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Summary

The searing follow-up to 2018’s most celebrated fantasy debut – The Poppy War.

Rin is on the run.... 

Haunted by the atrocity she committed to save her people, addicted to opium, and driven by the murderous commands of Phoenix, the vengeful god who has blessed Rin with her fearsome power.

Rin’s only reason for living is to get revenge on the traitorous Empress who sold her homeland, Nikan, to her enemies.

With no other options, Rin joins forces with the powerful Dragon Warlord, who has a plan to conquer Nikan, unseat the Empress, and create a new Republic. She throws herself into his war.

After all, making war is all she knows how to do....

©2019 R.F. Kuang (P)2019 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic reviews

"A wholly unique experience." (The Washington Post)

"A blistering, powerful epic of war and revenge that will captivate you to the bitter end." (Kameron Hurley, author of The Stars Are Legion

"An outstanding debut." (Daily Mail)

What listeners say about The Dragon Republic

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Less shock value, more complex

An excellent sequel that fully realises the potential of The Poppy War. Can't for the final book!

2 people found this helpful

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interesting but obnoxious

TLDR
I struggled to finish this book due to Rin's personality and obnoxity. But I still love it.

Detailed

I loved many parts of this book, and wish I could rate it higher. The worldbuilding is really good, and the premise of the civil war and many of the plotpoints are amazing!
HOWEVER... This might just be my own opinion, but I found the main character close to unbearable. I understand and empathises why Rin makes the decisions she does, and I know the reason why she is descending. But I found her soooooo obnoxious, selfrighteous and naive, with no real understanding of the word "Empathy". I struggled empathising with her for long parts of the book, almost feeling satisfaction when things did not go her way.
In a way, I kind of like having a flawed protagonist, and I see what the author was going for. Sadly I think that the narrator played a big part in my reason for disliking Rin as much as I did.
BUT
I... I still kind of like Rin. She is interesting, a layered character with flaws and capable. and I understand her. I can see the logical and emotional threads that guides her every decision. the author did a really good job. She reminded me a lot of Azula from Avatar the last Airbender, and also a bit of season 1 Zuko. Comparing her to them, is for the few people who have not yet see AtlA, a very high standard in my own opinion.

1 person found this helpful

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Brilliant

I really loved the first two books cannot wait to finish the third. A brilliant series

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Grows on you...

It took me a few attempts to finish this book. I loved The Poppy War but really struggled with Rin's attitude and passivity throughout this book.
The final, and successful, attempt to finish happened after I read a review of the book commenting on this particular element and discussing it in relation to character development in response to the events of The Poppy War. This particular reviewer felt that Rin's character traits that I had found difficult to read about were, in fact, a completely reasonable path for her character to take in light of what we already know about her. She found her God and her power but the cost was incredibly high. She is, in effect, traumatised by her experiences - not just those that happened to her but those that she caused. Rin, who I always felt was strong but quite brittle, ended up breaking under the weight of responsibility and her complete abdication of control/responsibility for her subsequent actions is how she manages this in this second book.
I found that I whole-heartedly agreed with this perspective and found myself able to accept Rin as she now is and enjoy how the plot developed.
I would encourage any reader to set aside expectations of what they believe a "hero/heroine" should be and to approach this book with a much of an open mind/ blank slate as you can. This very improved my experience of the book and I'm very much looking forward to reading The Burning God with the same approach.

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Relentlessly depressing

Our hero learns no lessons, is an annoying brat who continues to make the wrong decisions.
So many awful, terrible, depressing things happen in this book it is very hard to finish. All tunnel no light.

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Greay story

I generally like the story, but sometimes the change of voices to fit characters are a bit annoying. And I was quite annoyed at how whiny Ren was in the first and start of this book. But if you can get over that, the story is really good.

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So much suffering

The author puts Rin through the wringer is this compelling follow up to The Poppy War. The campaign by the Republic smacks of the German invasion of Russia as rapid success is stalled by winter. Recommended.

Narration was good

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Not as good as the first book

Struggled to listen to this book as the first 20+ chapters drag on and on with her being so useless

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Wow what a ride and who to trust

This books just adds to the awesomeness and craziness of the first one. Really good continued story on from the first and a real emotional journey you go on with rin here.
Super excited for the last book and to see how this all work plays out.
Who to trust.

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TDR

A very strong, complicated and beautiful narrative. An amazing sequel to a great first book. R.F. Kuang’s fiction is getting better and better! 🖤

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  • lewis godsell
  • 02-09-19

Better than The Poppy War

I thoroughly enjoyed this book.
Whilst i enjoyed the poppy war i found it to be a little disjointed and unfocused. The Dragon Republic rectified these issues for me as the story flowed better and was thematically tighter.
I particularly enjoyed the way Rin's character developed in this book and the greater depth given to some of the other characters.
The plot is great with some very interesting political machinations and character relationships.
This is the best book of any genre that i"ve read in a long time and so much better than what the vast majority other fantasy authors have to offer.
Very highly recommended.

2 people found this helpful

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  • celsbels
  • 19-02-20

When is the next one coming out?!?

Again hardly slept to listen to it in (almost) one sitting! Great plot twists and turns, and the end left me gutted!!

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  • ransona
  • 12-10-19

excellent second book.

Now I am eager for the third book. if it's half as good as the book 2, then this Saga will be memorable.