Review: The Voyage of the Basilisk (A Memoir by Lady Trent #3)

Book: The Voyage of the Basilisk by Marie Brennan
Publisher: Tor Books, 2015
Genre: Fantasy, Kick-Ass-Women
Rating: HalfHeart
Source + Date Read: ARC + Finished March 2015
Recommend: Fantasy and dragon lovers, harken forth!
Book Pro’s: A seriously solid 3rd installment, much better than the third.
Book Con’s: It’s a tad long but it has few cons.

Summary: Devoted readers of Lady Trent’s earlier memoirs, A Natural History of Dragons and The Tropic of Serpents, may believe themselves already acquainted with the particulars of her historic voyage aboard the Royal Survey Ship Basilisk, but the true story of that illuminating, harrowing, and scandalous journey has never been revealed—until now. Six years after her perilous exploits in Eriga, Isabella embarks on her most ambitious expedition yet: a two-year trip around the world to study all manner of dragons in every place they might be found. From feathered serpents sunning themselves in the ruins of a fallen civilization to the mighty sea serpents of the tropics, these creatures are a source of both endless fascination and frequent peril. Accompanying her is not only her young son, Jake, but a chivalrous foreign archaeologist whose interests converge with Isabella’s in ways both professional and personal.
More Information: GoodReads
Further reading: Review of #1, Review of #2

I’ve done reviews for previous installments in this series but I must rave about this one. It’s amazing. It had all of the magic and wander that the first had without being bogged down in petty plot details. It’s strong for one simple reasons: the dragons. There are a lot of dragons! The first had a multitude, the second hardly any and the author picked right back up and wrote about a whole new range here. Small fire serpents, large sea dragons, flying beasts, everything!

It’s also a significant installment due to its movement of the plot. I felt like the second one lagged quite a bit, and this book had pockets or quiet moments of dragging, but it was well-paced and well-written. The plot was moved quite a bit and we learn of the origins of certain creatures and objects in that particular world. I was so captivated during certain parts I had to gasp and sit up straight, I was so entranced! What I appreciated the most was not only did it situate the world better within a sort of fantastical timeline, but the protagonist’s personal life moved a long as well. She became much more well-rounded and the plot, dragons and character were interwoven skillfully.


I see what you did there Marie Brennan, and I approve.


I know that when I like a book I tend to be all gung-ho about it, but this is an amazing book and if you love dragons, fantasy or anything that has a Victorian-era academic feel, with the most amazingly strong women, then this book is for you. Boom. Go read it.

E-Book Vs Physical:

I had this portion in a previous review but I have to include it again. I read this via eARC on NetGalley. The formatting was amazing but on an eReader you don’t get the full scale of the book and the illustrations. Indeed, I didn’t have many of the included illustrations and had to use my imagination completely, instead of having the guidance of the physical illustrations. All in all, get the physical copy. It’s well worth the money.



About Claire (BWB)

It's Claire (aka Quirky) from Bitches With Books, an online book blog that serves up a healthy dose of book reviews, lists + literary madness.
This entry was posted in Book Reviews, SFF and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Review: The Voyage of the Basilisk (A Memoir by Lady Trent #3)

  1. Pingback: 2015 Reading Challenges: Quarterly Check-In, November (Claire) | Bitches With Books

  2. Pingback: 2015 Reading Challenges: Quarterly Check-In, August (Claire) | Bitches With Books

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