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Reckoning of Dragons, by Rob May

Reckoning of Dragons: Dragon Killer, Roll the Bones & Sirensbane, by Rob May


Reckoning of Dragons


I enjoyed these stories enough to finish three books and two short stories worth of reading in this milieu, so that has to count for a lot. The story was decent, and Rob May is a skilled writer. The works desperately needed better editing though. Not in the usual sense of crappy typos and disappointing discount ebooks though. Mostly just for the many inconsistencies, and I did have some small nitpicks.

I do love my dragon stories, but we saw surprisingly little of dragons for what I was expecting. Book 3 didn't even have dragons. There was a sea monster that made a cameo, but the 'dragons' were mostly metaphorical. It was a pirate story about drug abuse, which ended up being more interesting than I expected, but it wasn't a dragon tale. I did end up enjoying it though.

I found the climaxes of each three books to be pretty iffy. Each climax included something that just didn't quite make my suspension of disbelief. Book one, Dragon Killer, particularly flipped my “Say what now?” switch, but the rest of the story – and some admittedly great worldbuilding – kept me reading on. I also didn't think that the swapping between third person and then first person flashbacks worked that well. It would trip me up whenever we had a tense change, or I would think the story was current because it's third person only to realize shortly that it's another flashback. It was just clunky and didn't work for me.

The author also hit a few of my personal peeves. I detest when authors (or adults of any kind) consistently refer to grown women as “girls”, and I also hate it when the viewpoint character knows something but the author makes a huge point of NOT letting us know what the character knows. Especially in very clumsy “So Kal shared her plans....[but totally not with you, dear reader]” passages that take forever to finally let us in on the secret. It's a cheap trick, and it rarely works to enhance tension (if that's even what the author was going for). It also seems like the author read some of that advice about adverbs being bad, so he just decided to leave “-ly” off of words whether it's grammatically needed or not. “Things were going pretty bad” instead of “badly”, things like that. I could overlook it in dialogue maybe, but not narrative.

So I guess I'm giving three stars. Better editing would have given this a strong 4, maybe even 5 if the climaxes were strengthened. I did like the books, and the last story was enough to pique my interest if May decides to further tell that particular tale. I'd love to read more. I think my overall 'meh' feeling right now might be attributed to three books and two (long) short stories just being overkill for me personally. If they were stronger, I might have sped through eagerly, but I come away just being glad to finally be done with it all.