I’m not exactly a Napoleonic Wars buff, but I am a big fan of books from the Regency and later books set during that time. His Majesty’s Dragon, first of a series by Naomi Novik, is about the Napoleonic Wars – but with dragons. If that’s not enough to get you to read the book, read on.

Captain Will Laurence, at the very beginning of this book, is a captain in His Majesty’s Navy, and he has just captured a French ship. In the storage area of the ship is a dragon egg – a huge one that will probably hatch within a week. Unfortunately, if a dragon doesn’t bond with someone immediately after hatching, it will go feral and be moderately useless. The dragon bond isn’t quite so profound and magical as Anne McCaffrey’s, but it does go pretty deep. Also unfortunate for our captain is the fact that they are still probably three weeks away from shore. The crew draws lots on who should have first dibs on controlling/harnessing the dragon, and Carver is chosen (one of the younger sailors).

Unfortunately, again, for the captain, the hatchling dragon doesn’t really like Carver and chooses him, Captain Laurence, instead. (more…)