Dragon Queen (August 2013 UK)

Dragon Queen is now published in the UK and available as an e-book in the US. In principle it should be available in paper form in the US from Trafalgar Square but I don’t see it listed as of the start of September. Maybe that’s changed.

Dragon Queen lo-res cover

Just as The Black Mausoleum was intended largely as a standalone work in the same universe as The Memory of Flames (how well it worked in that regard is something readers can judge better than I), so Dragon Queen rather ambitiously aims to be a both a new point of entry into the world and, to some extent, a continuation of previous stories. it’s definitely NOT a sequel to The Black Mausoleum. Arguably it’s a sequel to The Order of the Scales for at least one character, to The King’s Assassin for another and to The Adamatine Palace for a third. But it’s as much as anything starting anew[1]. In some ways it’s maybe what The Adamantine Palace would have been if I’d paid considerably more time and effort on the characters and gone to town on the world-building. The result is something that isn’t nearly as fast and furious (except for the last act which partially aims to be Call of Duty: Dragon Warfare) but maybe has a bit more weight to it. Or maybe not. For better or worse it’s as long as The Adamantine Palace and The King of the Crags combined.

For anyone who’s been reading the series so far, here’s a teaser: Remember Bellepheros? Remember how he mysteriously disappears half way through The Adamantine Palace? Not so mysterious any more.

And here’s another one: Remember how the Taiytakei get a tiny fleeting mention in The Thief-Taker’s Apprentice. . .  Guess who’s back!

No prizes, by the way, for guessing who the Dragon Queen is.

Dragon Queen’s first review was from Falcatta Times: “If you love a book that has fantasy elements, political double dealing and proceeds to give manipulate the reader then you really have to read Stephen’s work. The story is dark, it has a cracking pace and when you add into this an author who knows how to manipulate not only the reader but also the characters to showcase both their strengths and their weaknesses all round makes this compulsive reading.”

“If you like dragons and subtle story telling, then this is for you.” Fantasy Book Review

“I loved this book and I felt it was refreshing, action packed, destructive. It contains some great dialogue and a finale any author would be proud of.” Slightly Foxed

“The brooding menace of Diamond Eye builds and builds” Walled Kingdoms

“In short, Dragon Queen is a masterpiece of fantasy and easily Deas’ best work to date.” Fixed on Fantasy

Review in full from Publishers Weekly, 2015: “In prose sometimes as elegant as a gold and glass airship, or as stark as a dragon destroying an entire city, the worlds Deas carefully built in his previous Memories of Flames novels are slowly torn apart. Bellepheros, Grand Master of the alchemists’ Order of the Scales, is kidnapped by Taiytakei slavers so their sea lords can exploit his control over immortal dragons. They need a dragon rider, so they capture the fallen dragon queen Zafir. The Taiytakei have also enslaved Tuuran, former soldier in the Adamantine Order that answered to Zafir, and Berren the Crowntaker, a warrior cast into another’s body through sorcery. Bellepheros is charmed by the compassionate witch Chay-Liang into building a dragon eyrie, Berren seeks to undo his curse with the help of Tuuran’s skills and companionship, and revenge-bent Zafir swears to destroy all Taiytakei everywhere with her dragon, Diamond Eye. All of them race toward a major clash that may appear in future books but is only hinted at in this installment. Deas’s dense tale unfurls a fantastic multiverse where a queen can become a slave but a slave can change worlds.”

[1] Or so it was intended. The various reviews suggest maybe this doesn’t work as well as I’d hoped, and in part because of the uncertainty as to what a reader was *supposed* to know. I hadn’t thought of that.


6 Responses to “Dragon Queen (August 2013 UK)”

  1. paul walsh says:

    Excerpt was great. Very tantalising

  2. Joe Crenshaw says:

    ZAFIR! Or Lystra

  3. Stephen says:

    Wait and see! But there will be an excerpt that gives away who it is before the book comes out. Is is a cheat that the Dragon Queen herself doesn’t appear until pushing fifty thousand words in?

  4. Kristjan says:

    can’t wait!

  5. Julio says:

    Is this book also only available in paperback??

  6. Stephen says:

    At present, yes. There are ongoing discussions about a HB edition.

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