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The Dragon's Path (The Dagger and the Coin) Paperback – April 7, 2011

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Abraham (the Seasons of War quartet) starts this rich, exciting, and fresh epic fantasy series opener in a fairly standard fashion: an orphaned girl and a once great general escape from a city under siege with the help of a traveling theater troupe. But that's where the clichés end, for Marcus Wester would far rather guard humble caravans than cruel kings, and Cithrin bel Sarcour's loyalty is not to her long-dead noble parents but to the Medean Bank that took her in. Cithrin and Marcus must smuggle the treasury of the lost city of Vanai through a war zone in which every army seeks new sources of funds and every king wants them dead. With a deft and light hand, Abraham questions and explores the fantasy-world assumptions that most authors take for granted, telling an enjoyable and genuinely innovative adventure story along the way. (Apr.)
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A thoroughly engrossing debut novel from a major new fantasist. A poignant human tale of power, heartbreak, and betrayal George R.R. Martin [An] impressive first novel ... The long outcome should be the addition of Daniel Abraham to the pantheon of major fantasy authors LOCUS The Dragon's Path is a tremendous novel and Abraham deftly mixes the classic foundations of the genre with a sophistication expected of him and rarely found in the work of his compatriots A DRIBBLE OF INK --This text refers to the Digital edition.
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Product Details

  • Series: The Dagger and the Coin (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Orbit; 1 edition (April 7, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316080683
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316080682
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.6 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (162 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #73,691 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Daniel lives in New Mexico. He keeps a blog at www.danielabraham.com. He also writes as MLN Hanover and (with Ty Franck) as James S. A. Corey.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

68 of 73 people found the following review helpful By R. Nicholson on April 15, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
"The Dragon's Path" is the first book in 'The Dagger and the Coin' series by Daniel Abraham. The book is 592 pages in length while the Kindle e-edition is a 1861 Kb download.

GENERAL THEME (no spoilers)
The land is rife with changes: national aspirations and personal agendas all combine to lend an air of impending conflict that have been smoldering along for some time. And all it would take to set things off would be a few unexpected incidents to occur at the wrong time and the wrong place...and guess what.

Things I liked...

1.) An interesting story filled with lots of action and intrigue. The tale is told from several different viewpoints. Many of the people have some connection with each other, while some are more remotely associated by way of story (to be linked at a later stage).

2.) Character development...the multi-viewpoint technique Abraham used with his protagonists allowed for a slow seepage of information that, by the end of the novel, gave the reader a fairly good glimpse of the personalities and traits of the individual narrators.

3.) A really good MAP. With easy visualization of the different principalities AND a legend with numbers and corresponding names where major cities and towns were located within the map. The Kindle edition map was expandable and was easily readable, even in its most enlarged form...nice.

4.) Areas of decisive (and often unexpected) actions that have horrendous consequences, but described without the graphic gore and violence so prevalent in many of today's fantasy/adventures. A refreshing change from the norm.

5.) One of those books that got better and more involved as it proceeded towards the finish.

Concerns:
Other than starting a little slowly, none.
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Format: Paperback
Mea culpa: Although I own every volume part of Daniel Abraham's The Long Price Quartet, I have yet to read the first installment. Hence, this would be my first foray into the author's long form works. I absolutely loved Leviathan Wept and Other Stories last summer, and I was thus looking forward to reading the opening chapter in The Dagger and the Coin sequence.

Though certain facets of The Dragon's Path show a lot of promise and potential, I had mixed feelings about the novel as a whole when I reached the last page.

The worldbuilding is at times brilliant, but this aspect also leaves much to be desired in other instances. The entire back story regarding dragons and their fallen empire was utterly fascinating, and I wish we could have learned more about it. The many vestiges of the dragons' civilization definitely added depth to this tale, hinting at countless secrets from the past left to be discovered. Another concept which could have been interesting but turned out to be a failure to launch was the various races. For reasons that remain unexplained, humanity is now split into thriteen different races, all of them born from the Firstblood mold. Problem is, other than disparate physical traits, it appears that humanity, as a whole or sundered in its myriad forms, has no history, mythology, and religion; nothing to give each of the races its identity as a society. So much had been made concerning the thirteen races prior to the book's release that I was persuaded that this would set The Dragon's Path apart from the competition. I was expecting a panoply of diverse cultures, all with their own traditions and beliefs. Sadly, the total absence of depth in that regard -- thus far -- was a definite letdown.
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67 of 81 people found the following review helpful By B. Capossere TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 7, 2011
Format: Paperback
As I've said in my other reviews of his books, I'd place Daniel Abraham's The Long Price Quartet, among the top four or five fantasy series of the past decade. So when his new series, entitled The Dagger and the Coin, was announced, I was more than eager to see what he would do for a follow-up. I was not disappointed. The first book in the series, The Dragon's Path, is one of my favorite reads so far this year and I'll be surprised if it doesn't make it onto my year's best list by the end.

It is set in a world long ago ruled by dragons, who over time created thirteen subspecies of humans to act as specialized slaves, breeding one group with the attributes of warriors and another with traits better suited to underground mining, for instance. With the dragons long gone (though their artifacts such as roads and buildings remain), the humans have forged their own kingdoms, city-states, empires, etc. One such is Antea, whose Severed Throne sits in the capital city of Camnipol. Antea is currently ruled by King Simeon, but the land teeters on the edge of civil war as new ideas threaten the whole idea of fixed nobility and rule by king, leading to factions and rivalries within the court. Dawson Kalliam is an ultraconservative noble who will do all he can to protect his friend the king and the status quo (everybody in their place where they belong), sure in the rightness and, ahem, "nobility" of his position. Along with the group of nobles he enlists to his cause, he is also is helped by his wife Clara, son Jorey, and a houseguard named Coe.
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