Read a sample extract from Dragon Haven by Robin Hobb. (PDF file viewer required)
Dragon Haven (The Rain Wild Chronicles, Book 2) Hardcover – 4 Mar 2010
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Praise for Robin Hobb:
'Hobb is superb, spinning wonderful characters and plots from pure imagination.'
'Hobb is one of the great modern fantasy writers… what makes her novels as addictive as morphine is not just their imaginative brilliance but the way her characters are compromised and manipulated by politics.'
'Hobb is a remarkable storyteller.'
'Robin Hobb writes achingly well'
Praise for The Liveship Traders series:
'Even better than the Assassin books. I didn't think that was possible'
George R R Martin
From the Back Cover
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, 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 expeditionand 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.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Hobb continues to write gripping narative with yet another book by her causing me to stay up to the early hours to finish it. Development of the charecters was excellent and not always along predicted routes, which is what makes the book worth reading.
If I wanted to be picky I could say that really there are too many charecters being followed and this sometimes detracts from the story line by the rapid changing of views. Yet this perhaps adds to the charm of the book, making it clear it is not in the Assassin vain. This book is about a group, not an individual.
For anyone who is a fan of the Liveship and Assassin books, this answers some questions. Not all though! Hobb has the good sense to leave our imagination to fill in what happens at the end of the epic journey started in Dragon Keeper, without feeling you have been cheated of plot.
In this volume we follow the Tarman crew, the dragons and their keepers deeper into the Rain Wilds as they continue their doomed expedition in search of the fabled Elderlings city of Kelsingra. We witness the dragons' physical and mental development, and the various changes the keepers go through, tending to the wondrous creatures. Friendships hatch, secrets surface, resentment builds, remorse haunts, love grows.
Greft starts dreaming of a new life, free from the constricting rules of Trehaug. He harasses Thymara, insisting that she must choose a mate among the male keepers, like he has chosen Jerd. But Thymara isn't ready to commit, even to Tats: she's too afraid of becoming pregnant in this hostile environment, and a burden for the other keepers.
Leftrin is soon caught up by the shameful deal he made with a Chalcedean merchant to provide him with dragon parts. He has to find a way to get rid of this threat to the expedition, and to his new relationship.
Until disaster strikes, scattering crew, hunters, keepers and dragons, shuffling and jumbling their lives.
From then on, I literally couldn't put the book down. I was already enjoying reading about the characters' evolution, especially about Alise and Sedric slowing getting used to their life away from Bingtown and its comfort, away from Hest, but this event rearranged the story into a new pattern and gave it a wonderful kick. I'm thrilled to know that Robin Hobb is currently working on a sequel!
Previous works (Assassin, Liveship, Tawny Man) have dealt on a huge scale with politics, though seen through the eyes of individuals caught up in "history". Comparisons with the current fave Game of Thrones are inevitable, though the two have very different styles. Her ability to tie the politics of a nation to the skills, abilities, foibles and characters of individuals and show how one person's contribution can change the fates of many is unsurpassed in skill, complexity and sympathy. Hobb understands people - I would say the only failing of those former works were her lack of queer characters, and female characters who rejected societal norms (oh there were many amazingly strong, courageous and rebellious men and women, but they all desired families and hetero-normative relationships in the end).
Dragon chronicles seem to be to be Hobb challenging this in herself. Here the scope is amazingly limited - a group of scarce more than 30 characters stuck on a long journey. The saga writer's equivalent of the one-set play. The river journey setting prevents claustrophobia of scene, whilst allowing for a slow 'plot' that depends entirely on character development.
And what characters - queer relationships and the personal politics of human 'mating' patterns are closely examined, among her usual themes of loyalty, honesty and humanity. Hobb's scope has shrunk, but her depth grows constantly. In essence, these books bite to the very heart of what makes us human, and why. Contrasting the humans to the dragons, subtly, brings out much and more.
This is a writer at the peak of her powers, and this is genuine literature. For those who wanted an adventure story - it is not exciting, it is absorbing. Fantasy literature for intelligent grown-ups. And feminists :)
Most Recent Customer Reviews
These books are too good and I find myself so gripped I don't want to do anything else! I will be reading lots more Robin Hobb when I don't have more pressing matters to attend... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Marie
Another exciting adventure with Robin Hobb's dragons. Her imagination knows no bounds and takes the reader to her world of fantasy. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Dorothy
Just completely loved this whole series - characters very interesting, plot engaging.
The dragons and their development over the four episodes were totally engrossing - Robin... Read more
Well yeah, good enough but too short, seems like they crammed it all in, slightly disappointedPublished 2 months ago by bertie
This was a replacement for the one I had originally which was borrowed and lost! love Robin Hobb and read her books over when in the mood. Read morePublished 2 months ago by goldenfd