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Crucible of Gold: A Novel of Temeraire [Kindle Edition]

Naomi Novik
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (159 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $7.99
Kindle Price: $5.99
You Save: $2.00 (25%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

“An absorbing adventure.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Former Aerial Corps captain Will Laurence and his faithful dragon, Temeraire, have been put out to pasture in Australia—and it seems their part in the war has ended just when they are needed most. The French have invaded Spain, forged an alliance with Africa’s powerful Tswana empire, and brought revolution to Brazil. With Britain’s last desperate hope of defeating Napoleon in peril, the government that sidelined Laurence swiftly offers to reinstate him, convinced that he’s the best man to enter the fray and negotiate peace. So the pair embark for Brazil, only to meet with a string of unmitigated disasters that forces them to make an unexpected landing in the hostile territory of the Incan empire. With the success of the mission balanced on a razor’s edge, an old enemy appears and threatens to tip the scales toward ruin. Yet even in the midst of disaster, opportunity may lurk—for one bold enough to grasp it.
“Captivating . . . compelling reading . . . [an] action-packed narrative [with] lively, uniquely drawn characters and intriguing takes on history.”—

Includes a preview of the next book in the Temeraire series, Blood of Tyrants.

Editorial Reviews


Praise for Naomi Novik and her novels of Temeraire
“Novik’s influences run the gamut from Jane Austen to Patrick O’Brian, with a side trip through Anne McCaffrey. Her books are completely involving and probably addictive, their central conceit explored in clever detail with a great deal of wit and historical insight.”—San Francisco Chronicle
“These are beautifully written novels: not only fresh, original, and fast-paced, but full of wonderful characters with real heart.”—Peter Jackson
“A gripping adventure full of rich detail and the impossible wonder of gilded fantasy.”—Entertainment Weekly
“A new writer is soaring on the wings of a dragon.”—The New York Times
“[This is] a glorious series whose future status as a genre classic is now assured.”—SF Reviews

About the Author

Naomi Novik is the acclaimed author of His Majesty’s Dragon, Throne of Jade, Black Powder War, Empire of Ivory, Victory of Eagles, and Tongues of Serpents, the first six volumes of the Temeraire series, recently optioned by Peter Jackson, the Academy Award–winning director of the Lord of the Rings trilogy. In 2007, Novik received the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer at the World Science Fiction Convention. A history buff with a particular interest in the Napoleonic era, Novik studied English literature at Brown University, then did graduate work in computer science at Columbia University before leaving to participate in the design and development of the computer game Neverwinter Nights: Shadows of Undrentide. She is also the author of the graphic novel Will Supervillains Be on the Final? Novik lives in New York City with her family and six computers.

Product Details

  • File Size: 3514 KB
  • Print Length: 386 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0345522877
  • Publisher: Del Rey (March 6, 2012)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0055PGWAW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #61,433 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
41 of 46 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
If you are new to the Temeraire series stop: go purchase In His Majesty's Service which is the first three books in the series in a collection for you. Those are the best of the series by far, and worth every penny.

This is the kind of series which you cannot jump into at the end and really enjoy- there are so many references to prior books that this one will make little sense at times for those new to the series.

That said, for fans of the series, I imagine your questions are: is it as good as the first three books? Or as bad as the last two? The answer is neither. While not a return to the stellar first three, it is much improved over the last two which had many fans worried for the future of the franchise. Especially after the lowest average reviewed book of the series being the last one, Novik had a lot on the line. Another book like Tongues of Serpents: A Novel of Temeraire (Temeraire Series) would probably kill the series for most fans.

Fortunately, Novic scored with a solid return to form. In many ways this reminds me of Empire of Ivory (Temeraire, Book 4) which is a good thing. More action, more plot development and a bunch of well executed twists and turns- I would strongly suggest avoiding spoilers at all costs, as your enjoyment is likely to enhanced by your virtue. And at the end, the plot is set up well for the next book and I for one am now looking forward to it. Recommended for fans of the series. Everyone else, go buy the first three books. Now! Trust me!
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25 of 32 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I won't be reading any more of these books March 7, 2012
By LizB
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Unfortunately authors will stay with a series too long, and that's what's happened to the Temeraire series. The first three books were great; the next two books were pretty good; the next to last book was mediocre. This one is dreadful. Novik has run out of inspiration here. Most of the people and dragons have turned flat, whiny, and/or negative. You don't want to be with these characters. Even Temeraire seems less interesting.

The plot rambles on across continents, with some exciting moments but plenty of tedium, too, especially in the second half. Throughout the book the dragons seem to be very concerned about what they're eating. (I'm not kidding.) This tells you something about the quality of the story. Is there a point to all this that engages our imagination and emotions? I don't think so.

I won't be reading any more books in this series. As far as I'm concerned, it's done. The ending to this book is contrived and inconclusive. Readers are supposed to hang on and buy the next book. No, thanks.
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19 of 24 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Decent enough, though not memorable February 10, 2012
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is book 7 of the Tremeraire series, so if you've made it this far, you're very familiar with the characters and the setting, and you enjoy both.

Starting with book 4 ("Empire of Ivory,") the Tremeraire books have been travelogues, with each new novel exploring a new location and populating it with dragons. Here, it's the Inca and Peru. Despite the setting, we don't really learn much about Incan culture. Rather, Crucible of Gold's Peru is largely about the culture of the dragons, which isn't terribly complex and largely colored by the death of much of the human population due to European diseases of Smallpox and Measles, which is the one aspect of the book that mirrors actual history.

It's entertaining enough, since a lot more happens than in Book 6 ("Tongue of Serpents.") I found myself enjoying the numerous passages told with Tremeraire's narrative voice, which is somewhat childish and pre-occupied with visible wealth and food, but still charming.

Ultimately, it's still episodic. The book abruptly leaves the current conflict between Peru and Brazil unresolved in a very unsatisfying way in order to provide a hook for the next book. It was enjoyable reading along the way, but I was left with the impression that Novik intends to string along the war between Britain and Napoleon forever, never really resolving anything, so she can continue to write novels in the same background.
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31 of 41 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Demonstrating again that she has become one of the best prose stylists in fantasy fiction, Naomi Novik's "Crucible of Gold" is one of the most compelling chapters in her fantasy and alternate history "Temeraire" series. Prior comparisons with Patrick O'Brian are definitely most apt here, in her mesmerizing accounts of Pacific tropical isles and South American rain forests, that rank easily alongside those depicted in O'Brian's Aubrey/Maturin series. Equally commendable is her extensive description of Incan society and culture, which figure prominently in "Crucible of Gold", the 7th novel in the critically acclaimed, quite popular, "Temeraire" series. Though I admire the late Anne McCaffrey's work, including the "Dragonriders of Pern" series, that fine oeuvre is being surpassed by Naomi Novik's, since she has displayed consistently, a higher literary standard in each of her "Temeraire" novels. Without question, Novik is a writer worthy of comparison not only with McCaffrey, but also, with the likes of Neil Gaiman and Michael Swanwick; her latest novel brilliantly reaffirms that.

Restored unexpectedly to his former rank and seniority in His Britannic Majesty's Aerial Corps, Captain Laurence, Temeraire and their friends - both human and dragon - are compelled to take a hazardous sea voyage to South America, once more escorting diplomat Arthur Hammond, hoping to aid the exiled Portugese royal family in Rio De Janeiro, besieged by both the French and the Southern African Tswana dragonriders (The native people described in "Empire of Ivory", the fourth "Temeraire" novel.).
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Back to the action
So I just finished this book for the 4th time. My measure of a good book is if I can read it multiple times and still enjoy it. Read more
Published 12 days ago by Melinda Willden
5.0 out of 5 stars Great!
Love love love this series!!!
Published 1 month ago by SSWise
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book
Wonderful work of fiction I love that Laurence was given his commission back and they on their way back through lots of adventures probably will get China to join their case... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Preeti
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
The temeraire series is awesome.
Published 1 month ago by twinfish
5.0 out of 5 stars Dr J
A wonderful series. Following a similar course as my other favorite series Jackie Faber also know as Bloody Jack female officer in the Royal Navy.
Published 1 month ago by David f.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
good book
Published 1 month ago by bedouin
5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner
This is yet another terrific offering by Ms. Novik. Her brand of historical/fantastical fiction amazes me. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Capt. Safety
2.0 out of 5 stars To much unnecessary verbiage.
You have to wade through so much useless and repetitive wording that the author seems to deem necessary to the story. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Haggielady
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
An entertaining story, consistent with the books preceding it in the series.
Published 2 months ago by redsnapper
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great Series, can't put it down
Published 3 months ago by A Buyer
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More About the Author

I'm a New Yorker who writes about Napoleonic-era England, China, Istanbul, and, oh yes, dragons. My official website is at, and my livejournal there is the best way to reach me -- I am sporadic about updating and responding to comments because everything else slides when I am on a roll with writing, but I read everything posted there and always love to hear any and all comments from readers.

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Over priced
I agree 100%, not paying 12.99 for a e-book. Did not buy Singh's book either though I love her writing, this is a rip-off price. Could go to Hastings and get it cheaper anyway.
Oct 7, 2011 by Kindle Customer |  See all 8 posts
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