent invited to Wales for Christmas by one of her clients. She still nurses wounds from a baby lost many years ago. In this mysterious environment, she stumbles across another little boy whom she must hel...more
Alyson
Jan 02, 2014 Alyson rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Alyson by: Sofie Skapski
Shelves: 2013, fiction
I read this quite quickly over a few days, the bulk of it on Christmas day because the book itself takes place in the weeks before Christmas so it felt fitting. I've read a few by Susanna Kearsley (Author) by now so I've come to expect the supernatural aspects; how interesting, then, that in this one the supernatural element—the heroine being warned/coached in dreams—turned out to be something of a red herring. It really nothing to do with what was actually happening in real life in the current-...more
Ali
Oct 22, 2011 Ali rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: romace
I actually give this book a 3.75. I was wasn't disappointed per se, it just had a different feel from the other Kearsely books I've read. The connection to Julia Beckett(Mariana) had me on a high though. That was a little welcome delight.

I felt like I wanted to smack the majority of men in this book. Their egos were killing me. I did however like the way Kearsley made you want to hate and love them though. She really puts thought to who they are and what drives them.

The setting was lushly writt...more
Debra
Different from the other Susanna Kearsley books I've read, Named of the Dragon is still a well written story, filled with interesting secondary characters and a love interest for the female protagonist. I didn't enjoy it as much as Mariana, The Shadowy Horses, The Winter Sea, etc, probably because the elements of time travel, hauntings and other supernatural occurrences, combined with a strong love story, was not quite missing, but not quite strongly present either.
Annie
Firstly, let me state that I adore Susanna Kearsley! I had the fortunate circumstance (or misfortune, depending how you look at it) to read "Mariana" first, and I consider that to be one of her finest works. Partly, because I believe she has matured as a writer quite a bit between "Named of the Dragon" and "Mariana." This particular Kearsley novel was entertaining and as always, placed in a breathtaking and intriguing part of the world and I appreciated that Ms. Kearsley went to great lengths to...more
JC at All is Read
So Named of the Dragon is one of Kearsley's earlier novels and while I feel that her latter books have been better, this one did not disappoint. Kearsley once again transports us to a beautiful, majestic setting that is the town of Angle. She weaves together a tale of Arthurian Legend and English history that kept me both immersed in and captivated by the plot.

The main protagonist Lyn, short for Lynette is a widow of five years not only losing her husband but her child as well. On a whim she obl...more
Sarah
Named of the Dragon is the second book I've read by Susanna Kearsley and I think she is my new favorite light read author! I'm not really sure how to classify her genre-wise. This novel was an atmospheric story about a literary agent who goes to a small village in Wales on holiday with some friends, and gets drawn into the life of a young woman who is afraid for the safety of her baby. There was some light romance and a touch of paranormal, and the plot was engaging and suspenseful. Although thi...more
Monique
Another good novel by Susanna Kearsley, but certainly not one of her best. If you've already read Marianna, The Winter Sea and The Shadowy Horses, you might be a bit disappointed in this one. It's much shorter than most of her other novels, so it's not as in-depth and I found I didn't get to know the characters as well as with her other novels, and consequently didn't form any attachment to them.

This one is set in Wales and the history of the Pembrokeshire region is well documented. I would hav...more
LJ
Named of the Dragon - Ok
Kearsley, Susanna
The invitation to spend Christmas in Angle, on the Pembrokeshire coast, is one that Lyn Ravenshaw is only too happy to accept. To escape London and the pressures of her literary agency is temptation enough, but the prospect of meeting Booker Prize nominee James Swift - conveniently in search of an agent - is the deciding factor. On holiday she encounters the disturbing Elen Vaughan, recently widowed and with an eight-month-old son whose paternity is a sub...more
Sue
This has been calling to me from my shelf since I picked up at a thrift store last January and I finally asked myself what I'm saving it for and read it. I didn't realize it took place at Christmas so that was a fortuitous circumstance. This story of a literary agent who lost a baby and goes with one of her clients to Wales for the holiday is all atmosphere and Arthurian legend. Welsh history and legend, like Owen Glendower's rebellion, all seem to come back to Arthur and Merlin as the agent, Ly...more
Emily
Susanna Kearsley is one of my new favorite authors. I love spending a few hours in her novels. She is very descriptive, and I love her characters. Her books remind me of the really good Mary Stewart gothic romances that I grew up reading (and many of which I still enjoy). This was one of my favorites by this author.
Erin
I love to curl up with a book by Susanna Kearsley and "Named of the Dragon" was no exception. I liked that Kearsley created a suspenseful historical in Wales instead of the literary fall backs of Ireland and Scotland( although I do love those too!). I enjoyed the contemporary characters and the Arthurian legend backdrop which culminates in a great series of events that kept me turning the pages.
Jessica
Another solid novel from Susanna Kearsley. While I still prefer her timeslip stories, this was a very enjoyable read with just a hint of historical elements thrown in. Not my favorite of her's but I highly recommend it if you're a fan of Shadowy Horses or Splendour Falls.
Robin
I have read so many of Susanna Kearley's books. I am, it goes without saying, a huge fan. I was, however, fortunate to have read Mariana first which is a superb book. So gradually inbetween other reading tangents, I have been trying to catch up on some of her older books.

It is true that this one is not as wonderful as Mariana and The Shadowy Horses. However, it did have my imagination fleeing down corridors filled with the Merlin Prophecies, Henry Tudor and a beautiful and sometimes mysterious...more
Amy
Anything by S. Kearsley is great, but this one is especially good.
Its mysterious, thought provoking, historical and has a touch of romance.
Book Worm
Intriguing ... Another fabulous tale vividly spun but didn't arouse my imagination like Mariana. Wonder why so many characters were thrown in?
Debra
Another intriguing early gothic from Susanna Kearsley. In what I have come to expect from her, atmosphere and setting are strong points, in this case the Pembrokeshire coast. Nicely paced. Intriguing characters, at least some of them. Others were stock. I would like to see more of the protagonists (little chance) down the road.

What didn't work for me was the mythological/historical elements. They seemed just silly and unbelievable. Usually the history is the hook that draws me into Kearsley's wr...more
Mieke
This falls somewhere on the middle of the spectrum for me, not quite as good as some of her books that focus on past lives and the such but I enjoyed it much more than The Splendour Falls, for instance.

Like many of her books, the end is rather anticlimactic, but I'm happy to report that I did not figure out the "whodunnit" so that was a pleasant surprise.

The setting is wonderful, one I very much enjoyed (Wales, Pembrokeshire to be specific) and I did appreciate the references to Merlin and felt...more
Dilys
A charming easy to read novel but not one of her best books, this is written in the same vein as previous books & is worth a read.
Pam
I thoroughly enjoyed the setting of this book, but not so the storyline. A light holiday read.
Kerry
Bah. Just lost all my comments. Will see if I can rewrite them later.

In short, loved the main character, but wish we'd seen a bit more of the romantic interest. All the same, the relationship worked since by the end it was something they were going to work on, rather than established.

I felt the end fell apart a bit, partly because the paranormal part of the plot seemed to become irrelevant except for a quick comment about what one character might (or might not) do in the future.

But I'm left with...more
Maggie
Eh, this was the first Kearsley book that didn't make me cry.

All in all, it was okay. Not so much of the stakes or the adventure in this book, and pretty much all of the characters, save the protagonist, have very unlikeable traits.

An altogether passable read, but I definitely do recommend her other books!
Pam
More subtle than some of her books. I love her settings, this one especially.
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486812
Aka Emma Cole.

Susanna Kearsley studied politics and international development at university, and has worked as a museum curator.

Her first novel Mariana won the prestigious Catherine Cookson Literary Prize and launched her writing career. Susanna continued her mix of the historical and paranormal in novels The Splendour Falls, Named of the Dragon, Shadowy Horses and Season of Storms.

Susanna Kearsle...more
More about Susanna Kearsley...
The Winter Sea (Slains, #1) The Rose Garden Mariana The Shadowy Horses The Firebird (Slains, #2)

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