Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “There Will Be Dragons (The Council Wars, #1)” as Want to Read:
There Will Be Dragons (The Council Wars, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

There Will Be Dragons

(The Council Wars #1)

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  4,748 ratings  ·  167 reviews
In the future, there is no want, no war, no disease nor ill-timed death. The world is a paradise - and then, in a moment, it ends. The council that controls the Net falls out and goes to war. Everywhere people who have never known a moment of want or pain are left wondering how to survive.
Paperback, 746 pages
Published June 18th 2006 by Baen Books (first published 2003)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

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

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.99  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,748 ratings  ·  167 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of There Will Be Dragons (The Council Wars, #1)
Becky Fowler
Aug 02, 2011 rated it did not like it
I really wanted to like this book. Imagine a society with no real hunger, poverty or war where the bottom suddenly drops out and people find themselves in a world for which they have no relevant skills. It sounds fascinating!

Sadly, that is not the book that was delivered. The entire book seems to have been written by a hormonal and socially-awkward teenage boy. The female characters, especially, are one-dimensional and more objects of male sexual desire than anything else. Well, that and as a ve
Aug 10, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebooks
I cannot escape post-apocalyptic sword & sorcery series. I started There Will Be Dragons because it was a free download and I've read a few of Ringo's collaborations (always as the junior partner), so I had no idea what it was before I began reading.

I like the concept: 45th century society abruptly regresses from "We are as gods, and might as well get good at it", but for some silly reason they all regress to vaguely medieval technology -- lots of reenactors and muscle-powered recreational fight
OMIGAWD this is the worst, most disturbing book I've tried to read in years. Maybe decades, and I've barely lived three of those. I loved the idea for the book, and was prepared to even suspend disbelief for the mega stupid things that you just have to accept--like it's supposed to be 2,000 years and more into the future... and people still talk about disco.
What. The. Fuzz.
I tried. I kept my mouth shut. And THEN it went crazy on me. Ringo shows rapes and near rapes of women he carefully mention
Catherine Faber
Feb 14, 2009 rated it did not like it
Oh RETCH! This is terrible. Author never bothered to think through implications of his technology*, nor to research supposed basic "problem" in the real world**. Book is seriously degrading to women and to top it all off, the author flung away his chance at redeeming himself with a satisfying ending in order to have a(nother) pointless battle between two Manly Men.

If you're a jingoistic 15 year old boy, comforted by seeing women abused and degraded, you'll love it. I'm not any of those things, a
Sep 23, 2013 rated it did not like it

It had a good premise! I find post-apocalyptic fantasy to always been a bit interesting.

There are so many problems with the way Mr. Ringo took his story.

1) While there are some people who to be expected, don't very much like the fact that they have to work and expend themselves to survive, I feel it's treated fairly lightly. I find it hard that a mass of people who for many Generations have had no reason to do anything except what they wanted to, to roll over so easily. Yes, there would be so
Jun 19, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kay Dee
Jul 30, 2013 rated it liked it
I have read Ringo's stuff in anthologies so i figured it'd be sc-fi dragons. umm there were no dragons well ok, 1. and we didn't even get to talk with her. so the title is a big fat lie and the cover is also a big fat lie this is not a fantasy's a sci-fi book with medieval tendencies.

I read the other reviews of the book and was very surprised by the claims of this book being hateful towards women.

There are a ton of books where women are not the main characters and are just stereotypes, t
Marc Jentzsch
Jul 20, 2012 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: sci fi fans who are also survivalists
Recommended to Marc by: the cover, rawr
Shelves: fantasy
I really wanted to like this book, but it quickly devolved into a weird soup of survivalist-porn with extremely ham-fisted political overtones and a narrative distaste for women. I don't mind a book with a message, even if it's one I disagree with, but I want it to be an invitation to ponder the subject using the story as case, even in my pulp novels (see Joseph Conrad or Sir ACD).

I'd say that maybe I'm just being overly sensitive, but I got the same vibe from another other book by Ringo that I
Lauren Donley
Mar 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I love this author and find his creations in this series to be a very unique combination of Science Fiction and Fantasy. I was drawn to the characters and constantly wanting to know what will happen next. Bast the elf is my favorite character. I highly disagree with many of the reviews and comments about abuse of women and holes in technological explanations many of which I think are addressed in the next 3 books. I also liked some of the quirky current time language and sayings he adds which I ...more
Nitu Ushi
Sep 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science-fiction
A wonderful romp in a science fiction / fantasy realm.
The entire premise of this book and it's series seems to stem from Clark's third law, "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."
When an incredibly advanced earth is stripped of it's science then all that is left is magic to the survivors. It is this magic that they use to fight a war, to protect their homes and loved ones, and to try to reestablish the paradise lost.
In my humble opinion one of the best science f
May 26, 2020 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Peter Tillman
Jul 23, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fantasy
In Dragons, John Ringo tried to have it both ways: super-hi (nano) tech PLUS SCA swords and plowshares! In the far future, a perfect (but dull and rotten) utopia is abruptly brought down by drooling fascist Dr Eeevil villains. BUT, the Good Guys are fighting back! Some know how to swing a sword, and/or shoot an arrow! AND, a few have God-like Powers! But, so do the Eevil Overlords!

Can the Good Guys beat the Bad Guys? Will the Future Schmuck-Nazis get their comeuppance? Tune in again, for Dragon
Nov 01, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 30, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was surprisingly good. Set in a future complete with nanotechnology and AIs, it still manages to be mostly a fantasy yarn. Usually I consider a fantasy genre story fantasy only if it contains magic, otherwise it's an alternate history. Hence my disappointment with Game of Thrones...I don't like alternate histories. In this book, the place of magic is taken by the science of the future, and it works very well. I can't think of another book that does this.

My only previous contact with th
Nov 16, 2007 rated it it was ok
Shelves: e-text
"In the future there is no want, no war, no disease nor ill-timed death. The world is a paradise — and then, in a moment, it ends. The council that controls the Net falls out and goes to war. Everywhere people who have never known a moment of want or pain are left wondering how to survive. "

Historical re-enactors and Society of Creative Anachronism types are best suited for survival & start to rebuild society.

It's a bit of a slow-starter, as the Fall doesn't happen until about a fifth of the way
Apr 22, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lisa by: Myles B
Shelves: 2008
I actually enjoyed this book much more than I thought I would. The themes are revealed almost immediately and aren't terribly original, so after the introduction I thought perhaps I wouldn't like it. However, once the book got going, the writing was good enough, and the characters interesting enough, that it really kept me interested. There were spots throughout the book where an editor could have helped clean up some sentence structure. I loved the surprise at the end--in a reversal of many sto ...more
Samuel Jones
Mar 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this. The premise is excellent, a far-future world where nano-technology and unlimited power have created a utopia. Here, there can be dragons (initially created by Disney, but now available as a genetic change to anyone who wants it).

Until "The Fall", when a dispute the last handful of politicians needed to run this paradise leads to civil war. All the power is drained so the Key-Holders can wage a high-tech "wizard war", bombarding each other and mounting armies of geneticall
Jun 08, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, ipad-reads, war, scifi
This book was a very standard read. The premise it was built upon was incredibly unique and attention grabbing. The book seemed to loose some of its luster as it progressed. The writing was standard, the characterization was also standard. Once "the fall" happened, the plot was so predictable it nearly made me put the book away unfinished.

If you are in the mood for something escapist, then this is your book.

My full review can be read at
Feb 01, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A perfect example of why authors should "kill their darlings". I very much enjoyed Ringo's previous series, where he had co-authors to temper his message. But this book (and series) came across as primarily a preaching of John's views on society - where, among other things, rape, while horrible, is something that happens and should be bourne stoically.

This series was the beginning of the end of my interest in anything Ringo writes on his own.
Jan 30, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: ebook
Read because I was bored and could put it on my Blackberry for free. Bland characters and unoriginal plot were the good parts. I could even deal with the adolescent fantasy elements. But after the propaganda and amateur rape psychology lectures, boredom won't be enough to get me to slog through the next in the series.
Ron Davis
Mar 13, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: milfic
Imagine a sci-fi story that suddenly creates a true fantasy world, with intelligent dragons, unicorns, orcs, elves and no gun powder. That's what happens in There will be dragons.

Now you've got a whole different kind of post apocalyptic story.

I enjoyed this books so much I read the whole series on my Kindle (available from Baen webscriptions for free BTW) in less than a week.
May 15, 2014 rated it did not like it
A potentially interesting premise marred by didactic prose, tedious plotting, a horrible view of women (the cover here is unrelated tease), and libertarian politics, including a ham-handed 41st century ode to the second amendment. Thanks for the free e-book Baen, I now know better to ever read a Ringo book again.
Michael Chatfield
Mar 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Is it a strange premise? Yes.
Does it trail off into the unrealistic? No.
Is it a fun read? Hell to the yes!
There Will Be Dragons like many of John Ringo's books is pretty out there kind of universe and premise. That said, it is damn interesting and gives you characters that you can dig your mental chops into and follow through one hell of a journey.
Jun 09, 2018 rated it it was ok
This is a five star premise ruined by the almost constant preaching that "in a world where all your technology fails, a handful of people who are still trained as AMERICAN MARINES HOO-AH will save the day with their knowledge of forging weapons, roman phalanxes, and boot-strapping libertarian goodness."
Jun 14, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: never-again
Honestly, I think John Ringo has issues with women. 8| This came across as really sexist, even when I tried to ignore it? And the story, while it had an interesting premise, just...ended up being done badly.
D.L. Morrese
May 15, 2014 rated it liked it
From the cover and short blurb, I thought this would be a witty mix of fantasy and sci-fi. It isn't. It's mostly a military fantasy with a bit of unlikely tech rationalization in the background to explain the monsters and magic. It wasn't really my thing, but others may like it.
Nov 22, 2008 rated it really liked it
Very good read and a very interesting scenario. Not a very deeply written book but it makes you think.
Feb 02, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I love post apocalypse novels, and this was one of the better ones.
Ralph McEwen
Free download from
Troy Neenan
Apr 21, 2019 rated it did not like it
From looking at the cover you immediately think High Fantasy but that's not exactly right. This book is actually futuristic science fiction... Well, I wouldn't say some fantasy elements. The author has a bad time balancing the fantasy and science fiction stuff that left me a bit confused. I will remind people that I lost interest with this novel at the three hour mark on my audio book, so take my opinion with a grain of salt.

Plot: The setting is the future where man-kind has gotten to the point
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • March Upcountry (Empire of Man, #1)
  • On Basilisk Station (Honor Harrington, #1)
  • 1632
  • 1633
  • Boundary (Boundary, #1)
  • A Desert Called Peace
  • In the Heart of Darkness (Belisarius, #2)
  • Off Armageddon Reef (Safehold, #1)
  • Sassinak (Planet Pirates, #1)
  • A Call to Duty (Honorverse: Manticore Ascendant, #1)
  • Hammer's Slammers
  • March to the Sea (Empire of Man, #2)
  • Target Rich Environment
  • Through Fiery Trials (Safehold, #10)
  • Descent into Darkness (Blood on the Stars Book 17)
  • Oath of Swords (War God, #1)
  • We Few (Empire of Man, #4)
See similar books…
John Ringo is a prolific author who has written in a wide variety of genres. His early life included a great deal of travel. He visited 23 foreign countries, and attended fourteen different schools. After graduation Ringo enlisted in the US military for four years, after which he studied marine biology.

In 1999 he wrote and published his first novel "A Hymn Before Battle", which proved successful.

Other books in the series

The Council Wars (4 books)
  • Emerald Sea (The Council Wars, #2)
  • Against the Tide (The Council Wars, #3)
  • East of the Sun, West of the Moon (The Council Wars, #4)

Related Articles

Space operas, magic, destiny, dystopia, aliens: There's a bit of something for everyone in 2020's latest offerings in science fiction and fantasy...
85 likes · 21 comments
“Shall I show him in or tell him to go find a short and unpleasant route to hell?” 56 likes
More quotes…