“Years ago, the magnificent dragon queen Tintaglia forged a bargain with the inhabitants of the treacherous Rain Wilds. In exchange for her protection against enemy invaders, the humans promised to protect an unhatched brood of dragons. But when the dragons emerged as weak and misshapen hatchlings unable to fend for themselves, dragonkind seemed doomed to extinction. When even Tintaglia deserted the crippled young dragons, the Rain Wilders abandoned the burden of caring for the destructive and ravenous creatures. They were banished to a dangerous and grueling journey in search of their ancient dragon homeland, the lost city of Kelsingra, accompanied by a band of young and inexperienced human keepers, also deemed damaged and disposable.
Against all odds they have found the fabled city, yet myriad challenges remain. Sintara, Mercor, Heeby, Relpda, and the rest of the dragons struggle to find their wings—and their independence. Their human escorts, too, must contend with unsettling upheaval: Thymara, Tats, Rapskal, Sedric, and the others are transforming into Elderlings—true dragon companions. As old rules give way to new alliances, secret fears, and adult desires, the keepers must redefine their lives as they attempt to reawaken Kelsingra to its former glory. But gaps in the dragons’ memories leave them all struggling to recover the magic that once animated the great city.
As the young Elderlings risk “memory walking” in the city’s hidden history, an outside threat is growing. The Duke of Chalced has dispatched his forces to the Rain Wilds with a compelling mission: slaughter the dragons in an attempt to stave off his own demise. The tide of history is about to turn on a life-and-death battle that will ultimately decide the dragons’ fate. If they win, the regal serpents will rule the world once more. And if they lose, they will vanish from the world forever.”
This was the final book in this series and set in a world I love. However this book underwhelmed me. I don’t think I got as engaged with the characters as with other books by Robin Hobb. The Liveship Traders and The Assasin series are two of my all time favourites. This is set in the same world and links to the those series, but something was missing for me. It makes me sad, but I can’t love every book one author writes.
I enjoyed the story in the sense it was nice to see the future of the world I enjoyed in other books. I liked the journey of the dragons and the possibilities this holds. I liked how the worlds combined, but I feel it missed the magic somehow. At one point I was convinced we would get to see a certain character again, but that did not happen. My favourite bit was when a horrible character got eaten by a dragon. Then two of my favourite characters from a previous series also popped up, which was a nice surprise.
The book and therefore the series ended very quickly. It was a bit anticlimactic for me. I liked that the dragons took steps to becoming what they once were, but it seemed happen all of a sudden.
The narrator was also not the best. I definitely had very different voices in my head from reading the first couple of books. I find the voice of the narrator does present how I see the characters and sometimes the two don’t mix.
I’m sad I didn’t fall in love with this series, but it wouldn’t stop me reading another series set in the same world if Robin Hobb writes another.