Sequel to Dragon Bones. Was woken this morning by the thud of this package on the doormat: but what a perfect excuse to go back to bed with a large cup of coffee and read!
This is much darker than the previous book, and it's very much to Briggs' credit that she can handle episodes of rape, torture and slavery in a way that gives them weight, without destroying the balance of the overall plot. She's not explicit, and she doesn't focus on her characters' suffering, but it isn't denied either.
Dragon Blood doesn't feel like a direct sequel to the earlier book: it features most of the same characters, but the plot is driven by new elements. Some of the loose ends from the previous novel are tied up: more potential continuation-points are introduced.
I still find the prose annoyingly lacking: needs a better proof-reader or editor ("a millenia", "a narrow grove between A and B", etc). Suspect that I'd feel the same about a lot of the books I read as a teenager -- that ability to turn a blind eye to the actual text, in favour of the content. I'm less forgiving nowadays, but the content of these novels kept my irritation in check!
reposted here from LJ in order to keep all my reviews in one place