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Dragon
 
by
Steven Brust
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Dragon (Vlad Taltos #8)

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4.16  ·  Rating details ·  5,282 Ratings  ·  87 Reviews

In which Vlad Taltos finds himself, much to his surprise, at the fateful Battle of Baritt's Tomb

Marching through mud just isn't as much fun as they say.

After years of surviving in Adrilankha by practicing the trade I know bestkilling people for a livingsuddenly I'm in the last place any self-respecting assassin wants to be: the army. Worse, I'm right in the middle of a a

...more
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published November 1st 1999 by Turtleback Books (first published November 1st 1998)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Brad
I've always more or less loved this fantasy series and I'm finally getting back to it, and even though all the novels are good, the last few weren't quite as great as the young Vlad I'd grown to love.

That's why this one is such a treat. We've got a young kid in his prime doing stupid things for powers he only vaguely understands. Just because these powers happen to later become his closest friends doesn't diminish the sheer foolhardiness of his actions, though. :)

Vlad Goes To War. Hilarity ensue
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Melissa McShane
I'm giving this one five stars on re-reading, as an audiobook, in internal chronological order, simply because Brust is at the top of his game with the craft of this one. As with Taltos, it's really not a good idea to read this out of publication order if you're new to the series, because so much of what happens is layered in with the intent of winking at the reader who's read the other books.

Dragon takes place in three parts, two of which are woven together so beautifully it's like a master cla
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Matt Simmons
Probably the weakest of the Taltos books on its own--the plot is neither straightforward swashbuckling fun nor heady, convoluted mystery and intrigue, and in trying to write about war, Brust swings and misses on his normal ability of balancing entertaining story-telling with thoughtful meditation on "big themes of human life"--yet perhaps the first one that stands as an essential to the series as a whole. The doubled storylines point us both back and forth in time, and ensure that we as readers ...more
Ties
Jul 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Continues to be fun, happy the story connects with the other main characters again.
Samantha
Dec 03, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The author's note about this series is that the books can be read in any order and are basically standalones. However, I'm thirty-three pages in and I have no interest in reading any further because I feel like I've missed a ton of info. Maybe this series has a high learning curve and this book is just like all of the rest, but I feel like I should understand more about the world and the characters than I do thirty pages in.

The idea behind the book is really interesting, and I wanted to see just
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Kat  Hooper
Dragon is the eighth novel in Steven Brust’s VLAD TALTOS series. As you’re reading the series, it probably doesn’t matter when you read Dragon since it’s really a stand-alone story which tells of a battle that occurred earlier in the series’ chronology, just after the events of Taltos, which was a prequel to the first three VLAD TALTOS novels. (As you can see, the books jump around in time). But Dragon is not one of the better volumes, so I wouldn’t recommend, say, reading it first and basing yo ...more
Daphne
Feb 26, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own-audio, quest, uno2016
I do so wish I had read this one earlier. It was strange jumping back in time so much. I almost wrote the book up half way through as a wash because I wasn't able to get into based on the time jump, but then I really started digging seeing war through Vlad's eyes. It was quite funny and a unique perspective.
Kati
Dec 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Every Vlad Taltos book that has Morrolan in it but very little to no Cawti gets at least 4 stars from me. This one was downright hilarious in places, though nothing is more funny - and interesting - than Vlad's very odd relationship with Morrolan. Also, the introduction of Daymar was a hoot!
Rachel (Kalanadi)
3.5 stars
Chy
Jan 16, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
"I made scatological culinary recommendations."

Just could be my favorite line in all the books. And every time I say so, who-so-ever hears, gives me a look of some variant of contempt, or some variant of confusion.

The most irritating thing about this book for me, sadly, is that the animal, "jhereg" keeps being capitalized. And from here on out (I think), there are instances where the animals that are also houses sometimes get capitalized. That's distressing because, up until here, it was easy to
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Nathan
Jun 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really admire the way Brust uses the time-line of Vlad's world. While this book is chronologically earlier than some of the others, it fills in some of the "But that's another story" moments from earlier in the series.

In the book Vlad is more noticeably talking to the strange box than in some of the other stories, and his narration is great. The chapters all start shortly before the climax of the story and seamlessly go back to the events leading to the decisive battle. The effect, at least f
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Tom Whalley
Sep 05, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's been a while. It was nice to get back into this series.

Dragon, by Steven Brust, is (as always) an exploration as to what makes up the house the book is titled after. Dragons, in the Taltos series, are military minded, follow their own honor codes, and believe nothing is better than obeying orders. They're essentially Klingons, but without the anger issues. In this book, Vlad winds up fighting inside a squadron of Morollan's army, against an incredibly dangerous wizard, in a battle he has no
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John
Sep 30, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dragon is the 8th novel in the Vlad Taltos series. Oddly, just as Brust has really gotten going with the latter-day Vlad storyline, he shunts us back into Vlad's past in Dragon. If this is a step backward for the series, it's only a half-step. Really, seen in the scope of the larger series, it becoms clear that Dragon is also helping to set up the action of the novels to follow. We continue to see new facets of the characters and the plot elements that have been involved in the series, deepening ...more
Aelvana
Vlad Taltos is a fairly good assassin, but he has friends who want favors, and that's how he finds himself enlisted in Morrolan's army. Fighting a war. Which, ironically for an assassin, is not the way he wants to go about killing people. But he's stuck in it now, so all he can do is try to survive, and hope Morrolan's side wins.

I didn't like this one as much as the others I've read. It's set between Taltos (#4) and Yendi (#2), and spells out what actually happened during the battle Vlad offhand
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Mary-Beth
Jun 11, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, fiction
So, Vlad Taltos is an assassin in a very hierarchized society. He's obviously part of the bottom rung until he becomes part of the criminal house Jhereg, which raises him up one rung, but also exposes him to a lot of danger.

The attraction of the novels is his snarky comments to his little familiar Loiosh, who is a Jhereg (little dragony thingie, but NOT a dragon which are actually elvin people and the highest in the hierarchy). It's really unecessarily confusing, which is what can be said of the
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C is for **censored**
The star rating given reflects my opinion within ‘the official goodreads rating system’. (Notice the two important words... OPINION and RATING)

1 star: Didn’t Like it
2 stars: It’s Okay
3 stars: Liked it
4 stars: Really Liked it
5 stars: It Was Amazing

I don’t really give a rat-fuck that there are some who think I ‘owe’ an explanation for my opinion. Nope, nada, and not sorry about it.

Sometimes I may add notes to explain what my opinions are based on, and sometimes I don’t. I do this for me, on my boo
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Jen
Mar 28, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was not as big a fan of the whole war description thing. Just wasn't my cup of tea.

My reading notes follow:

@ 2.5% // Vladimir is wearing Jhereg colors. Another flashback novel? Seems to be placed three years after Deathgate falls, so that would make this novel fit where in the chronological time line?

@ 5.4% // I forgot about the paths of the dead! No wonder Barrit didn't like Vladimir in the story a few books ago.

@ 35.8 // I am pretty sure that we already covered the true nature of Spellbreak
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Jenn
Jul 09, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I didn't particularly care for the last two in this series. Which is bad since I enjoyed them very much up until that point. But I had bought the last two, along with Dragon and Isola in the omnibus editions, so I had it lying around. It's near the end of the series, so I feel like I've got to finish it. So, I gave Dragon a shot.

Guys. I kept looking ahead to mark the end of the chapter to kind of urge myself on. The constant change of time period confused the hell out of me. I don't really like
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Fantasy Literature
Dragon is the eighth novel in Steven Brust’s VLAD TALTOS series. As you’re reading the series, it probably doesn’t matter when you read Dragon since it’s really a stand-alone story which tells of a battle that occurred earlier in the series’ chronology, just after the events of Taltos, which was a prequel to the first three VLAD TALTOS novels. (As you can see, the books jump around in time). But Dragon is not one of the better volumes, so I wouldn’t recommend, say, reading it first and basing yo ...more
Charlotte Blankenburg
I enjoyed this book, especially the unfolding of the back story as it converged with current events. We read the main story first, then Yendi, then back to the two Interludes and Epilogue of the book so we kept the chronological order of the events of the series.

The book covers a battle between two members of the House of Dragon, with Vlad enlisting as a soldier. We get to see his personality develop more and, I think, because this book was set in the time period between events in the Book of Ta
...more
Becky
Feb 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this one very confusing, more so because I was listening and not reading. It was an interesting interlude, but didn't add much to the overall story. At least, if it did, I missed it.
Paul
Brust uses his "back and forth" style of writing past the point of irritation in this novel. Each chapter starts out with a progessive step in the novel's culminating moment, but then something will remind Vlad of a step leading to the moment, and we're taken back in time to that moment, and then even within that moment we might go off in another tangent. It feels like the book was written off the cuff, with an idea for structure, but no real command of it. The style does keep the pages turning, ...more
Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides
Another one that seemed to be just okay. But good to get this bit of backstory, I suppose.

Feb 2012: Just re-read this. I think I've put my finger on why this seemed problematic. We're expected to believe that Vlad adjusts relatively easily to being a foot soldier, when in his normal life he's a shot-calling crime boss. The story is told in a non-linear way, so it's a little harder to wrap your brain around the transition. It was for me, anyway. I think right now I'm in a frame of mind where I'd
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Heather
Jul 06, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I pretty much guessed the plot of the story from the very beginning, but that doesn't mean it wasn't any less well executed. The story is simultaneously told from three different points in time, but it wasn't hard to follow. The only confusion in reading came during Vlad's confusion in battle, which I think is intended, and the confusion always seemed to clear once the action settled down -- unless my husband got involved in trying to help me understand something that I felt I missed and told me ...more
Lynn
Mar 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Definitely a return to form for Brust, and helped get the still not-quite-right feel of the previous two books out of my head.

Sometimes I think Brust is trying to confuse his readers by trying new story writing techniques, and DRAGON is no exception. It jumps back and forth, confusing me for the first couple of chapters, but then it smooths out and I could follow it fairly well. Although I need a reference guide to look up all the hints of things I've forgotten from previous novels.

You don't hav
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Jamie Collins
Dec 28, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
3.5 stars, one of my favorites of this series: Vlad joins the army. Lots of action, lots of funny moments, not much angst. Some philosophy: Vlad is repelled by warfare, with its great loss of life, while the Dragonlords are appalled by the dishonor of assassination.

I like the way Brust plays with the structure of his books. In this one, each chapter begins with Vlad briefly describing his current circumstance (in the midst of a battle) before backing up to gradually tell the story of how he ende
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Roger N.
A more complicated framing story than most and plenty of distractions left me feeling like I missed some stuff, but various articles about the book online say that I didn't. The second of the "here's how I got involved with all these folks" stories. Not my favorite entry, and not just because it does nothing to address the double-what?! from the end of Orca.

This is the last one I read back in the day, so now I'm going to start on the ones I haven't read: Issola, Dzur, Jhegala, Iorich, Tiassa.
Susan
Mar 26, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: genre-sff
This is a jump back to a very early place in the timeline. Craftwise, I think it's a very polished book. Vlad's especially well drawn. But it's basically a long digression into Vlad's hard-to-justify experience marching with a Dragon army in a person dispute between two Dragonlords. It has some of the feel of an account of a foot soldier in the Civil War. Vlad's take on army life is interesting, but even so the book starts to feel long and repetitive. Conflicted emotions about warfare just don't ...more
***Dave Hill
Dec 31, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: text
It's flashback time, as Vlad gets dragooned by Morollan and Sethra into fighting in a war as a grunt. Plenty of goodness here, both in structure (bouncing back and forth in time perspective) and in character background (filling in some previously referenced Vlad backstory, as well as teaching us a lot more about Dragaera and, of course, Dragons). It's not the best of tales, often downbeat (as war will get), but it's generally entertaining and a great illustration of why a why a good thief (or as ...more
B
Sep 27, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I did like this turn of Vlad's in the military life, and appreciated how the plot was patchy like his memories; but honestly, the structure is getting kind of old, Vlad. I feel that maybe seventeen chapters of this structure is too many; if the book were fewer chapters (crazy, right? everything comes in seventeens) it would work better for me.

As for the supporting cast, Loiosh is good in this book; Morrolan, Aliera, and Sethra are kind of weird and distant (as to be expected); and I hope to see
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Dragaera: Dragon 1 2 Oct 12, 2012 01:38AM  
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Steven Karl Zoltán Brust (born November 23, 1955) is an American fantasy and science fiction author of Hungarian descent. He was a member of the writers' group The Scribblies, which included Emma Bull, Pamela Dean, Will Shetterly, Nate Bucklin, Kara Dalkey, and Patricia Wrede, and also belongs to the Pre-Joycean Fellowship.

http://us.macmillan.com/author/steven...

(Photo by David Dyer-Bennet)
More about Steven Brust...

Other Books in the Series

Vlad Taltos (1 - 10 of 15 books)
  • Jhereg (Vlad Taltos, #1)
  • Yendi (Vlad Taltos, #2)
  • Teckla (Vlad Taltos, #3)
  • Taltos (Vlad Taltos, #4)
  • Phoenix (Vlad Taltos, #5)
  • Athyra (Vlad Taltos, #6)
  • Orca (Vlad Taltos, #7)
  • Issola (Vlad Taltos, #9)
  • Dzur (Vlad Taltos, #10)
  • Jhegaala (Vlad Taltos, #11)

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“You may borrow them, if
you wish," so I could avoid letting him startle me.
"I'd like that very much."
"I should warn you, however, that I have several volumes devoted to curses for
people who don't return books."
"I'd like to borrow those, too.”
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“Grand," I said. "Just grand. I get myself into the army, stand up in battles I have no business in, get nailed in the back by sorcery, accept an impossible assignment to be carried out in the middle of it all, and then, just to top things off, I have to go have a mystical fucking experience. This is just great.” 7 likes
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