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Blood of Tyrants

(Temeraire #8)

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  9,966 ratings  ·  856 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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George Was for me. Laurence on his own was interesting and different.

And if this is the penultimate novel, I'm definitely reading the last of the series!…more
Was for me. Laurence on his own was interesting and different.

And if this is the penultimate novel, I'm definitely reading the last of the series!(less)
***Dave Hill Honestly, the 8th out of a 9 book series is probably not the best place to start. There is enough reference back to previous events and characters as …moreHonestly, the 8th out of a 9 book series is probably not the best place to start. There is enough reference back to previous events and characters as to make it seem likely to be a less-than-satisfying experience. I'd wait until you can start from the beginning.(less)

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Average rating 3.97  · 
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Dec 28, 2012 rated it liked it
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
Pretty standard rating from me (for this series).
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
Jan 01, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
Not the best in the series, but not bad. This book is broken into three parts. Because they could each be stand-alone books, I rate and review each part separately.

2 Stars for Part One, JAPAN: Laurence washed ashore about 60 miles from the only internationally accessible port -- Nagasaki -- after he got swept overboard, hitting his head, and losing his memory. The authorities are hunting him. A Japanese youth named Junichiro plays a role. Meanwhile, Temeraire frets and Iskierka lays their preci
Aug 16, 2013 rated it liked it
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
Ashley Marie
This one felt rather anticlimactic the whole way through - I don't understand the reasoning behind Laurence's memory loss, as far the plot was concerned, because it only seemed to hinder everything. Bring on the Final Installment!
Apr 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
'We did not get ourselves into trouble at all. .. It came to us without any effort on our parts.'

And that is exactly what happens in this book. Trouble keeps on coming for Temeraire, Laurence and their friends. One after another tight squeezes and bad luck.

Even though I wish the amnesia angle had been written a little differently I still enjoyed this story A LOT. And that is because of the dragons. This book is all about the dragons. Their bond with their riders and their interactions with e
Kaethe Douglas
Jan 31, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: china, beloved, dragons
2014 October 12

I loved it so much that I haven't really been interested in anything else since I finished it. So much, that I'm only happy reading the series over from the start. Dragons in 1812 Japan, China, and Russia! Dragons! I say!

Library copy
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.
May 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book was absolutely amazing! Started the series a long time ago and for whatever reason stopped. But, I am so glad to be back. Basically, Laurence went overboard, ended up on the shores of Japan, and literally forgot everything about Temeraire and the corps. There were so many adorable and funny moments between Laurence and Temeraire as they try to figure out their relationship now that he doesn't remember him and their many adventures. Luckily, through everything, Laurence absolutely loves ...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
Rk Stark
Aug 20, 2013 rated it it was ok
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
Aug 22, 2013 rated it liked it
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.

Aug 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
It's kind of sad that there's just one book ahead of me.

So. Amnesia thrope. Something I love dearly when it's done good. The contrast between being the person you remember to be and the life you don't remember. It's like time stopped just for you, but not for the rest of the world. And it works well with Laurence, who rememebers himself as this upright navy guy, while in the last book he was finally out of the fucks to give. The way he doesn't even know if he should be thinking about Temeraire
It's been a real delight tearing through this series and growing to love it more with every book. The few misgivings I had with the first couple of books have fully dispersed by now, and I just love that feeling of being able to trust that an author knows what she's doing and that whatever calamity she next decides to throw her characters into, I will happily follow them across the world (and back again, and around, and then diagonally upwards, maybe), alternately whooping with joy, gnawing my f ...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
Kitvaria Sarene
This was one of the better ones of the series!
Something actually completely unexpected happens and shakes up the trodden path a bit! We get to see even more new cultures, and it feels a bit deeper again than just flying all over Australia...
I can't believe it was the second to last, I miss them all already, even though I still have book 9 left...
First 67% was one star. Then the very 67% was eleven stars and the rest came back to usual 4 stars. A more elaborate review will follow.
Nov 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Really liked this one and tbh was enjoying the memory loss plot and felt like it resolved itself almost too swiftly for my liking. But then I did also enjoy the Russian campaign side and the bit with the ferals being released from the breeding grounds at the end was really horrifying and compelling.
Timothy Boyd
Oct 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
The series is one book away from the end and it is still a very well done alternate history story. Great and humorous characters, nice action throughout the story also. If you are looking for a new Fantasy series to try then grab this up. Very recommended
Jul 30, 2013 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Melissa McShane
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
Aug 16, 2013 rated it liked it
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
Jan 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2013, fantasy, netgalley
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
Oct 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I have issues when I get to the end of series, especially ones as good as Temeraire.

For some reason I didn't much like the first book until I reread it, and then it and the rest of this series have become probably my favourite set of dragon books. So, as I close the final page of this book, I can't help but feel a familiar gloom well up within me; I can already hear the thousand reasons I'm going to put off League of Dragons, so that I don't have to finish the series. So that it never ends.

Of co
Oct 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
"Winter had come."

So ends the last published story of Temeraire and Will Laurence until next year.

This book started with the most unexpected opening and flew on for one more startling turn after another. I am exhausted from just listening.

The war with France is still being waged and we leave the fighting on Russian soil as snow is falling.

A five star performance by Simon Vance and and more than five stars, if possible, for Naomi Novik and her imagination. What a story. Bravo!

Kara Babcock
I’ve finally figured it out: this is a buddy cop story.

Wait wait wait wait wait—it makes total sense! Think about it. Laurence is the by-the-book, hardnosed detective who has been on the job for years when, one day, out of the blue, this smartass rookie with a talent for learning languages and blowing hot air waltzes into his life. The two become partners and start working cases together, and Temeraire keeps getting Laurence in trouble, but Laurence always has Temeraire’s back—because even if La
Annie (Putt)
Jan 14, 2020 rated it liked it
3.5 stars maybe


That's everything about this book in one word. I'm really fluctuating between a 3 and 3.5 because of one fact: So many things were forgotten in this. I literally forgot whole characters existed because they were ignored for hundreds of pages. Characters who are important to the plot AND actively engaging (or supposed to be) in the story. Part of me definitely feels like this book is super contrived, that the only reason it got dragged out is because of the whole big twist at
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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

Other books in the series

Temeraire (9 books)
  • 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)
  • Tongues of Serpents (Temeraire, #6)
  • Crucible of Gold (Temeraire, #7)
  • League of Dragons (Temeraire, #9)

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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.” 8 likes
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