For this review, I read the book “Night of the Dragon,” by Richard A. Knaak. The book is 319 pages long.
The backstories of
games are typically referred to as “lore,”and this book covers a section of lore from the World of Warcraft universe. For a little history, the Warcraft universe first appeared as the real-time strategy game “Warcraft” which was then succeeded by II and III of the same title, and then the MMORPG “World of Warcraft” was released. The lore of this
franchise very broad and covers some twenty plus years of gaming and literal world building by Blizzard Entertainment. Much of the lore is presented in the game, and some of the lore was first presented in print as one of these books. One of the things which has always drawn me to this universe is the amazing imagination of the writers and the interesting characters they have developed. As someone who has played World of Warcraft extensively, I’ve always had an interest in the story behind the game, and It’s great fun being able interact in a 3D game environment with these legendary characters you’ve read about. Because of this interest, I’ve read many of the books concerning the lore behind the Warcraft universe and that interest also drew me to read this book for my review.
Typically in fantasy,
dragons are seen as a force of evil, but in Azeroth, the literal world of Warcraft, they are actually the world’s guardians. These “dragon flights” have the specific colors of red, blue, green, bronze, or black, and each “flight” represents and has power over a force of nature. These are life, magic, dreams, time, and earth, respectively, and they keep order over these forces. In this story we follow Krasus who, as member of the red dragon flight, has the duty of preserving life on Azeroth. Without going too much into more the story of this universe, Krasus’s goal in this novel is to investigate the mountain of Grim Batol which was previously sealed after a group of evildoers was removed. The locals have reported strange occurrences around the mountain, and Krasus is afraid that some new malefactors have taken up residence.
The search must be done with stealth, Krasus considered as he abandoned his seat. This is no mere happenstance. There is something going on that threatens us all; I feel it….
The story tells of his journey to Grim Batol, the familiar faces he sees along the way, and his discovery of what is really going on there.
the reading more about this world I enjoy was entertaining. Knaak has written about the character in this book before, and he was able to keep them true to the personalities he had previously established. In addition, the new character he created in this were believable and enjoyable. The ways in which these characters interact with one another and solve problems is reasonable and even surprising at times, and this lends to the believability of these characters. The world building and description of new places was also great; In addition to making enjoyable characters, Knaak places them in an environment that is easy to picture without having to give the reader too much information.
Even though Knaak
has made believable characters and generally does a good job of placing them in an environment, some of his wording left me a bit confused. At times, he would introduce an idea or description that should have been explained in the same thought, but was not explained until a few sentences later. In other words, sometimes he would plainly talk about an new idea as if it had already been established. This often lead me to believing that I had missed a bit of information explaining what he was talking about which then in turn caused me to re-read whole passages searching for what I thought I had missed. Finally, I would have to give up and suspend disbelief until I stumbled upon the answer a few sentences later. As someone who wants to understand everything as it is given to them, it made me a bit frustrated. It may sound a bit trivial, but this distraction broke up the flow of the reading at times and unfortunately made it feel a bit clunky.
I enjoyed this book and would recommend it not only to those who enjoy the lore of Warcraft, but to anyone who enjoys fantasy in general.