Title: His Majesty’s Dragon
Author: Naomi Novak
Published: 2006, by Del Rey
I love dragons, but I can think of quite a few books where dragons either aren’t terribly interesting, or they’re just plain terrible. I have to say, however, that this is probably one of the best dragon books I’ve read, other than Anne McCaffrey’s Dragonriders of Pern.
Note that this book is not for the faint-hearted who just want the latest craze and teeny-bopper English. The novel is set during the Napoleonic wars in England, and it stays very true to the culture of the time, including the formality of the language. Naomi takes history and turns it on its head, introducing dragons into a world just coming into the Industrial Age where nations have learned to breed and ride them as air support for their ground troops and Navy.
While I love history and the alternate history presented by the book, the element that really makes this book stand out is the dragon himself, Tremaine. His curiosity, his eagerness to please his rider, and just his childlike yet intelligent outlook on things makes this a delightful read. The bond between Tremaine and his rider, Lawrence is precious, and I’m glad the writer decided to spend a lot of time in the book developing it. I understand there are a few more books in the series, and I’m definitely going to have to check them out.
If you like dragons, English history, or shows like “Horatio Hornblower”, I’d absolutely recommend this book.