5.0 out of 5 stars Was disappointed at first release
I remember reading this book when it came out, and at the time, it was incredibly frustrating. I was looking for story advancement, not character building.
This book is an exercise in fleshing out the characters that we know and building on some of the dropped hints in his other books. We get the full story of a significant battle and the revelation of one of...
Published 16 months ago by J. Goh
3.0 out of 5 stars You're in the army now...
A certain Dragon, Fornia, steals a sword. Morrolan wants the sword, so he starts a campaign against Fornia. Vlad has taken a dislike to Fornia, so he enlists in Morrolan's army to get the sword back. And during the course of the book, he discovers how unpleasant life can be in the army...The longer you read, the more interesting it gets. (I really don't like it when Vlad...
Published on Sep 22 2000 by Setsuna Lavode
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5.0 out of 5 stars Was disappointed at first release,
This review is from: Dragon (Mass Market Paperback)I remember reading this book when it came out, and at the time, it was incredibly frustrating. I was looking for story advancement, not character building.
This book is an exercise in fleshing out the characters that we know and building on some of the dropped hints in his other books. We get the full story of a significant battle and the revelation of one of the Great Weapons.
I love the book; it's extremely well written, and Brust's characterisation is excellent as usual, but I don't necessarily recommend reading it in its publication order. I like reading it right after Jhereg or Taltos. It makes the rest of the series hang together a little better.
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting despite being stylistically awkward,
This review is from: Dragon (Mass Market Paperback)This is a very interesting work by Brust. Both interesting in that the plot is of interest and the awkward style which doesn't quite work but is also interesting nonetheless.
After Orca, we go back in time to Vlad's time in the Dragon army. Vlad originally starts out being the wisecracking crimelord that he was in the beginnning of the series, yet upon volunteering for the armed conflict he seems to be much more like the weary Vlad of Athyra/Orca reviewing his life. It seems Brust's personal growth means you can never go back home again, even if you're a fictional character. Which is all for the best, I didn't like the return to the early shallow wise-cracking Vlad after reading Athyra. I was pleased when the character started displaying a more mature view later in the book.
Making matters more complex is the fact that Brust seamlessly weaves three timelines in the book from Vlad's point of view and you are moved from one to the other without warning. We are presented with 1) The Build-up 2) The final confrontation and 3) A post confrontation encounter and we jump from one to the other as Vlad dictates his experiences to a recording device.
This struck me as trying to be too clever and artistic and wasn't pulled off well enough. I think Brust's reach didn't meet his goals here.
For the plot, we have a comfortable army story, nothing too special but well told. Those who enjoy such tales will enjoy this one.
4.0 out of 5 stars A change of pace for the Taltos series,
This review is from: Dragon (Mass Market Paperback)This is one of my favorite books from the Vlad Taltos series. This book is slightly different from the other books in the series in that a majority of the action concerns Vlad's time in the army. But the style of writing and sense of humor is still intact, along with Vlad's sidekick/pet Loiosh
One of the only problems that I have with this book, and a minor problem at that, is that several different timeframes will be on the same page with no real seperation between them. Once you get used to it you'll be fine, but a bit confusing.
You can start the series with this book, but you be better off starting with Taltos and trying to read the series in chronological order as opposed to publication order.
5.0 out of 5 stars A Return to the Original Vlad Taltos,
This review is from: Dragon (Mass Market Paperback)This novel is a jewel in the Vlad Taltos series. Even though written after every book in the series but Issola, this takes place both before and after Yendi. You see, there are a few chapters that divert from the main plot. That may sound confusing, but these two stories come together at the end. Anyway, the story is basically that the mob boss/witch/assassin Vlad Taltos is summoned by his friend Morrolan of the House of the Dragon. Vlad helps out in a war between Morrolan and another Dragon. The whole war was initiated in the first place for Barritt's Tomb, which isn't even a tomb and the late Barritt was not entombed there. The tomb is a place where many Morganti (soul destroying) weapons collected by Barritt are kept. Much of the novel is the everyday fighting and lifestyle of Vlad and company in the Dragon army. Some of the story is also infiltration and strategy. There's all the Vlad charm in here as well with the humor of both Vlad and his Jhereg familiar Loiosh.
This is a great start for a newcomer to the series. You don't need a foundation given to you from the other books to understand or enjoy this one unlike Teckla and the ones following it.
5.0 out of 5 stars lovely,
This review is from: Dragon (Mass Market Paperback)I must say, I was a bit confused at certain points in this book, as I'd never read anything in the Vlad Taltos series before. What possessed me to start with this one, I don't know.
Anyway. Back to my review. I thought the plot was very interesting, and I found I could not, for the life of me, put this book down. I attempted, really. Many times. It's rather frowned upon if you're reading such filth in class while your supposed to be learning about wind pressure and such. Fascinating stuff, that.
I think Vlad Taltos is an interesting character and will look forward to reading the rest of the series(in order, this time ;).
4.0 out of 5 stars An assassin goes to war,
This review is from: Dragon (Mass Market Paperback)Contemplating my collection of Vlad Taltos books, I have sometimes been annoyed that Brust has opted to begin re-releasing the older books bound into collections in publication order rather than grouping them by internal chronology. Then I come to _Dragon_ as I try to figure out the 'correct' order, and I drop the whole question.
In _Dragon_, Brust has experimented with nonlinear storytelling with two alternating threads of action. In the present, we have Vlad's adventures as an intermediary between Sethra the Younger and Aliera e'Kieron (between the events of _Yendi_ and _Jhereg_). Aliera has the sword of Kieron the Conqueror, the most famous of her ancestors, one of the founders of the Empire; Sethra the Younger, of course, wants it for symbolic value, as part of one of her schemes to inspire wars of conquest against the kingdoms of the east. In the main, though, this is the tale of Vlad's own experiences with war: how a respectable crime boss and assassin got involved with the Battle of Baritt's Tomb after the events of _Taltos_,
Wait a minute - Dragaerans' bodies are always sent to Deathsgate Falls as their souls enter the Paths of the Dead. How could Baritt have had a tomb? Well, 'tomb' is a misnomer. A really distinguished Dragaeran (not just someone with a title, or money) sometimes receives a monument. Vlad, to date, hasn't learned just what Baritt did to earn the honor, although he's curious.
Baritt's 'Tomb' is a mountain.
Morrolan e'Drien and Aliera attended the memorial service at the mountain, which was actually a neutral time and place at that point; the hostilities had already begun when Count Fornia arranged the theft of an obscure item from Morrolan's collection of Morganti weapons, a worthless, huge sword, apparently just to provoke Morrolan into declaring war. (Private wars of this kind are relatively common in the Empire, especially in the house of the Dragon.) Vlad, of course, was only concerned with his investigation of the theft and of Morrolan's security procedures - until Fornia sent three Phoenix guards to beat him up in his home. At that point, he volunteers his services to Morrolan - and an assassin who can double as a saboteur isn't to be scorned.
Not much of Vlad's Organization business in this story; he's put that into Kragar's hands while he collects some revenge on Fornia. Not a lot of his smart-aleck humour, either; he's in the army for the first time in his life, and we get a practical lesson in battle-magics and Dragaeran warfare. Fornia, of course, is ultimately a dead man, facing not one but two opponents with Great Weapons: Morrolan's Blackwand and Sethra's Iceflame. The trashy Morganti greatsword that started the whole mess winds up...well, check it out.
5.0 out of 5 stars An Assassin's Life,
By A Customer
This review is from: Dragon (Mass Market Paperback)This book is a book that gets you hooked and keeps you reading. It is the best book I have read so far. It is basically about an assassin that gets a grudge then joins an army to get revenge on that one person! He starts in a group of dragons that helps him adapt to a soldier's life. I hope I don't give to much of the book away but you should read this book. You will love it. I am suprised that this book isn't more popular...
5.0 out of 5 stars Must have for fans of Vlad!,
This review is from: Dragon (Mass Market Paperback)Simply one of the very best in this series. Smart, funny, thoughtful. Loved this and read it again immediately!!
3.0 out of 5 stars You're in the army now...,
This review is from: Dragon (Mass Market Paperback)A certain Dragon, Fornia, steals a sword. Morrolan wants the sword, so he starts a campaign against Fornia. Vlad has taken a dislike to Fornia, so he enlists in Morrolan's army to get the sword back. And during the course of the book, he discovers how unpleasant life can be in the army...The longer you read, the more interesting it gets. (I really don't like it when Vlad is being introspective, though, but there isn't much of that in this one.)It isn't the best book ever, but it's a Vlad book and thus a must-read. Especially since Vlad's Dragon friends are in top form, Morrolan being haughty and nonchalant, Sethra knowledgeable and mysterious, and Aliera fiery and ruthless as ever.
4.0 out of 5 stars Dragon: A Prequel Of Sorts,
This review is from: Dragon (Hardcover)Tired of epic fantasy? Irritated by authors who imitate Tolkien over and over? Want something new and different?
Put this in your glass and drink it.
Vlad Taltos is not your typical fantasy hero. He ain't no farm boy with a destiny to fulfill nor is he an apprentice to a mighty wizard blah, blah, blah. Vlad Taltos is an assassin and mob boss and most of the Vlad Taltos novels are told from his point of view.
Dragon is the eighth Vlad Taltos novel (but the second one chronologically). In this one, Vlad joins the military, fights in a famous battle and nearly gets killed a few times -- all in the name of revenge. There is no destiny here, no prophecy that must be filled, this novel is about simple revenge, greed and not so honorable honor.
This is epic fantasy turned upside-down and spanked on it's bottom. And it is great! Steven Brust certainly puts the likes of Terry Brooks and Robert Jordan to shame because Brust presents us with new and unique fantasy. It's epic fantasy with a sarcastic wit and very fallible characters.
Hey, Dragon and all the Vlad Taltos novels are good books. Pick 'em up.
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Dragon by Steven Brust (Mass Market Paperback - Nov 15 1999)
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