A Natural History of Dragons

A Natural History of Dragons

A Memoir by Lady Trent

Book - 2013
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Isabella, Lady Trent, known as the world's preeminent dragon naturalist, writes her memoir detailing how she sought true love and happiness despite her lamentable eccentricities; and of her thrilling expedition to the perilous mountains of Vystrana, where she made the first of many historic dragon discoveries that would change the world forever.
Publisher: New York : Tor, c2013
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780765331960
Call Number: SF BRENNAN
Characteristics: 334 p. : ill., map ; 22 cm


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Feb 12, 2018

I really like this book's writing style. It goes into great detail without going on and on. The personalities are well depicted and the science of the dragons painted a interesting picture in my mind.

Feb 05, 2018

I picked this up expecting a typical fantasy full of dragons. I was disappointed, but in the end I liked it and read the entire series. It is a memoir that occurs in a fantasy world. Written simply by an elderly victorian woman about her adventures as a young woman overcoming bias against women in science while researching dragons.

AL_KATI Jan 10, 2018

A fun romp through what feels like the Victorian era except with dragons. A great read if you like diary entries and historical fiction blended with the magic of dragons.

LPL_KimberlyL Dec 21, 2017

Lady Isabella Trent is the alt-Victorian version of Jane Goodall - where Goodall is most known for her study of chimps, Lady Trent became famous for her study of DRAGONS. I gobbled up each book in this series one after another. Lady Trent is an A++ heroine, and if you find this first book doesn't have enough dragons or action for you taste, just keep on reading. These books are thoughtful, adventurous, and oh-so-fun. Quite possibly my favorite fantasy series, ever.

DBRL_JulieC Aug 08, 2016

Written like a memoir from the equivalent of the Victorian era, this book reads like a scientific journal on the pursuit of knowledge on dragons. It's a bit of a slow start but well worth the read.

CMLReads_Kristin Apr 11, 2016

Lady Trent has never been a typical woman, being altogether too interested in dragons for social acceptability. In spite of disdain for societal norms, she does an excellent job of manipulating them to end up in a position to be able to head off to Vystrana on dragon studying adventures. The beginning of a unique Victorian-like Gaslamp-like series.

librarylizzard Aug 26, 2015

This reminded me a lot of Elizabeth Peters' Amelia Peabody series (independent woman explorer, set in Egypt). I liked the mix of old fashioned speech and attitudes with the novelty of DRAGONS! There are a few touches I especially liked, such as the "sparklings" - small, dragon-like creatures classified as insects (a classification Lady Trent attempts to disprove) - and the names of places and seasons that conjure images of our world, but that belong to another. Highly recommended for the adventurous reader/listener (I listened to the audio version and was pleasantly surprised by the quality of narration).

KateHillier Jun 23, 2015

As much as I enjoyed this (and enjoy it I did) I couldn't help grasping onto these little references of future events. Tell me more! More, I'm sure we shall get since this is the first book in a series. It is set up as Lady Isabella Trent writing her memoirs and this one chronicles her very beginnings (as in childhood) and her very first expedition.

It's a Victorian travelogue by way of fantasy, except the dragons here are not fantastical. They are working within natural laws and Isabella is out to study everything about them in a world that knows very little about them and expects very little of her. She's a woman who knows her calling early and strives all she can to reach it, even unconsciously when she tries to be more of a 'proper' woman for her time and place.

So we have a great environment, a great heroine, and fab writing. It almost reads like the Victorian travelogues I had to read in undergrad. It feels very authentic and very real. I think we have a winner all around here so pick it up today!

Jun 10, 2014

Loved it. It managed to be slightly old fashioned but still kept me interested. The dragons certainly helped a lot.

forbesrachel Apr 18, 2014

A magnificent new approach to the much overused topic of dragons. Lady Trent recounts her adventures with dragon-kind in the manner of a memoir and instructional guide to academics. She approaches her study though scientific inquiry, seeking to learn about their physiology, behaviour, and habitat. In this world, dragons are not magical creatures, they are real, and bound by the same natural laws that effect us. To remain true to this realism, her abilities are kept to the plausible. Certainly she is bold, but having lived a comfortable life, she is ill-equipped to handle the harshness of her first journey.

The setting, social conventions, and language are similar to Victorian England. By their standards, Lady Trent is quite eccentric, especially when she accompanies her husband and their mutual friend into the backwater Vystrana mountains. Curiosity leads her down many a dangerous path, but even for such a risky pursuit, she remains determined to learn all she can. Her independence, and intelligence provides a fascinating perspective of this world.

Disgruntled villagers, and mysterious occurrences plague this groups attempts to study these wondrous beasts. There is much more than meets the eye though, and because of this Lady Trent's course in life is to be forever changed. A Natural History of Dragons is just the first of her adventures, and as she so often hints at, there is much more to be learned.

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