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Dragons: Worlds Afire (Forgotten Realms) Hardcover – 1 Jun 2006

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 6 reviews
40 of 43 people found the following review helpful
Four stories, Four worlds, All solid editions. 18 Jun. 2006
By Andy Gray - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Dragons: World Afire is a collaboration from Wizards of the Coast that has four novellas in it featuring stories from the four popular worlds of shared world fantasy books. These are; The Forgotten Realms, Dragonlance, Eberron, and Magic: The Gathering. All four novella feature stories involving dragons and the havoc they can cause. Wizards of the coast brought in some of the biggest names in each of the worlds to pen the stories. As well as some of the top fantasy artists as well to provide wonderful drawings of a dragon to start each story.

The stories are as follows:

#1- If They Ever Happen Upon My Lair by R.A. Salvatore (Forgotten Realms). This story is actually a prequel to Salvatore's latest book, Promise of the Witch-King. In this novel Salvatore explains one of the biggest questions that readers were left with after reading PotWK. Also, there is a scene in this novella that may be the single best description of a dragon I have ever read. It is a prime example of show don't tell and came across very well. The story itself is about average. While there is nothing overly special about it, it is still worth reading simply to answer one of the questions from PotWK. Fans of the Forgotten Realms and Salvatore will certainly understand this story.

#2 - Here Be Dragons {A Kender Tale} by Margaret Weis and Tracey Hickman (Dragonlance). I will freely admit reading the Dragonlance Chronicles is what started me on my fantast obsession. This novella is classic Weis and Hickman. This tale centers on Tasslehoff Burrfoot and the situations he can quickly find himself in. There are several moments in this novel that will cause a chuckle and fans of the Chronicles will surely appreciate this tale. Of the four stories in the book I would rate this one as the best, but there may be some personal bias there as well.

#3- Principle of Fire by Keith Baker (Eberron). This is a tale of deceit and has a couple plot twists within the few pages of the novella. It also adds a good amount of detail to the dragons of Eberron and what they are thinking and why they have done some of the things they do. This novella also adds some questions to the readers mind, enough so that in future Eberron books the reader may pay closer attention to things. If you are a fan of Eberron books, this is a must read for you. Mr. Baker does a decent job of furthering the world of Eberron and adding more material for the reader.

#4 - Unnatural Predator by Scott McGoug (Magic: The Gathering). I need to also admit here, that I have never read a Magic: The Gathering novel before so I didn't really know what to expect from it. This novella seemed a bit on the long side to me. There appeared to be a couple instances where it could have been shortened and still relayed the information relevant to the story. The story itself is a decent story with a couple plot twists, but nothing really special. Of course this may be a very necessary story to Magic: The Gathering fans, but I can't comment on that having never read a novel in that world before. I did enjoy reading it however.

My overall comments of the book as a whole. This seems to be an attempt by Wizards of the Coast to encourage readers of one world to cross over and read other worlds as well. What better thing to encourage that than stories about dragons. If not for I would have been highly disappointed in the price of the book. It retails for $29.95, but with the sale I was able to get it for $19.77. This needs to be mentioned because I don't feel there was $29 worth of stories in this book. Four stories totaling 142 pages does not warrant a $29 price tag, which is more than hardcover editions of the latest books by Salvatore, and Weis & Hickman. This book is certainly a good looking book, well put together, with wonderful drawings and illustrations, but not for that amount of money.

The assortment of stories is this books strength. There is humor, history, intrigue, plot twists and countless other things. The five authors enlisted for this project were the right ones in my opinion and I enjoyed the vast majority of this book.

Overall I would recommend this book to many people, but if you have to pay full price for it, I would hold off and look elsewhere.
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Dragons: Worlds Afire 4 Nov. 2006
By Epheros Aldor - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've been a fan of the Forgotten Realms since the beginning and the main reason I purchased this book was for the short story by R.A. Salvatore. I wanted to add this story to my collection of Realms novels and stories.

The book itself is very nice; the artwork inside is elaborate, the one story I did read was very well put together with respect to the style and feel of the whole book and made for an entertaining and quick read.

If one enjoys the other worlds, and I know I'll get around to reading the other stories soon, this is very good book to have. It features long standing authors of the worlds: R.A. Salvatore for the Realms, Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman for Dragonlance, Keith Baker, founder of Eberron, and Scott Mcgough of Magic: The Gathering. The overall design of the book, from cover to cover, is wonderful and should be included in any collection of shared world fiction.

I certainly appreciate the purchase.
Four in one, but an expensive one... 24 Sept. 2009
By L Gontzes - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Dragons: Worlds Afire consists of four dragon-related short stories reminiscent of Dragon Magazine, the Forgotten Realms books Realms of Dragons and Realms of Infamy, and the Dragonlance Dragons series.

If Ever They Happened Upon My Lair is the first and by far the best of the four.
R.A. Salvatore does a great job of providing an excellent supplement to the Bloodstone Lands saga (which at some point should be novelized and make the transition from the first edition H-series Bloodstone modules to novels and why not some day the big screen). In addition, the author's portrayal of the chaotic evil alignment and his description of dragon fear are superb.
Moreover, R.A. Salvatore provides for great dramatic effect with quotes such as:
1) "Nordwinnil's words caught in his throat as he turned to regard the pond and Ringo- or the two partial legs, knee-to-foot, standing in Ringo's boots where Ringo had just been. Nordwinnil's eyes widened and his jaws hung open as one of those legs tipped over, falling outward to plop into the mud," (p.10)
2) "They screamed. They burned. They melted together so completely that anyone who happened upon the scene would never know where Nordwinnil ended and Pergiss began," (p.11)
3) "Urshula clamped down, and the knight's lower torso dropped to the floor." (p.29)
4) "Biting out, his jaws covered her so that her head, feet, and one flailing arm fell free from her body," (p.33) and stealing the show...
5) "...few ever leave Urshula except scattered in piles of excrement." (p.20)
The only question mark was in regards to referring to the dragon as "Urshula" when it a male dragon.
In conclusion, R.A. Salvatore provides an accurate and realistic description of what goes through the minds of dwarves, liches, and dragons. 5 Stars

Here Be Dragons is a mini adventure involving Tasslehoff. It is a good short story albeit for the rather unrealistic ending. Moreover, "George" is not a name one encounters in the world of Krynn! Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman, the creators of Krynn of all people, should know that. Nevertheless, the authors do provide valuable insight into the psyche of kender e.g. "Caves draw kender like flames draw moths," (p.43) and "Besides being extremely curious, kender are utterly fearless..." (p.44)
4 Stars

The third story, Keith Baker's Principles of Fire, is set in a world that I am not familiar with nor am I a fan of: Eberron. I do not particularly enjoy the hybrid magical/technological world/environment; nevertheless, the plot was interesting enough to read it through. In the end it did not do anything for me. 2 Stars

I tried reading this final story, Unnatural Predator, five times (!) and failed every single time. Set in the world of Magic: The Gathering the story utterly failed to catch my attention and I just gave up trying. 1 Star

In short, although a must-buy for the D&D fan and collector, the product (i.e. the hardcover version of it) is ridiculously overpriced at $29.95. Total: 3 Stars
great book 30 Jun. 2015
By Snugglebutt - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
fantastic book.
Pretty art and great descriptions.
highly recommend it to anyone who is a fan of the realms series/genre.
Beautiful book 10 July 2010
By Sean Kavanagh - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The book was in wonderful condition and the price was as cheap as it comes!
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