Monday, September 15, 2014

Sanctuary (Dragon Jousters 3) by Mercedes Lackey: Epic Fantasy Book Review

Mulluane | 3:30 PM | 3 Comments so far

Third in the Swashbuckling Fantasy Series

The dragon-boy once known as Vetch has returned to his homeland of Alta to reclaim his birthright, only to discover that Alta is under the thrall of evil Priest-Kings. Gathering troops of dragon riders by his side, Vetch raises an army in the sanctuary of the desert to rid his land of both war and magical domination once and for all.

*Blurb source *Penguin
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Sanctuary (Dragon Jousters #3) by Mercedes Lackey | Epic Fantasy
| Author: Mercedes Lackey
| Genre: Epic Fantasy
| Content: Dragons, Coming of Age, Magic, War
| ISBN-10: 0756403413
| ISBN-13: 9780756403416
| Publisher: DAW; Reprint edition (May 2, 2006)
| Mass Market Paperback: 448 pages
| Cover Artist: Jody A. Lee
| Source: Personal copy
| Rating: 3/5 Stars
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Sanctuary (Dragon Jousters, #3)

♥ Mini Review ♥
Sanctuary. A place of refuge and safety for both dragons and riders. But soon it will become much more. It will become a new home to former residents of both countries, Alta and Tia, as they flee an evil which feeds on death.

Epic Fantasy Book Review by Mulluane

♦ My Thoughts. I guess I am getting less observant in my old(er) age. It took me three books to realize that a formula is being used here. Book one Vetch, later known as Kiron, begins a new life. Book 2, Vetch now Kiron begins a new life. Book three, Kiron begins a new life. But that isn't all. Book one, there is a rescue/escape. Book two there is a rescue/escape. 

Quess what is in book three?

Now normally, this realization would not bother me. I am used to formula writing. David and Leigh Eddings did it. Piers Anthony still does it. However, those books also contained humor in one form or another. Make me laugh and I don't care if the same basic story is told three times, I'm still going to be entertained. Unfortunately, there is little to laugh about in this world. Occasionally there is a playful jab and some of the normal teasing you might find in any group of close companions, but that is a rare occurrence at best. In this case, the predictability made it hard for me to get through the book.

♦ What I Liked. Formatic writing presents me with a unique challenge. How to coach my likes in such a way that it doesn't sound like a repeat of the last two reviews. I could discuss specific content, but I avoid doing that to prevent any accidental spoilers. I could gush over the dragons, but I have already done that too and this book didn't really add anything special to their awesomeness. Suffice it to say that everything I loved about the dragons, characters and relationships in books one and two, I also enjoyed here. And even though the worldbuilding was lackluster compared to the lovingly rendered details of Alta and Tia, there is an interesting aura of mystery about Sanctuary itself.

♦ What I didn't like. Aside from the repetitive nature of the storytelling, this installment suffered from middle book syndrome. The novelty of the dragons has worn off and the events that take place were easy to predict. Kiron doesn't develop appreciatively. If anything he takes a back seat to Ari, the new King. Sanctuary itself isn't very exciting or even interesting. The possible romance between Kiron and Aket-ten stalls and few inroads are made towards reclaiming their homelands. This is a stepping stone book that does little to progress the story, but much in creating a bridge towards book four. Not unusual in a multi-book series, but a disappointment regardless.

And again I found the blurb to be misleading but maybe I just don't see the story in the same light as the author.

♦ Conclusion. This wasn't a great book, but it was still a good one. It was also a necessary installment in the series. Events that take place in and involving Sanctuary are a setup for the conclusion of this story. A conclusion that promises to be truly epic.

♦ Additional Reviews ♦

Series Summary ~ Joust #1 ~ Alta #2 ~ Aerie #4

Ratings, Reviews, Similar Reads, Buy Books, Affiliate Links

Librarything 3.72/5

Amazon: 4.5/5
(38 customer Reviews)

What Should I Read Next?
Kindle: Sanctuary: Joust #3 (Dragon Jousters)

Audible: No

Buy Book: Books-A-Million ~ AbeBooks

Book Depository

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Already read the book? Please share your own opinion!

Epic Fantasy Review of Sanctuary (Dragon Jousters #3) by Mercedes Lackey
Reviewed by Mulluane on October 6 2014
Rating: 3 of 5

Mulluane is a 56-year-old proud grandmother of 4, who is passionate about her pets, blogging, traditional fantasy, and tinkering with webdesign. She is obssesively photo shy but she uses an avatar that accurately represents her dreams. ♥ You can also find her on:

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Old Bat's Belfry - Witty Wacky and Wise Quotes


  1. {Smile} So you didn't love it, but it set up book 4 nicely? I hope book 4 pays off. {SMILE}


    1. Accurate assessment Anne. I didn't hate it either but it was such a drop from the high I rode throughout books one and two that it left me feeling kinda empty of emotion. Book 4 is a whole different book altogether. Will be an interesting review :>)

  2. Oh good. I'm glad this series ended better. One disappointment in four... well, it isn't good, but it could be worse. Especially when the disappointment wasn't the last book. {Smile, wink}

    Anne Elizabeth Baldwin


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