[Reading] ➻ The Dragon Waiting By John M. Ford – Saudionline.co.uk

The Dragon Waiting files The Dragon Waiting, read online The Dragon Waiting, free The Dragon Waiting, free The Dragon Waiting, The Dragon Waiting db296a794 Alt Cover For ISBN The Wars Of The Roses Have Put Edward IV On The Throne Of England, Lorenzo De Medici S Court Shines Brilliantly, And Duke Galeazzo Maria Sforza Plots In Milan But This Is A Changed World, And Medieval Europe Is Dominated By The Threat From The Byzantine Empire Sforza, The Vampire Duke, Marshals His Forces For His Long Planned Attack On Florence, And Byzantium Is On The March A Mercenary, The Exiled Heir To The Byzantine Throne, A Young Woman Physician Forced To Flee Florence, And A Welsh Wizard, The Nephew Of Owain Gly Dwr, Seem To Have No Common Goals But Together They Wage An Intrigue Filled Campaign Against The Might Of Byzantium, Striving To Secure The English Throne For Richard, Duke Of Gloucester, And Make Him Richard III


10 thoughts on “The Dragon Waiting

  1. says:

    Rereading this book caused me to clarify some of my muddy thinking with respect to wish fulfillment characters and stories and those that try to present the world as it should be, could be, might be with a little imagination and grace.The very far end of the spectrum is the so called Mary Sue story, wherein the protagonist is the center of the universe just because the narrative voice tells us the protag is a special snowflake Leading off down a different path is the idealized protagonist, which could be termed the Beau Ideal In the hands of a great writer this character serves to show what humans could be, and as such he has a venerable history Not starting with Castiglione s Courtier as I ve seen asserted, but farther back, and at the inspiration of a very strong woman Eleanor of Acquitaine, who worked so hard to wrench the war hungry drive of feudalism into a semblance of the chivalric ideal because she got tired of stinking, sweaty men tromping with filthy boots into her fine rooms, blabbing exclusively of killing unruly barons and damned Saracens, to the exclusion of wit, history, song, and about anything else worth listening to.There s a traceable line of these heroes, particularly in the hands of female authors, stemming from the Pimpernel, up through Peter Wimsey to Crawford of Lymond and those he inspired That Beau Ideal is recognizable through his descendants witty, well, read, courageous, seemingly immoral or amoral, but actually true to his beliefs And he has beliefs, even if it is only in his fellow man.I think of him as a descendent of Eleanor s vision, and in The Dragon Waiting John M Ford gives us the splendid Dimitrios, the anchor to the story, the sign that though the world around the characters seems to be sick with disease, war, greed, ambition, and death, there is grace, even if as elusive as the echo from an unseen choir.


  2. says:

    Wow The Dragon Waiting is hard work I can totally understand why some people disliked it I read it with the Draco Concordans a fan written concordance for the book at my fingertips, all the while conscious that I m gonna have to read it again to understand it all It s a subtle, deeply allusive book, requiring both knowledge of history and other literary texts and skill with interpretation of logical implications and emotional ones I can understand resenting all the work the reader has to do, though for me the need to work is what made me love this book so much.I don t know how to say all the things I think and feel about this book without simply quoting other people The theme that touched me most deeply was that of trauma, and the Byzantine colonialism s comparisons to sexual assault it was very interesting to me that several key characters were Welsh and Scottish, given that theme and real world history I was convinced to read this book by this post, really, which says a lot of what I want to say and in a wondrously unspoiler ish manner, too This is a sneaky, sneaky book a blood soaked medieval fantasy an elegant historical AU a bleak, gritty political thriller a witty Shakespeare fanfic an intricate meta game full of buried jokes about Star Wars and Dracula and a deeply serious and mature story about human damage whether trauma or chronic conditions and how we bear it, about suffering and grace Quite possibly, reading that post to begin with is what allowed me to love this book so much Going in unprepared, I might have given up, which is unfortunate.


  3. says:

    Off to a 5 star start with this World Fantasy Award winner that I d somehow missed Publisher compares it to Mary Stewart s Crystal Cave Not a bad call Dragon sprawls from Ireland to Constantinople in the waning years of the Byzantine Eastern Roman Empire, which fell to the Turks in 1453, in OTL Well, it s not waning here see Jo Walton s review Ford says he tried hard to get the history right, up to the point of divergence, before adding the fantastic elements wizards and vampires, so far Then he quotes Nennius, whoever he was ah, a Welsh monk of the 9th century I yield to him who knows of these things than I do Heh p.98 Dr Cecily Vittori is saving Lorenzo de Medici s life You know you re in good hands when you tear up over events six centuries ago And when you slow down your reading, so you won t finish the book too soon.It s always a little startling when the words in a row turn into people you care about Author Ford was a little in love with Dr Cecily, I think, though he gave her some very hard knocks.The review to read is Jo Walton s,https www.tor.com 2009 07 30 subtle It s a brilliantly written, absorbing book with great characters it s hard to put down once it gets going and it s laugh aloud funny in places This is John M Ford s World Fantasy Award winning masterpieceThe characters are wonderful, all the way through The book gives you time to get to know them and then uses them in precise ways, so you feel they re doing exactly what they would do This is true even of minor characters It also uses Arthurian motifs to underscore the story, without ever getting tangled up in them What a good book this is, what an enjoyable read, and how incredibly clever I love it Almost everyone who s read this book remarks on the need to reread it, to really understand what Ford was doing For sure there are pages where I was wondering what the hell was going on On the future reread list Amazingly dense and well crafted book 5 stars almost certainly his masterpiece RIP Mr Ford 1957 2006 He died way too young.


  4. says:

    This book makes me feel like an idiot I love it to pieces.I m not sure how both of these things can be true simultaneously, but they are I have read it twice now with only the vaguest understanding of the Wars of the Roses I suspect it would help to know something about them , been very very confused, and yet I love it I love the characters and the clever twisty worldbuilding and Greco Roman polytheism hanging out in the 1400s and the Mithras cult and, okay, I did a lot better at the parts of this novel where I actually knew something about something Basically, Christianity failed to really take hold in this world, and Byzantium has most of Europe The main characters are busily trying to put Richard III on the throne and stop the spread of the Byzantine Empire Henry Tudor is, of course, being helped out by them This only really comes clear in the latter half of the book the beginning has some espionage and murder mysteries and all sorts of things that really have very little to do with England Mostly I like the beginning better Also there are vampires One of the main characters is a vampire He s pretty awesome Actually, all four of them are pretty awesome Characterization is one of the book s strengths Which is good, because you need something to hang onto as it dives through the plot Seriously, there s a fan made concordance to the novel, and if any book needs it, this one does Maybe next time I will remember to read it with the concordance webpage open in another window, because I didn t manage to this time either I know I am doing a bad job communicating why you should read this, but if you want alt history fantasy that is really, really, really intelligent, you need to find a copy of this.


  5. says:

    I think I did The Dragon Waiting a disservice by beginning it immediately after finishing Dunnett s Lymond Chronicles, which continued to engage my brain and kept me from devoting valuable brain cells to Ford s fascinating alternate history In an inn in the Swiss Alps, four people form an alliance to fight against the Byzantine Empire, which in this world never went into decline and now controls most of Europe, save for England and the small buffer state of France These characters Cynthia, a Florentine physician Dimitrios, a Byzantine mercenary Hywel, a Welsh wizard and Gregory, a German vampire eventually end up in England, where they join forces with Richard, Duke of Gloucester, who will become Richard III.I liked Ford s world very much With the addition of magic, the differences from our history made sense, and the way he slowly revealed information was masterful no big info dumps, just bits and pieces which coalesced into a big picture For instance, it takes two hundred pages before we find out what happened to Christianity, which is only a small sect in Ford s pagan, pantheistic world formed to a great extent by the emperor we call Julian the Apostate, who was apparently far successful in this version of history.The characters were vividly drawn, so much so that I really wanted to learn about the four protagonists than I did, and the historical personages convincing even Richard, about whom I have read a lot and so am picky about Though as frequently when reading alternate history novels, I kept wondering how the same people as in our history could be produced by a world that s so different from ours However, Ford wove the historical and non historical characters together well enough that I was usually at least distracted from that issue I did occasionally feel that I wasn t quite getting what was going on and was very glad for my knowledge of English history of that period, which really helped , but that s just as likely my fault as Ford s my brain having been not quite detached from Dunnett yet I m very much looking forward to rereading The Dragon Waiting sometime, as I think it s clearly a book which I ll get out of the second time through one of the signs of a Good Book, in my estimation.


  6. says:

    At times The Dragon Waiting reminded me of The Lymond Chronicles, as it features very complicated spy machinations with few concessions to the reader unfamiliar with the period in question There is no omniscient smartarse like Lymond for events to revolve around, though Instead, magic and vampires I found the pacing initially rather a challenge, as the four main characters are introduced separately at length then the plot accelerates very rapidly once they re thrown together Ford also used the Lymond Chronicles conceit of letting you guess which main characters are present in disguise when the scene shifts Once a third of the way through, I was hooked by the plot and invested in the characters a wizard, a vampire, a doctor, and a mercenary who form a close alliance, or perhaps fellowship is a better word They get deeply involved with the dramatic machinations of the English monarchy, in an alternate 15th century.Although I enjoyed the thrilling set pieces and plot twists, the greatest joy of the novel in my view is the little world building details As Christianity hasn t taken hold in Europe, Dante s masterwork is called the Commedie Uomo , the Roman gods are invoked when swearing, and London has a magnificent Pantheon rather than cathedrals I d probably appreciate it even with greater knowledge of the period The specifics of magic and vampirism are also very cleverly and elegantly presented The uses to which magic is put, as well as its overlap with medicine, are unusual and thought provoking The dragon of the title is the most interesting twist on the concept that I think I ve ever seen in fantasy view spoiler It s a physical manifestation of Welsh nationalist sentiment, formed of soldiers and kept together with magic infused propaganda A supercharged battle formation, essentially hide spoiler


  7. says:

    This is something of a genre crossing novel It falls under sword sorcery and Alternative History If you know the history of 15th Century Western Europe especially England than you ll get a kick out of the story I majored in History with a focus on European History.It was fun to see how the author changed many things but kept others AH purists will take offense at how Ford breaks the rules , but I wasn t bothered by it If you aren t very familiar with the late Middle Ages Early Renaissance Ford does a good job explaining his changes in the back It moves along at a brisk pace and the writing is intelligent The story has some depth and pathos to it as well All in all I say give it a try You might like it.


  8. says:

    Perhaps the best way to describe this book is to say that Ford writes with panache His characters are witty, or darkly brooding, or make comments that are full of deep meaning or are elliptical yet foreboding Naturally, the characters have style to match the dialogue One main character is a beautiful young woman whose hair is entirely white in the first chapter she kills a vampire with medical precision the vampire is, as it happens, the Duke of Milan Another is an ageless wizard with one eye who only needs a pair of ravens on his shoulders to be Odin Then there s the German engineer his specialty is artillery who is also a vampire, and the Greco French it makes sense in the context of the book mercenary who is an almost unstoppable killer as well as, possibly, the rightful heir to the Byzantine Empire Even the plot has style, with intrigues piled upon intrigues and wound about with plots and conspiracies, with occasional bracing intervals in which battles are fought, spells are cast, and feats of derring do are performed And there s enough substance to reinforce the style Ford has a solid grasp of the basic mechanisms of suspense and is a dab hand at writing a character who is racked by a secret sorrow in his or her past as pretty much all the important characters here are Further, his alternate history of a pagan Europe dominated by a greedily expansionist Byzantine Empire also there are wizards and vampires is expertly rendered and well thought out, even if it doesn t always seem plausible essentially, Ford starts changing history in the fourth century, and yet expects us to believe that, for instance, the Golden Age of Florence in the fifteenth century occurs in much the same fashion in his universe as it did in real life Coherence is, in fact, Ford s weakness, especially when it comes to the plotting, not all of which really makes sense For instance, at one point Dimitrios, the above mentioned mercenary, goes on a mission to Scotland with a Scottish spy in the employ of the Duke of Gloucester the King of England s younger brother, later Richard III to rescue the King of Scotland s brother, the Duke of Albany, from prison It s never really made clear why the one duke wants to rescue the other but it s done, only it turns out it s all for nothing after all because as soon as they get back to England the spy murders the Duke of Albany and then dies without revealing why Do we every find out the spy s motives Not in the least in fact, Scotland is never mentioned again in the book The episode gives Ford a chance to show off his conception of the court of King James VI and the marginalized position of Christians referred to as Nazarenes or Jeshites in this universe, and of course the whole thing is as stylish as possible, but it seems a bit pointless General comprehensibility is further hindered by the fact that the second half of the story takes place in England during the end of the Wars of the Roses the climax is the Battle of Bosworth Field , which means that every English nobleman we meet is named Edward, Richard, or Henry, and can be referred to by either their given name or the name of their duchy or earldom or even by their last name , making it difficult to keep straight just who is who in the tangle of competing conspiracies Luckily, Ford is a good enough writer to carry you through the occasional rough patches in the plot without you really noticing them, and he manages to infuse a really rather squalid phase of English history with a noble purpose that in real life it certainly didn t deserve And the best part of the book, the first three chapters, don t suffer from any of these flaws all three take place outside of England and occur before the main plot starts, and all three are entirely brilliant.


  9. says:

    This has never been my favorite John M Mike Ford book, but someone on my friends list here just raved about it, and that put it on my re read stack I hadn t looked at it in many years.My complaint when I read it decades ago was that I just didn t want there to be vampires On this reading, I can see why the vampires are important to the worldbuilding, and how fascinatingly different they are from most fictional vampires and I still don t want there to be vampires It would work better for me if there were wizards, and a thriving Byzantine empire, and magic afoot, but no vampires That s my problem, not the author s Now, I would say that it may be the only book I can think of which is simultaneously a tour de force and a mess It s an amazing alternate history with integral fantastical elements Some of the characters are astonishingly well drawn and the historical context is spectacular The setting is the coming to power of Richard III, and the famous incidents in that history, like Clarence drowning in a butt of malmsey and particularly the young princes being murdered in the tower are twisted in absolutely brilliant ways If you know John M Ford s writing, you know that the prose is pyrotechnical I can absolutely see why it won the World Fantasy Award Not to mention that the key female character is a skilled physician who becomes disabled in the course of the book and continues to have very substantial agency, while her disability is never forgotten.But it s a mess because it has too many characters, going in too many directions, with too many plot twists Hywel, who opens the book, is clearly extremely important, but never gets the screen time he deserves after the first chapter we keep having to figure out why people care about him from how they behave The characters form lasting bonds quickly and we don t always know why they care about each other, even though that caring drives the action Read it, absolutely, and appreciate its brilliance And maybe you won t be as aware of its flaws as I am, or as unwilling to accept the vampires.


  10. says:

    Resultado del partido Worldbuilding 4 Trama 1 G nero Narrativa Fant stica.Lo que nos cuenta En una realidad que no ha seguido los mismos derroteros que la nuestra y en el ltimo cuarto del siglo XV, el Imperio Bizantino controla directa o indirectamente los destinos de Europa, en la que aquellas naciones que todav a son independientes, aunque la corona brit nica es muy influyente tambi n en la zona por m s que tenga estados en contra, saben que la amenaza de la expansi n de Bizancio siempre est presente Varios personajes van viendo entremezclados sus destinos, siempre afectados por las decisiones de los bizantinos o las de otros estados frente a ellas Quiere saber m s de este libro, sin spoilers Visite


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