HIS MAJESTY’S DRAGON: Naomi Novik: Ballantine Books: Fantasy: 375 pages
A blend of fantasy and history, this delightful novel is the story of Will Laurence, a British navel captain, during the Napoleonic wars and Temeraire the dragon. Captain Laurence and his crew take over a French frigate on its way back from the Orient and discover in the cargo an unhatched dragon’s egg, but before the ship can make it back to land, the dragon hatches.
Dragons must agree to be harnessed shortly after hatching or they become feral beasts. So when Captain Laurence and Temeraire bond, Laurence agrees to give up command of his ship, become the dragon’s aviator and join His Majesty’s Aerial Corps.
The author does a wonderful job of integrating dragons into this time period. But what kept me turning the pages were the characters especially stuffy yet true-hearted Captain Laurence and eager to please but slightly rebellious Temeraire.