Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “King's Dragon (Crown of Stars, #1)” as Want to Read:
King's Dragon (Crown of Stars, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

King's Dragon (Crown of Stars #1)

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  7,616 Ratings  ·  227 Reviews
Though King Henry holds the crown of Wendar, his reign has long been contested by his elder half-sister Sabella, who is making her second attempt to take the throne. There are many eager to flock to her banner, and Sabella has ways to bring others to her cause. Aside from this internal strife, Wendar also faces raids from the north by an inhuman race, the Eika, who seem ne ...more
Paperback, 544 pages
Published February 1st 1997 by DAW Hardcover
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about King's Dragon, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Morgan I don't know how to answer this except to say I ordered all 7 books (hardcover!) on They sell hardcovers for less than four dollars…moreI don't know how to answer this except to say I ordered all 7 books (hardcover!) on They sell hardcovers for less than four dollars each, which means you can get the whole series from them for dirt cheap. I recommend!!!! (Sorry for sounding like an ad.)(less)
Amber Dunten I read it some years ago, so I don't recall for certain on the language, but I don't think so. However, there is a section where the heroine Liath…moreI read it some years ago, so I don't recall for certain on the language, but I don't think so. However, there is a section where the heroine Liath gets caught in an extremely abusive relationship and is nearly killed before she escapes. The sex is not graphic and I'd be more concerned about the violence. But I'd say if a reader is mature enough to handle it at a reading comprehension level, the reader is mature enough to deal with the issues presented.(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
Jan 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of history and epic fantasy
Shelves: favorites
I'm usually much too lazy to give reviews, but I felt obliged to write one for this series because I believe Elliott's writing is somewhat under-appreciated. Among the plethora of epic fantasy series that came out over the last 30 years, the Crown of Stars is relatively unknown, so I wanted to make it easier for people to decide whether to start on this 7-book series or not with no spoilers attached.

Language style: I guess it's comparable to George RR Martin's ASOIAF, not as intricate as that o
I really loved this book. It was one of those rare ones that I took my time to savor without thinking about what I was going to be reading next. As with many books that I've loved, it's hard to explain why. I really just love Kate Elliott's writing. Her world is so vivid and real, with a deep sense of history and of hidden things that will be revealed. At the same time, she also makes me care about and fear for the characters so effortlessly, and because of the characters, the world feels very i ...more
Emma Deplores Goodreads Censorship
I plan to write a fuller review after reading more of the series, but really enjoyed this. As a kid I read the first couple of books in this series, and now I suspect the reason I didn’t finish is that Elliott’s adult novels are geared toward adult tastes and interests, more so than most popular fantasy, which tends to be heavy on the adolescent wish-fulfillment, action/adventure and romance. Not to say that there aren’t elements of that here, but this probably isn’t the fantasy to buy for your ...more
Dec 27, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Finished this in a day! The whole series of The Crown of Starts was a gift from my boyfriend, and I was eager to start in on this. There is so much going on already in this book. It seems a typical fantasy at first, lost elvish nations, scary lizard-ish bad guys, a brother and sister fighting for the thrown, and a couple of kids caught up in the middle. Mostly, I'm intrigued by the religion Elliot creates in it. Clearly, there is a lot of traditional, Medieval basis in it. Fathers and "biscops" ...more
Apr 19, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008, fantasy
I had a really, really hard time getting into this book. I probably would have neither started nor finished it if it weren't a book of the month for a reading group I belong to. I just hate getting into multi-volume (7) epic fantasies. This one took about 200 pages (out of 600+) to get interesting. I was never able to pinpoint quite why it was so hard to get into. For the record, I'm going to list some positives and negatives of this book.

On the positive side:

1. There aren't too many central cha
Kat  Hooper
The Crown of Stars series is well-thought out and obviously well-planned. It's epic in scope and it's got a lot of texture. There are many complex characters who we follow in parallel, as in Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time. Some of them are very likable, and there are some really excellent villains (e.g., Hugh). Ms. Elliott's creatures are imaginative and enjoyable, and I especially liked the way they interact with the humans. Ms. Elliott uses a lot of description and therefore her plot moves very ...more
Aug 10, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
No spoilers here.
After reading this first book of a seven book series, I must say that I wonder why it doesn't come up on more lists of finished fantasy series, perhaps for the lack of readers. Thinking it may be the covers, which do not work at all compared to the story itself. This story takes place in a medieval setting where magic looms about, and has a gritty feeling to it. The book is written in two points of view, and later on third point of view is inserted.
You do have the typical youn
May 31, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: epic-fantasy, war
For what started out as a fairly standard entrence into an epic fantasy series, I was quickly surprised.

Elliott spends a lot of time world building and the result is impressive. This book is thick with history, politics and religion which has been a negative to several reviewers I have read online. In my opinion, I enjoyed reading the history, politics and the religion because it made the world so much more vivid and set the foundation for an incredibly complex, realistic series. It really help
Jul 16, 2007 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
I want to read this because of what Orson Scott Card said about it:

"Kate Elliott joins my very small pantheon of great living fantasy writers.

"[She is] one of the best world creators in fantasy literature.

"[The readers] are so fully immersed in this world, and its details are created so convincingly and richly, that it's a pleasure to simply live there with these characters.

"[It has] the most wonderfully frustrating villain you have ever experienced in literature. If Dickens had read these books
Blodeuedd Finland
Sep 01, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
written a month ago). I do not even know where to begin. I was so booored, but read on, skimmed, and read on. I came to the conclusion that "swears some" I will read this book. I got it, I will read it, not put it back on that darn TBR pile. So I read it, half way through I read reviews for book 7 so I could see what would happen.

It was the characters, I should have felt for Liath's plight. But I just did not. She felt whiny. I should have liked Alain but he was a wooden figure. The Eika prince
Dec 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Kate Elliott's "Crown of Stars" series -- 5,200 pages or so, through seven volumes -- sure is a monster, but it's worth the undertaking. Really, I'd call this one of the most underrated fantasy series ever. Don't be deceived by the generally weak cover art for all these volumes. Elliott's writing, too, is more than it seems at first glance. She writes very, very well. It's sneaks-up-on-you prose, but after you read quite a bit you realize she's very talented.

I won't even begin to try to provide
Nov 30, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned, 2015
Goodreads keeps crashing on me, this is my 89678 attempt to post this review, but here we go again.

This, I think, is the only Kate Elliott series that has been translated into Polish (I might be wrong about some of her early sf, but her later - and to me, the most interesting - novels are sadly unavailable). In fact, I distinctly remember seeing them in bookshops, and on occasion, in a private fee-for-book library, and thinking - this looks just like what I'm not into, fantasy-wise. There were k
May 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Leading up to our wedding, Bethany and I both blazed through Kate Elliott's Crown of Stars series as fast as we could We both adored it. At long last, after five years, I'm returning to it. Prior to this, neither of us had been voracious readers of speculative fiction. So, my reread is for two purposes: 1. Refresh the great characters in my mind; and 2. See if it holds up. The first volume definitely did. King's Dragon shifts the narrative perspective frequently, relying on the observations of a ...more
Lasairfiona Smith
May 15, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: iown
It's okay. This is your basic sprawling fantasy story that happens to be set in a world where there is some war and some invasion but without the single hero that kills everything and wins the lady. No, things are a tad more complicated than that. However, this story does fall to some of the most obnoxious clichés found in fantasy - specifically the love at first site between people that shouldn't have anything to do with each other. Oh, and the death of a family member causes heroine to be sold ...more
Ashley *Hufflepuff Kitten*
I saw Kate talking about this series on Twitter and had to add it to my TBR, it sounds fascinating.
I wonder if I'll like this book better when if I read the others. Because there are a lot of lose ends left untied.

There is a story A and a story B, and at times a little A.1 and B.1 as minor characters go off and have noteworthy adventures without the main characters. I expected Story A & B would ultimately converge and am left wondering if they will?

At the beginning of the book, it tended towards a bit of melodramatic use of metaphors, but further into the book it settles down into an easi
Sora Zee
Sep 09, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition


...and of course to any one who would care to read this lmao

This book was recommended by my wife two years ago. According to her, it is one of the best series she ever read. I read the gist of it, put it in my to-read-list, and then forgot about it. It took me two years to finally give the book a chance. It was nominated for the Nebula Award, and being an avid book reader, that simple advertisement alone made me have high hopes
Oct 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I should probably finish other Epic fantasy series I'm reading before starting another, but at least this one actually does have an ending already published, so some hope!

The King's Dragon follows several characters; A young man who has grown up knowing he is promised to the Church but yearns for other things, a young woman who has followed her magician father all over the world, always one step ahead of some mysterious thing chasing them, a deacon whose has devoted her life to writing a history
Oct 15, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: grown-up, orbit, daw
The inexorable tide of worldbuilding moving plot, theological and political schisms, a fantasy world with players honestly balanced among genders, and a fantasy based on medieval europe that actually feels like medieval europe? YES PLEASE I WILL TAKE SEVEN.
Apr 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5. Slow start; enjoyable but predictable read. I will most likely continue with the series.
Feb 14, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I think before I get into my review of this book I should disclose something. King's Dragon is the first volume of a seven volume series. I read up to page 572 of book five (the Gathering Storm) and found I just couldn't continue. I was fed up with the story, the characters, the whole thing. If the book didn't weigh a ton, I'd probably have thrown it against the wall in frustration. As is, I refrained for free of denting the walls of my rental. In this review, I'm going to talk about the overall ...more
Oct 02, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Ages ago, I started reading Kate Elliot's Crown of Stars series, but lost track of just which book I had gotten up to, and so kept putting the rest of the series off. I've just started rereading the books to remind myself of what happened.

The general setup of the world is based on actual early medieval history, say around AD 900. The kingdoms of Wendar and Varre (where the bulk of the series takes place) obviously occupy what would be Germany, the Eika (savage non-humans with tough metallic-look
Jan 16, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was so disappointed in these books, because they could have been so good. The plots were fascinating and multi-layered, the characters were complex, I was truly invested in the outcome of a number of different plot threads -- but I couldn't make it through the series. One of the reasons I like YA fantasy a lot is that the authors pare down the unnecessary parts. Not so in this series. I just couldn't handle the pages-long summaries of the history of the country, or of their religion, or lineag ...more
To tell the truth, I found this book to be quite tedious for the most part. There were so many details and extra storylines that in my opinion could be left out, or at least shortened considerably.

The book began really slowly for me, and I was not super interested in the characters – definitely not in Alain's POV at first. However, it did pick up quite fast from there - I found Liath's portions with Hugh to be harrowing but engrossing and I enjoyed them.

Then, around the 300-page mark, I'd say,
Jul 07, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Reading this book was an incredibly sobering experience for me. I questioned who I am as a reader: am I someone who has left fantasy novels behind her? I used to consume fantasy novels voraciously; nonstop, and in copious amounts. Many I did not like, but I was lucky more often than not and tended to stumble upon spectacular fantasy series often enough to satisfy my appetite (I was always the one recommending the fantasy books to my friends, but rarely did anyone recommend a fantasy series to me ...more
Jun 23, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A pretty standard, kingdom in turmoil, invaders from the north, treachery from a sibling, mysterious waif loses guardian to nefarious forces, adopted bastard chosen by fate to be protector of the kingdom type of book. The execution however, is pretty good. The waif suffers true trauma. The kind of thing that can damage a person for a long time. And it's not how her guardian dies, but what happens after.

The religion is very catholic-like, with saints and priests, though a more gender-neutral(or
Overall, I really enjoyed the storyline and promptly began to read the 2nd one in the series as soon as I finished. Bit wordy at times but not overly so.

Sensitive readers: (view spoiler)
Sep 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read these a while ago and was one of best sets I read so far, so anticipating all the way through all 7 books omg such good set I wished they never end, one of those where you finish and think "NOW WHAT?! :("
Aug 03, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This is really engaging high fantasy. Lots of characterization and world building from the very start. No infodumps. Just good, solid fantasy, complete with doomed loves and huge batttles.
Will not write a reeview because the ending was so lousy that I have no mood to even think about the series.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Broken Crown (The Sun Sword, #1)
  • Rules of Ascension (Winds of the Forelands, #1)
  • Wolfblade (Hythrun Chronicles: Wolfblade, #1)
  • The Ruins of Ambrai (Exiles, #1)
  • The Sword (The Sword, the Ring, and the Chalice, #1)
  • The Thief's Gamble (The Tales of Einarinn #1)
  • Flesh and Fire (Vineart War #1)
  • Grand Conspiracy (Wars of Light & Shadow #5; Arc 3 - Alliance of Light, #2)
  • Tower of the King's Daughter (Outremer, #1)
  • The Gold Falcon (The Silver Wyrm, #1; The Dragon Mage, #4)
  • Deserted Cities of the Heart
  • The Briar King (Kingdoms of Thorn and Bone, #1)
  • Fortress Draconis (The DragonCrown War Cycle, #1)
  • Fortress in the Eye of Time (Fortress, #1)
As a child in rural Oregon, Kate Elliott made up stories because she longed to escape to a world of lurid adventure fiction. She now writes fantasy, steampunk, and science fiction, often with a romantic edge. It should therefore come as no surprise that she met her future husband in a sword fight.

When he gave up police work to study archaeology, they and their three children fell into an entirely
More about Kate Elliott...

Other Books in the Series

Crown of Stars (7 books)
  • Prince of Dogs (Crown of Stars, #2)
  • The Burning Stone (Crown of Stars, #3)
  • Child of Flame (Crown of Stars, #4)
  • The Gathering Storm (Crown of Stars, #5)
  • In the Ruins (Crown of Stars, #6)
  • Crown of Stars (Crown of Stars, #7)