My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The book started out slow and even a little boring. I almost turned it aside unfinished. However, Robin Hobb is known (to me) for slow beginning and brilliant endings so I persevered.
Once the place markers were set and the characters introduced, the pace picked up and I found myself entertained and thoroughly immersed in this world of dragons.
Thymara, touched by the Rain Wilds and born with claws and scales, should have been disposed of at birth, but her father could not allow that to happen and went against his wife’s wishes by keeping her. Alise, almost an old maid when she finally marries, had already set her mind to the study of dragons and refuses to let her new husband stop her studies. Lethrin, captain of a Live Ship, will do anything for money…and love. These three people are thrown together when the council are persuaded to move the young dragons to a place more suited to their needs. The problem is … none of them are expected to return to civilisation, as it’s a dangerous journey.
The three main characters are complimented by a great cast of secondary characters. Their individual stories are complex and real. This is compounded by external conflicts and danger. In my opinion, what the author lacks in being able to get straight into the story, she makes up for in character and world development.
This is a brilliant book, once you get past the first 50 or so pages. However, the story ended without resolution. Smack bang in the middle of the tension…it finished! To be continued in book 2. As my definition of a story is that it must have a beginning, a middle and an ending this was a great disappointment for me.