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Dreaming the Serpent Spear (Boudica #4)

4.37  ·  Rating details ·  1,207 Ratings  ·  59 Reviews
It has been twenty years since the Romans first occupied Britannia, and the rebellion by Boudica and her people nears its bloody climax. Now, as the Roman army marches on Mona, the last protected village in Britannia, the only hope for her nation lies with Boudica. With so much to lose—the very lives of her children and an entire culture on the verge of obliteration—Boudic ...more
ebook, 464 pages
Published May 1st 2007 by Delta (first published February 13th 2006)
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Community Reviews

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Deborah Pickstone
I have absolutely loved this series. Sometimes my pernicketyness about getting the history exactly right is just blown away - this is one of those times. Besides, I like Dark Ages historical fiction because so little is known - so, that part of me is less easily triggered; it's very annoying when an otherwise great book keeps bringing me out of my dazey haze to be irritated. Miss Pedant. Anyway, I was cross throughout that the author kept calling Londinium 'Lugdunum', which was Lyons.

In this cas
Hilary Green
Oct 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
No fiction has captured my imagination and occupied my mind, waking and dreaming, to the extent that these four books have, for a very long time. Which is why I have read all four straight off, without taking a break to read something else in between. I wrote about the first book, Dreaming the Eagle, some time back, so what I said there still stands. Scott has created a world of warriors and dreamers where to kill or to die in battle is the highest honour, for both men and women. It is her great ...more
Graham Crawford
Jul 23, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I have a love hate relationship with the works of Manda Scott. Her subject matter and overall plot design is often engaging but the quality of her writing can be dreadfully variable. Some days she gets it together enough to move me, but on others she buries herself under laughable purple prose and melodrama. I much prefer her camp action thriller series about the Emperor's spy, which is essentially a lighthearted James Bond in sandals. She's so much more enjoyable when the bar is lowered.

The mor
Ronda  Tutt
Aug 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, historical
Brilliant and Mind Blowing!

Wow what a journey Boudica goes through in raising a war host to fight against Rome. Even with many of the sacrifices to the gods and the dedication from the tribe warriors to include some of the Roman Soldiers who turned to Boudica's side the war was a brutal ending with great loss on each side.

The story that the author weaves is brilliant. This is not a fast pace read, it is filled with lots of details and must be savored to get the full effect of the feelings toward
This last book of four almost left me in tears at the end. Especially the reconciliation of Valerius and Corvus before the battle - major lump in throat!. A big thumbs down for history, however can't change what happened I guess. Great read for anyone who likes historical novels. All four books for me personally were a joy to read. Well done Ms Scott!

Aug 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Finished this series again last night. I am always reading them, even while reading other things. I cry the whole way through all four because they are so profoundly moving, engaging... and of the spirit. Can't live without them. Thank you, m. So much. You don't even know.
Tamara Agha-Jaffar
Dreaming the Serpent Spear is the fourth and final book in the Boudica series by Manda Scott. This has been a captivating series about the warrior queen Boudica as she spearheaded the Celtic struggle to defeat the Roman occupation of Britannia. This final book coalesces the threads from previous books and brings them to a culminating, climactic battle in which Boudica is killed and the Celtic warriors are forced to retreat in defeat. Although history tells us the Boudica does not live to see the ...more
Aug 11, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I got half way through this fourth and last in the series and read into a quagmire. It was a struggle for me to finish this. As often happens in series, an author will drag out a book to make it into a book. Given the pace of the first three books, I'm thinking this tale could have been made to end in book three. Manda Scott is an excellent writer and did her research, but sometimes enough is enough.
May 20, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love historical novels about this period. I started read this quadrilogy a few years ago but stopped because the last two books hadn't been released yet. A few weeks ago I got the last two and read the set all the way through. Scott is a very good writer and the subject is interesting but her more modern agenda tends to weigh down the narrative. More time than is wise is given to the interaction between these barbarian savages and the ancestors and ghosts of the dead who seem to plague their e ...more
Robert Herworth
Aug 26, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I to halfway through the book and and said 'stuff it' hid it away in cupboard so that daylight may never look upon this book again.
I read the other books and i couldn't help but feel bored. Bored out of my skull, sure, we you can kill romans who doesn't want to?
But it would have been nice to add say, a little romance? some side plots?
We all knew the main plot for the series, thats all well and good. But add something else to it, just about all the characters were flat as pancakes. The only chara
Hertzan Chimera
Nov 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Altogether (despite a shaky (or rather TIMID) book one start) this is a top-shelf five-star series of books exploring the ancient dreamworld of our 'celtic' ancestors...

Personally, I would have liked detailed descriptions of more of the battles early in the series and more-integrated narrative evidence of the Tribal Hedonism that smears itself all over this fourth novel in the series. There's also a very weird Joan of Arc vibe to the visions and messages the heroes receive throughout each book -
Rob Humphreys
Sep 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very enthralling final book in the series.
Things really paced fast in the third book and I went into the last one without pausing as it was all fresh on my mind. I just devoured the pages and even cancelled everything to sit down and read the final 150 pages in one afternoon.
I was not sure of the true ending so had an open mind how it would end by the author. The final battle scenes were engrossing and some of the most exciting I've read.
I felt sad when it ended and would like to know how the ch
Dec 28, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: i-own
I have that horrible feeling now the one you get when you've been rushing through a book to find out what happens and when you do and it all ends you realise you should have savoured it because this was the last in the series!

An amazing end to a brilliant story. What more can I say? I highly recommend these books to anyone. The characters are so well created and I find myself nodding and grinning along with them, the plot is intricate and all though this wasn't the fastest paced book of the four
Mar 24, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It’s over. It was sad, as I expected, but it could have been worse. One of the fascinations of reading the Boudica series is that Scott will bring events right up to the point where you think it can’t get any worse and she is going to have to pull away except she doesn’t and the worst does happen. Of course, heroic things happen. It couldn’t be a book about iron-age warriors without heroism. But somehow, even when they do it is still sad. Oh, maybe I’m just sad the series is over. I will say tha ...more
Sadie Anjum
Apr 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed the final book of the Boudica series. This book sets the scene for the final battle, which is utterly epic. The ending was a shock to me, not what I was expecting at all. I love the character developments in this book. Each character comes to the final battle scarred and broken in their own ways, having been through the worst, yet the fire and passion that burns within them, to save their land and fight alongside the Boudica is awesome and very well written. I love everything ab ...more
The 'dreamer' aspect left me completely cold. But I've enjoyed following Bán/Valerius through the whole tetralogy. He seemed to me to have the most character development. Boudica's revolt and final battle were both VERY exciting. I could visualize the whole scene. Boudica's end as told in this novel sounded much more plausible than Tacitus's saying she poisoned herself. The author has a gift for descriptive prose. I realize she played with history, but it irritated me she located both Lugdunum a ...more
Apr 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Would have been 4 stars but the extra is for Valerius and Corvus by the river. Yep I cried at that (just a little bit). Their final meeting in battle wasn't as intense and heart-wrenching as it could've been, but I suppose it was Boudica's story, not Valerius'. More's the pity, such a great character.

Also noticed Scott left out some of the more grisly parts of the sacking of the Roman cities, like cutting off women's breasts and sowing them to their mouths. I suppose this could make readers empa
Ted Hopkins
Aug 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The word "Dreaming" in the title of all four books in this series is important. The dream-like quality moves these books more towards fantasy than would normally be expected of historical fiction. Unlike Pauline Gedge's covering of the same ground, Scott occasionally delves into magic to advance her plot. Scott's Boudica and Caradoc are both very different characters than Gedge's. An absorbing read.
Neill Smith
Nov 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As Cunomar becomes the leader of the shebears, Graine heals and again gains her powers as a dreamer, and Breaca regains her power and motivation the Roman commander is tasked with taking Mona or dying. As he leads the legions to attack Mona in the west the way is clear for the Valerius and the Eceni to assemble the tribes to destroy Camulodunum leading to the final clash in the war for ancient Britain. This is a well written and well researched highly recommended series.
Apr 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites
The four books in this series, of which this is the last, are superbly written. Densely packed with battle action and the human interactions of both sides, although firmly on Boudica's team, the books are incredibly moving. I fought back tears more than once and felt myself ride with Breaca, Valerius/Ban and Corvus, and dream with Luan Mac Calma and Airmid. The songs of the Eceni and the tribes who fought with them are still alive.
Sarah Davies hull
A fantastic end to an amazing series of books. I cried when I finished it and felt an enormous sense of loss. The characters had become like family to me. I wasn't much of a reader before so I am incredibly grateful to Scott, not just for the books but also for igniting a ferocious appetite for literature.
Jan 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I thoroughly enjoyed this last book in the Boudica series. I am greatly impressed with Manda Scott's talent as a story teller and am now having difficulty finding a book that promises to engage me in it's characters and their adventures the way Scott's books have over these past several weeks. Any suggestions, my fellow readers?
Jan 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have to say I'm head over heels in love with this series. One of the best parts for me has been watching the different characters grow. Most of them have been with us for two or three books at least now and they've all come so far. As a final piece to a stunning series this worked beautifully.
L. Sengul
Dec 03, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great finale! I wished there was more!
Oct 14, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved these books. Now I'm off on a boudica tangent. Great for lovers of historical fiction, king arthur, roman warfare, etc. Not for those with a weak stomach for the realities and gore of war.
Enjoyed this final volume very much. Satisfying way to end. Reads as fantasy as much as historical fiction, but that is bound to happen with such a long gone period.
The Idle Woman
Dec 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The brutal conclusion of the third book has left Breaca lingering near death, flogged and beaten, and her eight-year-old daughter Graine traumatised by her rape at the hands of Roman legionaries. They are damaged both in body and mind, with Breaca having lost her shimmering insight as a leader, and Graine finding herself suddenly shut off from her dreaming. Both of them must heal, and those who love them try to find the time to let them do so. Graine goes to Mona, where the dreamers can care for ...more
Lorina Stephens
In this the final novel in Manda Scott's Boudica series, the entire historical credibility of the novels falls apart for this reader. Scott seemingly abandons research in favour of complete immersion into lucid-dreaming and its alleged effects upon the physical world.

Her portrayal of pre-pubescent Grainne, who was raped by half a century of Roman troops, goes beyond any hope of credibility. If the child lived after such brutality, it is highly likely she would have been so traumatized both phys
Sep 29, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this but not as much as the first 3 in the series. I would however, still highly recommend this book and the entire series. I have tried reading other authors about this era and non engage me as much as Boudica's story as told by Manda Scott.

The worst bit in the books was that I actually found all the battle scenes a bit confusing, I couldn't follow any of them thoroughly. In the end I had to ignore that I didn't really know where people were, and how they got there, and just go with t
J.S. Dunn
3.5 Issues with shifting points of view whenever convenient, it seemed, for the author not necessarily for the reader. The insertion of Arthurian fantasy was unwelcome. Some of the symbolism from the mythology is accurate or this rating would have been a 2.

The younger daughter would have been too traumatized, especially if she were age 9, from the brutal assault by the Romans to have acted to assist the elders. Her ability to be a seer, and that of the other elders on Ynys Mon [ now Anglesey] ,
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Novelist, columnist and broadcaster MC Scott (aka Manda Scott) trained as a veterinary surgeon in Glasgow and worked at the Universities of Cambridge and Dublin, specialising in anaesthesia. A brief three year stint as a Director of the computer games company, Frontier Developments (Elite, Frontier First Encounter, Wallace and Gromit; Elite: Dangerous) bridged the gap from veterinary medicine to w ...more
More about Manda Scott...

Other Books in the Series

Boudica (4 books)
  • Dreaming the Eagle (Boudica, #1)
  • Dreaming the Bull (Boudica, #2)
  • Dreaming the Hound (Boudica, #3)

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