The dragon keepers and the fledgling dragons are forging a passage up the treacherous Rain Wild River. They are in search of the mythical Elderling city of Kelsingra, and are accompanied by the liveship Tarman, its captain, Leftrin, and a group of hunters who must search the forests for game with which to keep the dragons fed.
With them are Alise, who has escaped her cold marriage to the cruel libertine Hest Finbok in order to continue her study of dragons, and Hest's amanuensis, the Bingtown dandy Sedric.
Rivalries and romances are already threatening to disrupt the band of explorers, but external forces may prove to be even more dangerous. Chalcedean merchants are keen to lay hands on dragon blood and organs to turn them to medicines and profit. Their traitor has infiltrated the expedition and will stop at nothing to obtain the coveted body parts.
And then there are the Rain Wilds themselves: mysterious, unstable, and ever perilous, its mighty river running with acid, its jungle impenetrable, and its waterways uncharted. Will the expedition reach their destination unscathed? Does the city of Kelsingra even exist?
Only one thing is certain: the journey will leave none of the dragons nor their human companions unchanged by the experience.
©2010 HarperCollins Publishers (P)2010 HarperCollins Publishers
"A satisfying conclusion"
What an excellent sequel to Dragon Keeper! This continued in the same vein - excellent writing, excellent narration and so vivid I feel I would recognise Kelsingra myself.
The writing is so evocative I feel as though I am right there with the characters, sharing their experiences. The characters are well rounded and completely believable, even the dragons! The conclusion to all of their individual arcs feels natural and not contrived. The narration, while different from Dragon Keeper, is still excellent, although it is a little jarring at first.
This book is definitely more adult than the first, and while not explicit I would advise caution for those with young ones in the house.
My only criticism is that the series is too short - I would have loved to listen to more of these books! Also, Robin Hobb has written many other books based in the same world, and a reading of these would make this later series a lot easier to understand than diving straight in as I did at first.
A highly recommended listen, although it is very addictive so allow more time than usual!
"Good story about t'dragons ;)"
I really liked it, a good continuation of the previous book - if you haven't read/heard number 1 I doubt you will get the most out of this one - but I agree with the other reviewer, why did they change the narrator?? This narrator is good, but the change was disconcerting. One of the characters went from sounding like Ray Winstone in book 1 to Alan Bennett in book 2! Although I personally wouldn't let it put me off a third installment as if the narrators had been the other way round I might still have flagged it as a problem. You do have to pay attention though as it can be a little tricky to tell which character is talking, though I am undecided if this is a fault with the audio process or some decision the original author took. Bottom line if you loved the first one they get this now! If you only liked the first one maybe wait till you can get it cheap, if you didn't like the first one then this won't turn you around.
While the book is very good, the story flows well and the characters develop believably, the narrator has been changed from the first book, and its not a good change, the original narrator was very good for the series, and expressed the characters well, so that you knew who she was portraying without needing to be told, but this narrator has ruined the book for me, if she is narrating the next installment, I doubt I will get it, shame.
"More from the best"
I love Robin Hobbs work, the Rain wilds books are descriptive, interesting ans well worth anyone's time.
"Robin Hobb's 'Rain Wild Chronicles'"
The Rain Wild Chronicles continues the saga that began with 'The Live Ship Traders'. We learn in the earlier books that the serpents must migrate to the rain wilds to 'hatch' into dragons and in the 'Tawny Man' series Tintaglia, the last dragon, finds a mate buried in ice. Tintaglia has persuaded the humans to help the hatched dragons but unfortunately problems arise and the young dragons are unable to fly.This latest series tells particularly of the dragon's search for the ancient Elderling city of Kelsingra, with the help of their human 'keepers',and a live ship barge.
The two books make a superb addition to Robin Hobb's Live Ship stories and can be read independently of the earlier books I think. Saskia Butler does an excellent job with the narration. Be warned that having tried the books, you may well become hooked, like me, and end up reading everything that Hobb has written!
"Mills and Boon"
Don't get me wrong, I like Robin Hobb as an author and she writes well and mostly has great characters. However this book and its predecessor was to much Mills and Boon for my taste. It seems these days almost mandatory to have homosexual characters and I found it completely unecessary for the plot. Maybe its just me, but it really could have been much better without. I wont be purchasing the next one.
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