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King's Dragon (Crown of Stars, Book 1) Paperback – 2 Apr 1998


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King's Dragon (Crown of Stars, Book 1) + Prince of Dogs (Crown of Stars, Book 2) + The Burning Stone (Crown of Stars, Book 3)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 608 pages
  • Publisher: Orbit; New Ed edition (2 April 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1857236092
  • ISBN-13: 978-1857236095
  • Product Dimensions: 10.8 x 3.6 x 17.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 176,762 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

This could be the breakout book for Kate Elliott . . . what really counts are her characters. Well-drawn and vivid, they come alive as both people from a very foreign place and people we care about. They keep the plot irresistibly moving forward and draw us into her work. The book is solid, exciting and engrossing - a grand and powerful piece of writing all in all. (Katharine Kerr, author of DAGGERSPELL)

Entirely captivating... an indispensible technique in conjuring convincing fictional worlds. (PUBLISHER'S WEEKLY)

enough adventure, suspense, and character development here to reward most readers. (STARBURST)

I look forward avidly to the next volume. (INTERZONE)

Book Description

The first book in what promises to be a gripping and enthralling fantasy epic' - THE TIMES

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A. Whitehead TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 3 Sep 2007
Format: Paperback
Kate Elliott (the pen-name of American writer Alis A. Ramussen) sensibly starts things off on a small scale with the opening book in the Crown of Stars series. The setting is the continent of Novaria, a fantasised version of Europe in the early medieval period. The opening volume takes place in the unified kingdoms of Wendar and Varre (Germanic states by other names), which through dynastic marriage are now ruled jointly by King Henry. However, his elder half-sister Sabella plots rebellion against him and mobilises the Varren nobles to war. At the same time, the savage nonhuman Eika are heavily raiding the northern coast of the kingdom and besieging the city of Gent, and King Henry's court is involved in intrigue as Henry plots to make his bastard son Sanglant (the result of a union between Henry and an Aoi or elf woman in his youth), his heir, to the displeasure of his eldest legitimate daughter Sapentia.

This opening novel follows three principal characters. Alain is a foundling, raised by his foster-family and promised to the Church. However, the destruction of the local monastary by Eika raiders sets Alain on a new path as his destiny intersects with that of Count Lavastine, who coincidentally once had a bastard son sent to be raised by freeholding family, a decision he now regrets. Readers may groan at this cliche and it is rather predictable in this opening volume. However, Elliott cleverly subverts this expectation in later volumes in the series.

The second POV character is Liath, a beautiful young woman who has spent much of her life on the run with her father, fleeing from unseen, unknown enemies who desire her father's immense knowledge of astrological magic.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 12 July 2004
Format: Paperback
I'm still not sure about this book, though I will probably try the second in the series to see how it progresses.
On the one hand, traditional fantasy fare; a pair of teenagers thrown into events that they would never have dreamt of being involved in a year before, largely seeing the world through their innocent eyes. In other words, derivative of most other fantasy novels, and therefore, as a basis for a book, frankly now rather boring.
On the other hand, it is well written, there are a number of subplots surrounding the central theme, not to mention hints of plots that have yet to be uncovered - presumably in later novels. And above all, a rather more realistic portrayal of such a world than you traditionally get.
But my biggest problem with the novel, and what most discourages me about reading it, and further entries in the series, stems from that realism. The author acknowledges at the front the role various experts on medieval Europe have played in her writing of the series. Which is just the problem - to a large extent the novel is SET in medieval Europe. The Church, in particular, is blatantly the Catholic Church anytime up to around the reformation. She's even hardly bothered to change the names - the pope has become the scopos, bishops are now biscops and so on. The Emperor that people keep referring to is Charlemagne. Frankly, in my fantasy novels, although I like realism, I also like the author to have put a little effort into creating something unique. Kate Elliot hasn't, she's merely changed the names, and introduced references (medieval Europe references, at that) to sorcery. Oh, and she's made women more politically powerful. Much as I think this has potential, I can't get over the feeling that it should really be in the historical fiction section.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 21 Mar 2001
Format: Paperback
This was a very good book. It follows two story lines, from points of View from Alain and Liath. Alain who is fostered by Henri, lives a simple life. When he becomes 16 he is to be sent to the Monastery, but things turn out to be different. His character build up was excellent, and I really like how his Dreams and Visions are shown. He does not know who his real father was or his mother. There are many surprises in the box for him, and dilema's.
Liath and her father have been running away from place to place since her mother was killed 8 years ago. she has knowledge which cannot whatever the matter been put into the wrong hands. Her story line at the begining is a bit too slow, though near the end gets much more interesting.
The characters in the book are superbly worked out. The supporting characters are also well drafted. But the two main character's have there own destinies, but who can they trust with there secrets. I was hoping the two characters would end up meeting but they don't in this one. The only downside to the book is, it can be a bit too slow in certain parts of the book, which makes you want to skip some pages so its speed can pick up, but that way you may end up mising important information. The other problem about this book is, that it gets way too carried away with the religious stuff. Overall I really I liked this book, and have already order Prince of Dogs the follow on. The book finishes and you cannot guess which way the book will go next. I really wanted to give this book 4.5, but as I can't I gave it 5.
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