The Rage of Dragons – Book review of a story that’s more the rage of a warrior than the rage of dragons

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Namo Namaha friends. I hope everybody is practicing social distancing and is staying safe from the WuhanCorona virus and its deadly effects?

Now that the entire world has gone into isolation, people are using this time to read more books and engage themselves in their hobbies. But, contrary to the expectations, instead of reading more books I am finding myself distracted by my kids and hubby who are also forced into this home isolation. This group isolation has brought on a massive reading slump and I am hoping I can recover from it as soon as possible. Anybody else facing the same problem?

On that depressing yet hopeful note, let’s move on to the review of The Rage of Dragons novel, shall we?

Book Name – The Rage of Dragons
Author – Evan Winter
Genre – Fantasy fiction
Category – Adult fantasy
Type – Series
Book Number in Series – One
Year of publication – 2019
Goodreads rating – 4.38

Goodreads says this novel is a mashup between The Game of Thrones and The Gladiator. And I agree. Though it’s more of a Gladiator than The Game of Thrones. It doesn’t have the depth of characters or the intrigue present in the Game of thrones. Also, don’t be mislead by the title The Rage of Dragons and assume that dragons have a key role to play in it. Though dragons are central to the story, they are not given the agency that they deserve. They are simply used as props, at least in this book of the series. I am not sure if we’ll see more of them in the forthcoming books of the series or not.

Synopsis

This is a story of Omehis, a race of gifted people, who escape their motherland and invade another land and spend the next 200 years fighting the native population of that land. While the native Xiddians have numbers in their favor, the Omehis have their dragons. The Omehis also have a complicated hierarchy where the gifted and nobles are considered as higher class and the others (the non-gifted who outnumber the gifted) are considered as lessers.

Tau is one such lesser and he knows his fate is the same as the other lessers i.e. either become fodder for the fight with the Xiddians or live the life of a pitiful destitute. But, a terrible & unfortunate event destroys his best-laid plans and changes his course of life forever. Thirsting for an unquenchable vengeance, he becomes a mercenary and killer. Will he get his vengeance? Will he destroy himself in this quest for retribution or will he realize fate has bigger plans for him? forms the crux of the story.

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Ruminations

This book started off really well but after the first trigger point of the story, it was a series of unending fights. The locations, motives, and people changed but the theme was the same. Fighting, fighting and more fighting.

If you are somebody who enjoys action scenes and fights, this book is for you. But, if you are looking for a story, character depth, or even some dragons, then you will be sorely disappointed. The dragons appear only to burn down everything, that’s it. They are not characters in the story they are just mindless animals that are manipulated to destroy.

What appealed to me?

I loved the last part of the novel. Ironic, since I didn’t care for almost 80% of the story. But, the ending clinched it for me. So much so that I am now eagerly looking forward to reading the next book in the series.

I liked Zuri’s and Jayyed’s characters. The only two sane people in the entire story. If I could even remotely care for any characters, it was these two. Tau was also great but my brain disconnected from him whenever he fought and since fighting is all he did in the entire book I couldn’t bring myself to care much for his character. He’s an awesome protagonist though and his character development is one to look out for.

What didn’t appeal to me?

Ok, where should I start? For starters, from the beginning, the attitude of the Omehis left a very bitter taste in my mouth. The Omehis escape their motherland for some reason and invade this foreign land they call Xidda. They were the perpetrators, yet they claimed victimhood. The natives fought for their land and they kept fighting for 200 years and somehow it’s the natives’ fault and not the Omehis. This infuriated me.

Their arrogance, their sense of entitlement. It was all a bit too much and too close to home. Though it’s a fictional story it reeked too much of colonization. The Omehi queen invaded a foreign land and what did she expect? For the natives to just keel over and die?

The following pertinent questions bother me:

  1. Why didn’t the exiled queen beg or bargain for land instead of invading the foreign land and snatching it away from the natives? I could have understood if she had won the war and substantially brought the natives under her control. Instead, her hollow win ensured the continuation of an unnecessary war between the natives and the Omehis for 200 years. What sort of Queen doesn’t use diplomacy? This is a glaring flaw in the story in my opinion.
  2. The story began with a dishonorable and detestable act. The natives who were called savages and heathens were driven off from their own land. Though I swallowed my distaste at the despicable victim card the Omehis played despite them being the perpetrators, I was hoping at some point this injustice and skewed morality will be handled in the course of the story. Nope, no such respite. The story didn’t address the false victimhood of the Omehis nor did it give any scope for them to see the error in their ways. I can only hope this will be addressed in the next books in the series.

Conclusion

To conclude, you will enjoy this book if you like fighting, gore, and action. This story doesn’t have any humor, joy or fun parts. It’s action-packed, fast and dark. It is entertaining for the right audience and unfortunately, I am not one of them.

I wasn’t impressed with the story, characters or even the underlying principles of this novel. But, I thoroughly enjoyed the ending, it gave me hope. Making a reader, who detested 80% of the story, to, in the end, root for that story is a talent worth mentioning. I am still surprised by how much I liked the last part of the book. I am now eagerly looking forward to the next book. I hope it will be better and the natives are treated better in it.

Review, recommendation, and rating

Freebie – book worth reading if it’s received as a freebie or gift

RRKReads rating – Freebie grade – Book worth reading if you are an action fan.

My GoodReads Rating – 3

So, that was my review of The Rage of Dragons. What are your thoughts on the same? How are you coping with isolation? Are you reading more books or are you struggling with a reading slump like me? Share your thoughts in the comments section. I’ll be glad to chat. Till then stay indoors, stay safe from WuhanCoronaVirus, stay blessed and Om Shanti.

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