Margaret's Reviews > Dragonsbane

Dragonsbane by Barbara Hambly
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's review
Apr 26, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: fantasy-and-science-fiction, authors-gh
Read in July, 2006 , read count: 2

Lord John Aversin is known as "Dragonsbane", for the dragon he killed long ago; when another dragon threatens the kingdom, Lord Gareth goes north to the Winterlands to find John and ask him for help. When Gareth and John go south, they are accompanied by the witch Jenny Waynest, John's lover and mother of his two sons, who has long been torn between her desire for more magical power and her love for John. Their encounter with the dragon, Morkeleb the Black, is only the start of the challenges they will face, from a sorceress who wants to take over the kingdom, to Jenny's increasing conflict between her magic and her family. Dragonsbane is a quietly thoughtful, bittersweet novel about choice and sacrifice. And it has a really interesting dragon, too.

I have read the sequels, and I rather wish I hadn't. The melancholy mood becomes grim, when the lives of John and Jenny are disrupted, horribly, by demons. The demons are extra nasty, and the characters go through painful travails, and it all seems rather unnecessary. I was just barely interested enough to finish the trilogy, but definitely not to reread them. The ending of Dragonsbane was poignant and right, and I wish Hambly had left it there.
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