Last Updated on December 30, 2022 by ThoughtsStained
So, The Shadow Dragons is a really, really fun read
As war breaks out in the Archipelago and then World War II strikes out in the Summer Country. Our Caretakers are the only ones who can even attempt to fix it. Especially considering they are a part of the prophecy meant to save them all. I am blown away by the intricacy of the plot. Plus, how everything that is real ties in so well to the fiction created here. To the point where I questioned whether or not our reality isn’t somehow shaped by this fiction. It just ties so well together.
(Spoilers abound because I can’t contain myself)
Publisher: Simon and Schuster | Release Date: October 2009 | Pages: 417
Age Range: Young Adult | Genre: Fantasy | Format: Hardcover | Source: Bought
The Caretakers of the Imaginarium Geographica are at war. The Imperial Cartological Society, led by Richard Burton, have collected all of the doors from the Keep of Time, and are building a new tower in our world at the request of an old enemy: The Winter King’s Shadow. He has a terrible weapon – The Spear of Destiny – that can be used to command the shadows of anyone it touches…including the protectors of the Archipelago, the dragons. With a ship called The Iron Dragon, the Shadow King regains passage to the Archipelago where he uses the power of the Spear and the portals of Time to enlist an unstoppable army of Dragon Shadows. And after the Archipelago falls, he intends to betray the Allies in our world – but not to align himself with the opposition. The Shadow King intends to use the turmoil of WWII to take over BOTH worlds.
All the legendary Caretakers, past and present, come together on a great island in the northermost part of the Archipelago to decide the ultimate fate of the Imaginarium Geographica, as a terrible battle ravages the lands around them. And their only hope lies with a small group of companions who are on the quest for the broken sword Caliburn: the Grail Child Rose Dyson; her mechanical companion, the owl Archie; a mouse with an attitude; a dead Professor of Ancient Literature; and the mythical knight, Don Quixote.
They must sail beyond the ends of the Archipelago in search of the sword, and the only being alive who can repair it: a scholar, who, once upon a time, was called Madoc.
On the Page
Content warnings are written up by me, unless specified. Subject to being an incomplete list, though guided by referencing this list and trying to highlight as many as I can identify.
- My favorite aspect of this book, however, was the Tamerlane House.
That is a house I want to board in, only permanently. Hell, I’d even be content to read a book just about the day-to-day conversations. Especially between the people who live there and the paintings that make it possible. It has to be so fascinating, even if they usually don’t come out, except for extreme emergencies.
- But by far and large, I thought this was the one of the best parts about this book. That, paired with the Trumps, the continuing complexity of time travel, the reassurance of old characters, the journey over The Edge of the World and that last chapter, where we see the beginning threads of a very uneasy alliance between the Caretakers and the Imperial Cartological Society…
Well, I’m really glad I can jump right into The Dragon’s Apprentice, the last book I’ve read in this series and can treat as a reread before I finally read the last two for the first time. It’s going to be a very surreal feeling…