Read Dragon Haven by Robin Hobb Online


Centuries had passed since dragons last roamed the war-torn world of the Rain Wild River. But as peace once again settled upon the land, a lost generation of sea serpents--ancient, half-starved, and weary—returned to cocoon, certain that they would be reborn as the beautiful and powerful dragons of legend. But their arduous journey exacted a heavy toll, and the proud serpeCenturies had passed since dragons last roamed the war-torn world of the Rain Wild River. But as peace once again settled upon the land, a lost generation of sea serpents--ancient, half-starved, and weary—returned to cocoon, certain that they would be reborn as the beautiful and powerful dragons of legend. But their arduous journey exacted a heavy toll, and the proud serpents emerged as sickly, half-formed beasts, unable to fly or hunt . . . or thrive.For years now they have been trapped on a swampy riverbank between forest and river, hungry and barely alive, reliant on humans to provide for them.With their survival at stake, fifteen dragons—among them the wise golden Mercor, the haughty and dazzling silver-blue queen Sintara, and the delicate copper beauty Relpda—have set off on a dangerous trek into the unknown, up the Rain Wild River, in hopes of rediscovering the ancient Elderling city of Kelsingra, the lost haven for dragons and Elderlings alike.The dragons are accompanied by a disparate group of human keepers, rejects from Rain Wild society. They, too, yearn to find Kelsingra and create a home of their own, one in which they may make their own rules and decide their own fate. But is Kelsingra real or merely a fragment of a glorified past buried deep in the dragons' shared memories? No map exists to guide them, and the noble creatures find their ancient recollections of little use in a land changed by generations of flooding and seismic chaos.As the dragons, the humans—including the strong and defiant Rain Wild girl Thymara; the wealthy dragon scholar and Trader's wife, Alise; and her companion, the urbane Sedric—and their magical supply barge, captained by the gruff Leftrin, forge their way ever deeper into uncharted wilderness, human and beast alike discover they are changing in mysterious and dangerous ways. While the bonds between them solidify, starvation, flashfloods, and predators will imperil them all. But dragons and humans soon learn that the most savage threats come from within their own company . . . and not all of them may survive....

Title : Dragon Haven
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780061931413
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 508 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Dragon Haven Reviews

  • Bookdragon Sean
    2019-04-15 16:07

    Only Robin Hobb could write a prologue from the point of view of a dragon, and make it equal parts terrifying and hilarious.It's all about the dragons! Her dragons remind me of cats; they are vain, greedy and dangerous when roused. They have a selfish sense of entitlement that often leaves others running after them, but they’re also capable of great kindness and love. Well, sometimes. How much of it is genuine and how much of it a ploy is difficult to say. They are not mere beasts that reign fire on the enemy: they have personality and character too.They’re trying to find a home and a place to grow. Their ancient memories are driving them to salvation. It is the only place they can go and discover exactly what it means to be a dragon, which, depending on which dragon you ask, means very different things. Some just wish to hunt and mate, some wish to live and thrive beside humans. And one of them wishes to gather up all the lost knowledge of his kind. The wisest though know understand that humans are their servants, but this does not mean they have to be subservient to the dragons. They can cooperate and develop a mutual respect.The Elderlings have returned?Each dragon has a human who reflects their own temperament. The more time they spend with each other the more they begin to resemble each other, as the dragon magic begins to shape the human’s forms to reflect their own. They will become something else entirely, something that has not been around for a very long time and something we have heard much of in the Fitz and Fool trilogies. I much prefer the characters, and the plot, in this series than those of The Liveship Traders. They are more varied, less rigid, and have much more room for character development in the future. Alise Finbrook is a particular favourite of mine. She reminds me somewhat of a morally strict, somewhat rigid, Victorian middle class woman has had her first taste of freedom and realised how trapped she has been in her own life. Her character arc promises much more in the future. Hopefully, she will leave her stupid husband and enjoy her own life for a change. Sedric has come a long way too. He is arrogant and self-involved, but he is beginning to see that there is much more to life than his own vanity. Indeed, the vanity of the dragons comes first! He is in a very stressful situation, and dealing with it will test the limits of his character. Somehow, I think he’ll pull through and do what he must. So this was very strong second instalment in the series, all the loose ends were tied up from theThe Dragon Keeper and the future is looking even more uncertain. No doubt there’s much more yet to come in this series.

  • Hanne
    2019-03-23 13:17

    In the past 12 months or so, I finished more than 10 books by Robin Hobb. She’s brilliant, but writing so many raving reviews gets pretty boring and repetitive, so I got a little creative again: My blacked out review poem:It is lovely, like the light [shining] through.It just got brighter and [more] beautiful.Don't worry, you'll fly.This review was inspired by what Austin Kleon does in his book ‘Newspaper Blackout'. Only he spends more time on it than I did so (unlike me) he manages to get grammatically correct sentences. Sorry about that :)EDIT: For those worry, no books were tortured during the making of this review. It happened on a copy of that page.

  • Kaitlin
    2019-03-25 13:31

    So this book is number #2 in the Rain Wild series and it's the continuation of the story of Thymara, Alise, Leftrin and their magical Dragon creatures they're accompanying. We get to see that the story picks up straight after the ending of the first one, meaning you're straight back into the action. What I liked about this book was that there did seems to be a lot more action scenes and some real moments of stress and worry for our cast of characters.So, this book follows our intrepid adventurers as they have ventured away from their homes in the search of new, exciting place. We see that their journey is fraught with problems, right from the start point, and we see that not only is there a poisonous and scary river, a lack of food and plotting, but also the group itself has some widening cracks and fractures causing lots of moments of tension. I think that the strengths of this book lie in the fact that Hobb is able to create some characters who are not all good, bad or black and white. It's easy to make a character and say this is a good character, you must like and root for them, but Hobb doesn't do that. She manages to make people who feel real. They frustrate you, they make you angry, they make you annoyed and they make mistakes. Equally she knows how to recover a character and turn someone 'bad' into someone good by giving them redeemable moments and actions. We see a lot of both in this book, and it was certainly worth her taking the time to develop all of the major human and dragon characters. In terms of the plot it focuses mostly on the journey they are undertaking. I felt that the pacing for this one and the plot for this one were probably more intense than the previous just because we face more 'unknown' and I really liked getting to follow along for this story. Another element I do want to mention in this review is the letters between the Birdkeepers - Eric and Detozi - which are at the end of each chapter. I found myself getting drawn deeper and deeper into their storylines and what they were talking about and it was all very exciting by the end :)Finally I have to say that Hobb knows how to make me connect with the characters in this series (and all of her books). She's fabulous at not only creating characters, but making you want them to succeed or fail. We connect so easily that within a mere 500ish pages she had me change opinion on a few of the characters multiple times and cry alongside the happy and sad moments! (yes, there were some tears!)On the whole, another stellar job from Hobb and another 4* read. I really enjoyed this and actually read almost all of it in one day so that's pretty impressive. A solid book and a series I am definitely looking forward to continuing with. There's a lot of potential here and I can't wait to see it blossom!

  • Mili
    2019-04-10 13:24

    4.5 stars~ this one continues where part one finished. Soo basically still very much lovable! Flows beautifully~ I loooove Thymara~ And Alise her choices and growth in character is what she deserved alllll along! I feel like she will grow into this confident strong woman and finally do what she loves deeply to the chore: explore and see the world! There were more setbacks in this book that actually made it quite suspenseful at some point. And the growth of the dragons is magical :DA small thing that bothered me: (view spoiler)[Sedric also falling in love. NOT that he doesnt deserve it or with the person but the fact that alongside Alise...he also conveniently finds someone on that oh so filled boat ahum =p Its lovely really but it felt a bit forced into the plot. Otherwise...what...he wouldnt change and grow and feel lovable? Anyway for me it felt a bit off, but I did like the romance blossoming.(hide spoiler)]

  • David Sven
    2019-03-30 14:18

    A satisfying conclusion to the story arc started in book one. The dragon's and their keeper's journey to Kelsingra continues, the storytelling masterfully driven by excellent characterization. Like many of Hobb's books I've read so far the event driven climaxes tend to happen well before the end and then things wind down to the finish. (view spoiler)[ this book I'd say the big climaxing event is the flash flood (hide spoiler)] Fortunately, most of the climaxes tend to centre around changes in the relationships between characters rather than specific events. The dramatic tension lies in the secrets and revelations and interpersonal conflicts. There aren't many authors that can make the seemingly mundane seem so alive. To be fair - things brewing since book one come to a head this book, spilling over into violence. And of course the setting helps as well - dragons and humans relying on each other, working together, to complete a quest that will change them all.We get a lot of revelations this book specifically concerning the nature of the relationship between the Elderlings and Dragons, and why Rain Wilders are so heavily marked. There are assumptions I had made from the Liveships Trilogy that were turned on their head - like (view spoiler)[The Rain Wilders deformities were a result of proximity to dragon places and dragon "things" such as wizardwood - where previously I was led to believe that it was the river that poisoned the inhabitants. Also, that the deformities themselves were actually part of a process of becoming an Elderling - but unguided the changes were negative and abortive (hide spoiler)].The ship Tarman also held some pretty cool surprises. (view spoiler)[ Leftrin used his wizardwood to make legs and webbed feet and a tail for the ship. (hide spoiler)]Book one and two were written as a single story by Hobb but published as two books. While book one seemed to just end randomly in the middle of the story I'm happy to say the end of this book was a proper ending - but with plenty of scope for more stories to come - which has me eager to continue on with the remaining two books in the Rainwild Chronicles. I'm giving this a solid....4 stars

  • Helene Jeppesen
    2019-04-02 12:09

    Another fine fantasy novel by Robin Hobb! While I enjoyed this sequel, I did feel like it dragged in some parts and not much was happening. Still, I loved being back with all of the characters, and I loved seeing how they developed and where this story was going. Robin Hobb's stories are very easily read even though they are 500-page-novels. I think that's because her stories are very accesible, in the sense that they are easy to follow and very captivating. I'm especially fond of the way this series follows different perspectives because it brings a nice flow to the story and keeps it interesting, and I'm definitely looking forward to picking up the third book in this series in a short while :)

  • Claudia
    2019-03-29 12:22

    I don’t know what happened with the first part, but this 2nd one is perfect; I loved it to pieces.The journey toward Kelsingra continues, we get a lot of action, a lot of answers and we finally learned what happened to Maulkin. Plus, we got Tarman, which turns out to be an unexpected ship.And the bunch of lousy characters from the 1st part suffered a complete transformation here, which was a relief.Too many details will spoil the pleasure of reading it, so I will just say that it was one of the loveliest stories with dragons read so far.

  • Rob
    2019-03-26 17:13

    Executive Summary: An improvement over The Dragon Keeper. With everything set the story is just able to move forward at a brisker pace. This is really Dragon Keeper part 2 from what I understand and it feels like it. If you enjoyed the first one, you'll likely enjoy this at least as much if not more. If you found the first book a let down, you may find you gave up on the story too soon.Full ReviewAfter completing The Dragon Keeper, I really wanted to jump right into this one. However with other obligations and coordinating reading schedules it had to wait a little bit.I enjoyed the first book, but this one was a step up for me. The characters and the main plot are set. The journey is on. Now we can just sit back and see what happens. Ms. Hobb has always had a slow plot development to me. For some reason it just works with me in a way other authors don't. This is really the second half of The Dragon Keeper.The way Ms. Hobb writes animals has always impressed me. Nighteyes felt like a real wolf to me. Her cats were especially good too. She's done it again here with Dragons.Of course no one knows what a dragon would be like, but she still seems to paint a picture that just feels right to me. Intelligent and arrogant. Only these aren't full dragons. Their development was stunted. Their memories aren't complete. They can't fly and have to rely on humans to help care for them.There is a lot of development of both the dragons and their keepers in this book, as well as the supporting barge and crew. They face the first real adversity of their journey to find an ancient lost city of the Elderlings where the dragons may be able to thrive.At its heart, this is a story about relationships. Sure there are dragons, but as intelligent creatures that are able to communicate with their keepers, their relationships play as large of a role (if not a larger one) than the interpersonal relationships of the humans.Her characters are once again superb. I don't think I despise fictional characters quite so much as some of the ones Ms. Hobb has written. While none of these are quite as despicable as Regal or as frustrating as Malta, they are memorable.The way Ms. Hobb writes, I feel like I could just fall right into her books and stay there. Not that I'd really want to see the acid Rain Wild River. But I'm all for checking out ancient cities with magical wonders and remnants of dragons.I can’t wait to jump into City of Dragons!

  • Jessica
    2019-04-03 13:25

    Originally posted at eternal escapist.3.5 Stars For me, this book was kind of like an inverted Oreo; it had a dry, brittle middle sandwiched by a great beginning and ending.Dragon Haven picks up where Dragon Keeperleft off, with the Tarman, the dragons, and the keepers still trucking up the Rain Wild River in search of Kelsingra, the so-called dragon haven.The first book spent a lot of time building up to its ending, so the first quarter of Dragon Haven was actually more action-packed than the whole of the first book.HOWEVER, after that initial period of excitement, things slowed down...a lot. It felt a bit like a soap opera; every single POV character was dealing with romantic issues. I can handle romance in books, but when it's just chapter after chapter of will they/won't they for every single character, it gets to be a bit much. There were also some very bizarre and somewhat creepy dynamics between the keepers that really irked me. So, I didn't enjoy the middle of the book very much at all. Had I not been so blown away by the last few chapters, I probably would have given Dragon Haven 3 stars. However, the ending was so good and exciting, with one revelation after the next, that I almost (but not quite) forgot about the dry bits in the middle. See? Oreo.Like Dragon Keeper, the highlight of this book was also the character development. Whenever I read one of Robin Hobb's books, I know that if there's a character I hate, she'll most likely end up making me fall in love with them by the end of the series. Dragon Haven was no exception. In addition, not only did the human characters develop, but the dragons did as well! I loved seeing how the relationships between the dragons and their keepers strengthened, and how each side benefited from that relationship.In all, Dragon Haven was definitely one of the weakest Realm of the Elderlings books I've read so far. That being said, Robin Hobb is such a phenomenal writer that even her weaker books are equivalent to the best books written by many other authors, so it was still a pretty good read.

  • Michelle Morrell
    2019-03-30 17:05

    Basically the second half of Dragon Keeper, this volume satisfied all the questions and dangling threads in typical Robin Hobb fashion ... wonderfully. And kudos for the (finally) accurate and accepting view of same-sex relationships.

  • Loederkoningin
    2019-04-01 10:19

    Guess who’s back?Hobb is back! Well, at least so it may appear to those who – like me - just couldn’t plow their way through her Soldier’s Son trilogy. Although the Rain Wilds Chronicles started out a little slow and unremarkable, I was confident that Hobb would not disappoint in the books to come. She is, after all, one of those authors who just like to take their time, sweet time in order to fabricate a compelling world and story. And I like that! It makes the reading experience so much richer, than being thrown into a road runner-ish story especially designed for broken down attention spans...etc. In Hobb terms this is not a 5 star book. Compared to her Farseer and Liveship Trader trilogies, Dragon Haven is a solid 4 star book. However, I’ve generously given lesser written books 4 stars based solely on whether I thought they were gripping or intriguing enough.. hence my dilemma.hum.. Am I taking Goodreads too seriously?In Dragon Haven a company of malformed dragons, their keeper misfits, the captain of a liveship (livebarge), unhappily wed Bingtown lady and Elderling expert Alise and her chaperone Sedric take off to find the magnificent Elderling city Kelsingra. A city so marvelous that even the forgetful dragons have not entirely forgotten, although it might be buried or otherwise completely destroyed.. The group moves deep into the Rain Wilds, a harsh place for both humans and ground bound dragons. Slowly, but steadily they make progress, but the dragons are threatened not only by the unfriendly environment, but also from within the group. And some do not even seem fit to survive..Alise is one of Hobb’s most fleshed out characters. But again, in my eyes she can't be compared to those fierce heroines from the Liveship Trader trilogy; Althea and Malta. As kindhearted as she may be. Luckily we still have Sedric. Now I don’t think this might some as a spoiler to anyone (I know I figured this thing out right from the start), but goddammit how awesome it is to read about a perfectly normal... (view spoiler)[ gay character! Nothing 'looky what we have here' blown out of proportion, nothing fancy, just a your gay-next-door character, including a few tender MM-scenes. True, even two men bringing sexy back(hide spoiler)].....can’t make up for one evil Kennit, but it’s not like Alise and Leftrin make the most exciting couple, now is it? Yes, in spoilt dandy Sedric I think, Hobb’s gift for creating multilayered realistic personalities, comes out best. Thymara in the meantime, one of the Rain Wilds outcasts, struggles not only with the creepy and possibly fatal physical changes she and the other keepers undergo, she also has a hard time turning down the males in the company. She knows that someone as heavily touched by the Rain Wilds as she is should not have lived at all. Mating is unthinkable, forbidden. Or is it?All in all, a good follow up on Dragon Keeper. I wonder what Hobb has in store for all of them...but since I refuse to buy book three in hardcover, it’ll prove to be a long and frustrating wait. Maybe sad little me should re-read the Liveship Trader books for the umpteenth time?

  • Lisa
    2019-03-25 10:06

    Full Review at Tenacious Reader: continue to be intrigued with the Rain Wilds, but I will confess If I was absolutely forced to rank all of the books, this is my least favorite of the series. And within this series, this particular book I think may be my least favorite. But, I still found it impossible to put down, and my least favorite book by one of my favorite authors is still a book worth reading.There was actually a lot to love in this book. While you may have had an idea of why Rain Wilders are marked and the history of Elderlings, Hobb reveals so much more in this book, and much of it is likely not what you expect. Dragons and Elderlings are explored and explained in much clearer detail really giving the reader a much clearer view and understanding of this wonderful world Hobb has created.I think my largest problem with this book was my frustration with the level of Alise’s naivety. Like, I seriously cringed at how clueless she was at times as to her husband Sedric’s preferences. Conversations where it was clear she was the only one not in the know and how gullible she was definitely irked me. I felt like her character was supposed to be so intelligent and insightful. This aspect of her personality just left me wanting to shake her so she could “wake up” and see what was so blatantly right in front of her. But the good news is, she does start to catch on, and in the end, I felt no cause to cringe. It was just painful getting there. I think some of this is also a testament to Hobb’s characters and the readers connection to them. For me to care that much about a character learning the truth, to the point where I physically cringe, can actually be a testament to how into the book I am (or maybe I am stretching to lighten the negative comment because really, this is another fantastic series, and all of Hobb’s books are worth reading.)Another positive with this book was seeing the developing relationship between the young traders that left on the expedition in Dragon Keeper, and the dragon’s to which they were assigned. Really the entire community, set out on their own without the existing laws and expectations in place, was a great way to explore ideas and relationships.Overall, I continue to stand by my recommendation that everyone should at least give Hobb’s books a try. The are the most emotionally engaging and addictive books within the fantasy genre to me, and with some great world building as well! Highly recommend, like all her other books.

  • Duffy Pratt
    2019-04-06 17:15

    It's rare that I care much about how a book ends. This book set up its situations well. I liked the characters and thought them interesting. Hobb had set the stage for some good dramatic conflict. And then, one by one, the conflicts fizzled. The worst, in my opinion, was nothing more than a sort of deus ex machina. This one left the conflict in place, without any sort of resolution at all. Despite the end, I did enjoy the ride for the course of these two books. And if she decides to return to the Rain Wilds, or to Kelsingra, I will be happy to come along for the ride. The writing here was not as good as in her first person books (Fitz and the Soldier Son books), but was probably a bit better than in the Liveship books. In general, I'm growing a little bit tired of the shifting POV technique which seems to be the norm in fantasy these days. It tends to lead to a bit of redundancy, and I think it encourages the writer to be a little bit too lazy: build to a cliffhanger and then shift POVs, then backtrack and whine for a while, rinse and repeat. Hobb doesn't exploit this tendency as badly as others (cough, Martin, cough), but its still there and its starting to annoy me as a general matter.If you liked the Liveship books, I think these two Rain Wild books are also worth reading. Even now, though, despite what I've read, I can't help but feel that there is another book coming in this series, or at least an offshoot to continue parts of this story.

  • Gelis
    2019-04-05 13:26

    Another good one from Robin Hobb, who does a decent job in presenting a new perspective on her Rainwild / farseer world. It is very interesting to take a walk with these stunted dragons along a poisonous river and see them grow inside and outside just like their "keepers". The dragons, esp. Sintara are egocentric and strange -with the exception of wise Mercor and maybe Kalo they are adolescents. To see Sedric reformed- was not surprising after the Malta incident- hated her at the start and she grew on me. The nicer sides of Sedric were obvious, he was just led astray by a bad love interest... What I loved about the book was that she dared to introduce the topic of hidden homosexuality and coming out- very rare in fantasy esp. high fantasy and much appreciated by me for her courage and the very sensitive way she treated it. What I missed was being surprised, all that was hinted at in The dragon keeper was delivered as foreseen. It is a very good book for fans who want to see more of the world and the dragons, but Robin Hobb in her peek gave a bit more knucklebiting suspense, emotional devastation and tough developments.

  • Wol
    2019-04-16 17:29

    I remember reading a while back that Hobb had intended the Rain Wilds Chronicles to be two large books rather than four smaller ones. For that reason, I decided to read the first two books and treat them as one for a review. It's a definite change - one of the more common complaints I see about Hobb's writing is her "slow burn" pacing. I think it's fair to say that here her pacing is practically glacial, and if you find that frustrating you are going to have a difficult time here. Much like some GRRM fans had issues with AFFC after the whirlwind of ASoS, I suspect some readers will have difficulty appreciating Rain Wilds after the emotional rollercoaster ride of Fool's Fate. And that's a real shame, because the first two entries in Rain Wilds have a great deal to offer. As always, there is some stellar characterization. One of Hobb's strengths is in her ability to write flawed, sometimes frustrating characters. This series is no exception. There is a realistic and sometimes uncomfortable portrayal of domestic and sexual abuse, including an unflinching look at the behavior of a malignant narcissist. The thoughts and feelings of the characters affected by this abuse and their tendency to place blame at their own door rings very true. But there is hope here, too. The dragons are... well... assholes. Some readers may have difficulty with this - it is my own personal feeling that I don't need characters to be likeable just so long as they are interesting, but YMMV. With that said, Relpda is awesome and I'll fight anyone who says otherwise. I love the insight into how the various dragons think; we learn much more about the relationship between Dragons and Elderlings as the Dragons begin to regain their memories, and here we come to the real strength of the Rain Wilds. World building. Again here, I'd have to compare it to AFFC. We learn about the little people, the outcasts of this world and some of the more unsavory customs of the Rain Wilds and Bingtown traders, all through the eyes of the people they cast aside. We begin to fill in the gaps of the lost Elderling cities, of memory stone and other mysteries that tantalized us in the Liveship/Fitz novels. Through Alise we are able to begin piecing things together, and though the story is good, for me it has become secondary to my delight in watching the threads of Hobb's tapestry taking shape. I'm finding it fascinating. It may not be for everyone, but it's definitely up my alley.

  • Allison
    2019-04-12 18:11

    I thoroughly enjoyed this second novel in the Rain Wild Chronicles. Everything that was set up in the first book comes to a head in Dragon Haven - everything relating to the expedition, anyway. The focus completely narrows to the journey up the river, and for a while we are isolated from the rest of the world and concerns outside of the group. Meanwhile, the small company is starting to show signs of stress and conflict, and nature is doing all it can to prevent their survival.The travel and survival aspect makes this move much more compared to the previous book, even though it's still heavily about characters more than action. People are changing, views are shifting and being challenged, and some are seeing things more clearly, less naively. I totally enjoyed the experience, and was satisfied with the way each conflict was escalated and resolved. I stayed up way too late a couple of nights reading, and was excited to continue to the next book (which I found out did not continue the momentum, but that's a different review).I would still say this series is not for Fantasy fans who prefer fast-moving action, or who have not already read and loved Hobb's previous works. But I am enjoying being in this world, soaking in the atmosphere, and experiencing a journey into the unknown with a small group of outcasts who are expected to fail, and with dragons who are slowly discovering how to become what they were meant to be.

  • Robert Beveridge
    2019-04-01 11:13

    Robin Hobb, Dragon Haven (Eos, 2010)Every time I read a Robin Hobb trilogy, it happens. Somewhere along the way, I get sucked into it, and I wind up forgoing such niceties as food and sleep in order to finish whatever book of hers I happen to be in the middle of. It took a little longer than usual with the Rain Wilds Chronicles, but about seventy-five pages into Dragon Haven, it clicked. I finished the rest of the book in a couple of marathon sessions and am now pacing my cage while I wait for the next volume to come out. (Because yes, I do think, despite promotional materials, there will be a third book here.)When we last left our tangle of malformed dragons, outcast keepers, and taggers-along from Bingtown, they were out of Cassarick, but other than that, little had changed. Alise Finbok was still moping around after the captain and feeling there wasn't anything she could do about it, while the captain was busy worrying about who the mole in his crew was. Some of the dragons were getting along with their keepers, while others barely tolerated one another. And the keepers were little different amongst themselves. The hunters kept away from everyone else. And the keepers of the birds passed their notes in the chapter beginnings with no one the wiser. Well, all that changes. Most of it, anyway (the bird keepers keep passing notes). As the dragons get closer to Kelsingra, the humans continue to wonder whether the lost city even exists. But all that becomes secondary to survival when a flash flood tears through the party, scattering dragons, keepers, hunters, and ship's crew alike. The bulk of the latter half of the book involves everyone searching for everyone else, in fact, and it's this sort of chaos where Hobb truly excels.It's tough to know what rating to give this book until we know for certain whether there will be a book three in this series. As a stand-alone, it's about as phenomenal as anything else Robin Hobb has written, and if you like her work, you'll like this one well enough; engaging characters, strong plot, great pacing (once she gets warmed up, which always seems to take a while). But if that's really the ending of this particular story arc, I'll end up coming back and docking the book half a star, maybe even a full star. It's a weak ending, and it doesn't really beg a sequel (in the sense that the story could reasonably end here); if the story ends up just petering out where it is rather than giving us more, then the ending drags the whole thing down. I can't believe that's the case, though; Hobb has a history of incredible series endings. I'm reserving judgment and keeping faith until we know for sure. ****

  • Shari (colourmeread)
    2019-04-08 13:15

    Dragon Haven starts right where we left off in Dragon Keeper. As the second half of what was originally meant as one book, this book was more exciting than its first counterpart. As our characters continue their journey, they face harsh realities that come with traveling on the Rain Wild river. There is lack of supplies, brooding desperation, and inevitable confrontations. I've always loved Hobb's skill in writing her characters; there is no black and white or good and evil and how she captures this level of complexity with all of them baffles me. You will root for some and despise others, but no matter how you feel about them, you will care about their fates.One thing that stood out about Dragon Haven is the amount of romance in this novel. I've read a lot of Hobb's books and I'm familiar with her style of writing in this area, so it's not about how she did it, but how often it came up in the story. Everyone suddenly seemed to be pairing off and because I didn't expect it to happen soon and so quickly, I didn't know what to make of it.The last few chapters were definitely my favourite and overall, Dragon Haven is another great book by Hobb. This world is one I never want to leave and I'm excited to see what's next!

  • Mark Halse
    2019-04-11 13:26

    Robin Hobb is quite possibly my favorite author. So, it's no surprise that I absolutely loved this book despite the money grabbing way these books have been chopped up. If book one and two were released as one installment then that book would be a five star read, no questions asked. But because they were awkwardly cut in two I must, in good conscience, deduct brownie points.Greedy nonsense aside, this story is amazing, expounding upon a world that I already loved and creating new and wonderful characters for me to cherish.I've read a few reviews stating that this book is fit for Hobbies alone. I disagree with this opinion. I believe that one could venture into the World of the Elderlings at any point with any series. I think the deciding factor is that the reader must love character driven stories as opposed to plot driven stories because in any Hobb masterpiece the plot takes a backseat to the characters and their development and this is evident in this series as well.DRAGON HAVEN and this series is a wonderful continuation of the Elderlings Series and a must read for HOBBIES. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

  • Phee
    2019-04-11 14:05

    I enjoyed this one so much more than the first one. I've heard some people mention that they were meant to be one book but were published in separate editions for some reason. I think that it would have been better as one big ass book, but who am I. I'm not going to divulge any of the story as I don't want to spoil anything. All I'll say is that this one picks up pretty much where the first one left us. A lot more seemed to happen in this one, there was the expected character development and there was more angst too. Secrets are revealed, some relationships bloom and others shrivel. The characters grow not only in personality but in other ways. Sedric really grew on me in this one. He is the 'Wintrow' character for this series. I really enjoyed his growth. It was nice to understand a little more of Elderlings and ways they were created and also why certain Rain Wilders are more marked than other. One of the main complaints that I had about the first book was that the Dragons read like the serpents did in the Liveship Books. However they are much more fleshed out in this book, they are more distinguishable from each other, which is nice to see. I can't wait to see how this story comes together and links in with the Fitz and the Fool books. Those connections are wonderful to read. It's like a reward for reading so many books when you get a little snippet of information that ties things together. Very satisfying indeed. I couldn't help but mentally hug certain characters when they finally realised how abusive their relationships had been. When they decided that they were worth more than what they thought or had been told that they were worth. Fist pumps all round.My only real complaints about this book are that at times it was quite slow. Not a huge detail, I'm very accustomed to the way that Hobb writes her stories that it isn't a huge gripe. My other complaint and the biggest problem was that it was predictable. Yeah. Every twist and a big reveal that came along I guessed well in advance. I'm not sure if they were well hinted at or if I just know what to look for in these books. But it certainly took away some enjoyment when I saw everything come together just as I thought it would. I'll start the next one either tonight or tomorrow. I'll certainly be done with the Rain Wild Chronicles by the end of next week. The next one is very short by Hobbs standard.

  • Steph // bookplaits
    2019-03-29 12:17

    In three words: dramatic, intense, exciting."'But perhaps it takes a different kind of strength to keep my word when every bone in my body cries out for me to break it.'"Dragon Haven is book two in Robin Hobb's The Rain Wild Chronicles series, and wow, things definitely start getting more exciting in this book. If you've read my review for The Dragon Keeper, you'll know that my biggest issue was its very slow pace (although I still really enjoyed the story because, y'know... it's Hobb, and she's amazing). However, books one and two were originally written as one book, and so Dragon Haven is much more action-packed than the first installment and therefore I loved it more (in spite of one aspect, which I'll touch on later).This book continues on from where The Dragon Keeper ended, with the dragons, their keepers, and the crew of the liveship Tarman still on the search for the dragon city Kelsingra. If there's one thing Hobb is an absolute QUEEN of, it is character development. I loved seeing how the dragons and their keepers developed, and I think we are in for some very interesting times ahead with this bunch! One guy and his dragon in particular gave me serious feels, and when I finished the book, I reread their scenes because they were so precious.Moving on to the parts I didn't like... romance. I'm perfectly fine with romance in books, and Hobb has written romance scenes before, which I had no problem with, but in Dragon Haven, everyone seemed to pair off (or to want to pair off) at once! I was actually really pleased for all the couples, but altogether it was just a bit too much. I'm hoping there is a bit less romance in the last two books...Like in the first book, the chapters in Dragon Haven are interspersed by letters between two birdkeepers, Erek and Detozi, and I really loved how their correspondence was like a 'story within a story'. I think it's a really neat way to kind of show other things that are happening in the world while our characters are journeying towards Kelsingra.The last few chapters of the book were incredibly exciting and I can't wait to see what happens to the characters. As it's Hobb, I'm guessing there'll be a lot of emotions involved!Recommended for: people who want to read an exciting second installment to a fantasy series with fantastic characters.~~~~~Review also posted here.

  • Metaphorosis
    2019-04-10 10:13 4 starsMy mother made sure we always had some kind of dessert or sweets to snack on. At the same time, with two teenage boys in the house, she got a little upset if an afternoon of baking disappeared in under an hour.I finished Dragon Keeper, the prequel to this book, yesterday morning. While it wasn't as good as Hobb's best, I liked it. And when I found two sequels on sale for a few dollars apiece, I picked them up immediately. Now, less than 24 hours later, I've finished Dragon Haven. My mother would be appalled, but it tells you something about the book. I did some other reading yesterday (as well as actually rising from the sofa for a good part of the day), but it's fair to say that reading this book was a major focus; the story is not perfect, but it's very readable.Unlike most of Hobb's trilogies, not a lot has actually happened in the two books. Mostly, it's dragons and their keepers sloshing up the Rain Wilds rivers. The story is about personal interactions, and the development of both the humans and the dragons. It may that latter area that makes this second book read a bit like a young adult novel - most of the characters are relatively immature, and the emotional turbulence they face is largely of the coming of age sort. With dragons.It may also be the reason that Dragon Haven succeeds better than Dragon Keeper. My complaint about that book was that it was disheartening to see fictional struggles about sexuality that we've resolved (to some extent, in some places) in real life. The struggles in this book are also familiar, but some are a type that will never go away so long as young people keep growing into older people. Other issues (e.g., efforts at male dominance over females) disappointed the idealist in me, but that didn't trouble me as much narratively, perhaps because the story is also about an isolated group establishing new rules. Mostly, this is an engaging adventure story with lots of personal interaction to absorb, and quite a few moral dilemmas to consider. The weakest part of the story is in some ways the dragons themselves. I give Hobb credit for making the dragons individuals, and not always very pleasant ones. But she comes very close at times to the stereotypical 'dragon as wise, ancient creature who knows all'. Or rather, since the dragons clearly aren't, to a situation where humans treat them as if they were - willing to live only to serve these beautiful creatures. It's not quite that clear-cut, and some humans do stand up to the dragons, but not as much as I wanted them to. It's an ongoing frustration in the series, and Hobb's narrative explanations aren't very satisfying.The book also wraps a few things up a little too neatly. There's conflict and drama, but also a bit of ex machina that I think could have been handled better. Still, I did read the book in one day, and I'm going on to the next later today.All in all, a solid fantasy book with an intriguing, enjoyable story, and well worth reading.

  • Dara
    2019-04-01 15:09

    Short review: Once again, Robin Hobb knocks it out of the park. Dragon Haven picks up immediately after The Dragon Keeper. The biggest knock on these two books is that they should have been published as one. If Peter F Hamilton can publish 1300 page opuses, why can't Robin?Once again, much of this series is devoted to character development. There's some action and certainly plenty of plot progression but character is most important here. I loved every minute I spent with Thymara, Alise, Leftrin, and Sedric. Hell, I even came to like the dragons a little bit. It's hard to talk about anything that happens in this book because it's all spoilery territory so I'll just say if you like Robin Hobb, read these books. That's all.4 out of 5 stars.

  • Erin
    2019-04-13 13:21

    Nothing whatsoever happens in the first book. Then in this one, I wait for ages and ages for the good stuff to happen (them finding the city), which only happens right at the end and we don't even get to know what happens to them after that. There are really only one or two exciting things that happen in both books.I would be way happier if she reduce both books to one book with a total of 400 pages max, then actually write about the interesting stuff which she never got to at all.I started reading the first book in Borders and decided that when I started liking it, I'd buy it and go home, if I started to really not like it I'd put it down and go home. I got to the end (spent all afternoon there) and still didn't like it... but didn't hate it enough to stop reading.Same thing with the second one.

  • ShariMulluane
    2019-03-27 12:11

    ♦ My Thoughts. This is a series that is signature Robin Hobb. There is sporadic action, a few thrills, chills, catastrophes and plenty of conflict but mainly it is about characters. Each is distinctly individual and while some share common backgrounds, each experienced those backgrounds in vastly different ways. The dragons too are as unique as their keepers. They are arrogant, wise, self-serving, insecure, quick to anger, loving, cruel, affectionate, in a word, complex. Only one really takes center stage, ie we get to ride inside of her head on occasion, but we "see" enough of the rest to get a feel for their personalities.Robin Hobb also uses this story as a platform to explore prejudices of all kinds. There is alot of class bias, and gender bias. You have dragons who believe they are superior to humans (and often each other.) But they are not much different from the wealthy Traders who pretty much look down on everybody and everything. You have former slaves who were promised a place within the Rain Wilds society as "equals." A promise that was well intended but far from kept. You have the Rain Wilders themselves who are "marked" over time by their harsh environment. The more heavily marked they are, the less they are accepted, and sometimes resort to veiling their disfigured faces in an act of self defense. And there is worse. A child who is born already drastically affected is usually killed at birth. There is also sexual bias. Same sex relationships are not considered acceptable behavior among the more elite trader and merchant classes and must be hidden at all cost. Fortunately this doesn't seem to be a huge issue with the so called "outcasts". Funny how that works... And while there are plenty of strong female leads both with and without positions of power, there are still plenty of people who have definite ideas as to what constitutes a woman's "place" in society.The range and complexity of the societies and the characters who live within them makes for a fascinating exploration into human (and dragon) nature.♦ What I Liked. I am hands down, a lover of character-driven fantasy. I've always been fascinated with the why behind how people think, feel, act and react. I want it to be ugly when it needs to be, endearing at times and tragic at others. And I want development. It can be forwards, backwards or even sideways but as long as the characters change in some way, I am happy.Suffice it to say, I am very happy.And the changes are not all internal. All of the main characters are changing physically. Some of the changes are due to environmental factors, some to the rigors of survival, some are induced by the dragons and some are due to the natural process of growing up. And the environment? It goes through some major changes too. No I'm not going to elaborate. That would be "tellin."♦ What I didn't like. Well, it is not so much what I didn't like but more like what I know some people won't like. There is more action than there was in Dragon Keeper but overall the pace is still fairly slow. Now this is both a good and a bad thing depending on how you look at it. For rollicking non-stop action fans, this is a bad thing and you'll likely be bored to tears. For character development loving fans, this is close to perfect. For me it makes little difference. I try to enjoy a book for what it is. If it is a tense, edge of your seat action adventure, I'm all in. If it is a slow journey to nowhere that allows for copious amounts of time inside the characters' heads, I'm all for that too. All depends on the reader's tastes or even mood.I do have one little nitpicking annoyance. I can't for the life of me figure out why this series is labeled Epic Fantasy. It is secondary world and there is magic though I would consider it to be peripheral at best but there is no world wide conflict of good versus evil. There are some bad people who do bad things but only a few. The journey upriver could easily be called epic but it is only part of the story. Plenty of things are going on in other cities and some even in other countries. I am not sure what it is exactly but the personal nature of the stories combined with dragons, liveships, serpents and elderlings makes it feel closer to High Fantasy to me. Sadly I guess high fantasy conjures up visions of tired old tropes so you rarely see it used anymore. Doesn't really matter much in the overall scheme of things. A good book is a good book, no matter how you "label" it. It just bothers me as a reviewer because I feel like calling it epic fantasy gives readers a misguided impression of what to expect.♦ Conclusion. If you read my last review (you DID read it right?) you might recall that I called that book a series of journeys. Well this one is a series of changes. Some are gradual, some are drastic and some are even fatal. Everything changes. The characters, the dragons, the scenery and even the odds of survival are changed, several times and in some fascinating ways. Because I am such a fierce lover of deeply emotional character driven fantasy, this rates as another 5 stars for me. It is going on my reread shelf to be savored time and time again.Originally posted @ Dragons, Heroes and Wizards

  • Deshana Desai
    2019-04-12 11:27

    Review upcoming. This book has established itself as one of my all-time-favourites now.

  • Jonathan
    2019-04-01 14:32

    Spectacular - the world building and character development in Book One really came together for an action packed 500+ pages of pure Hobb.

  • Paul
    2019-03-25 13:31

    11th book into The Realm of the Elderlings Series and Robin Hobb is still fascinating me by revealing the world that she has built. Hobb's focus is always the characters and using what the characters go through to illuminate the world building to the reader. Dragon Haven is no different as we learn so much about Elderlings and their relationships with dragons. Because these books are so late in the series it is hard to talk about this book in any real detail. It is basically the journey of a dozen or so dragons with some Rain Wilds teenagers to find the fabled lost city of Kelsingra. The plot of this book and the previous book are really simple but the character's relationships with each other and their circumstances drive the story forward. Yes, there is a lot more relationship, love, and YA like romance in these books than in all of her other books. Almost all of the characters in the Rain Wild Chronicles are either trying to be in a relationship or have to deal with others trying to be in a relationship with them. Because of that, these books have a much different feel to them than her previous books. They are like The Liveship Trader books but without the seafaring and a lot more Maltas. This is not to say that these aren't as good or they are bad, they just have a different feel to them. I still enjoy them because Hobb writes characters I grow to care about. I will always recommend you read her books in order and not skip anything. For me, these books are about filling in the past and learning about the world long ago that impacts the current age. The mosaic that Hobb is putting together is fantastic. I would be very curious to know if she is adding to the world building as she goes or she already had everything planned out from the beginning. I think that my favorite part of this book was an older female character basically giving a sex education talk to the young girls. It was a dramatic scene but it was done in a way that was humorous as well. I feel that The Rain Wild Chronicles is the most progressive of Hobb's writing. There are multiple gay characters and she uses these adolescents to touch on subjects found in many YA reads. You can definitely tell that the culture and generation she wrote these in are much different than when she wrote the Farseer books. I personally find the idea that 15 years apart, that the two series within her larger series, can be so different when dealing with adolescents and reflect the times that she wrote the books. Anyway, a good second book, and I'm looking forward to an even better third and fourth book. 4/517/25 Possible Score3 - Plot4 - Characters4 - World Building3 - Writing Style3 - Heart & Mind Aspect

  • Sad Sunday
    2019-03-24 15:09

    Every year I tend to give my personal, "The Mos Dramatic S*** Of The Year", award (last year's winner - After). I mostly give it to unreadable crazy mess with tons of sex, kids, stupid to the Moon characters, and most importantly... Wait for it... Drama! And well, if you have questions - yes, it's a "bad" award. But today I decided that it doesn't have to be. Drama can be nailed. (And I almost forget how to write positive reviews). And R.Hobb nails it pretty well. She managed to find just the perfect balance of drama. In a way it's a slow book, not much happens except traveling and daily lives of the crew, but passions are bubbling, evil plans are conceived, characters stand their ground, romance blooms, dragons get stronger, scenery changes, ship gets stubborn, some die, some live - loads of stuff happening. It's not drama out of nothing, but it helps plot, and evolution of characters. It's a great engine that kept me hooked (I wasn't that hooked in a long time...). The other thing R.Hobb nails are characters. I can only admire the fact that she wasn't afraid of feminist and gay themes in her book (it was released in 2010, so we can say she was ahead of the her time). These two are often avoided in fantasy, so, yay Hobb! It's not patronizing or preaching, but very natural to the overall story. Also, I would like to add Captain Leftrin to my "Possible Book Boyfriends" lists. He is an awesome man. Yay to that too. I am not a big fan of big series, but I think I will finish this one.

  • Ole Imsen
    2019-03-23 12:23

    Unsurprisingly this book follows directly on from the events of "The Dragon Keeper". It does start off with a info-dump prologue that at first glance looks like a unnecessary read if you come directly from the previous book. But the prologue not only recaps the events of book one, Hobb has hidden some interesting new info in it, so it is an essential read. This book takes place wholly away from the civilization of the Rain Wilds, and follows the journey of the dragons and their keepers further into the wilds. Not only the physical wilds of the Rain Wild River, but also the wild landscape of the human psyche. Parts of the book looks at the dynamics of a group of individuals who are cut off from civilization. Some of what happens reminded me of "Lord of the Flies", and i would not be surprised if Hobb has drawn some of her inspiration from William Golding's novel. There is a bit more action here than in "The Dragon Keeper", and the overall pace of events is stepped up a bit. There are still passages that are largely devoted to character building, and that is certainly still a large part of the story, but there is quite a few events happening in the physical world too. It quickly becomes clear that there actually was a bit more happening in book one than was told to the reader. This was mostly very natural, as it was hidden from the point of view characters at the time. One development did make me feel a bit cheated as I felt the character should have noticed earlier, or at the very least had a feeling of something going on. One thing that there is certainly more of here than in book one is romance. Not that it is in any way turned into a "Romantic Fantasy", but there is a bit of "action" in the book. This comes naturally with the story, and at least one of the developing relationships has been telegraphed since early in the previous book. Robin Hobb also manages to sneak in some surprises on the romance front, and one of them comes as such a surprise that I doubt anyone will catch on before the reveal. What was the most interesting part of the book for me was finding out about the relationship between humans, dragons and elderlings. This is revealed in more detail here than in any of Hobbs previous works. This relationship between three races is something that has been part of Robin Hobb's fantasy world since "The Farseer Trilogy" and to see what looks like most of the mysteries revealed is very satisfying. Having mentioned earlier in this review that there is more action here than in "The Dragon Keeper", I feel the need to say that it is by no means an action oriented adventure. But as with the previous volume in "The Rain Wild Chronicles" I felt that the slow pace fitted the story. I've read several reports that these two books were first intended as one, and I have no trouble believing that. It might be possible to read this book as a standalone, but I would definitely recommend you read these to books as a split volume and begin with the first one. The ending of this book, and as far as I know "The Rain Wild Chronicles", was a bit of a letdown. Not because it was a badly written ending, or that it didn't finish the story. It did however leave me with a lack of closure that almost screams for a follow up. I hope it comes in the form of another trilogy from Robin Hobb, and that she's working on it now, because I want to read it as soon as possible.