The King is dying, putting the whole Kingdom in an uproar, as Amaury sets his final plans to make a play for the throne in motion. When news of the living dragons reaches his ears, Amaury’s scheme gets even more sinister. If he can paint himself as a hero during these times of strife, who is going to stop him?
Gill and Solene find a few friends who are willing to help. Can the kingdom be saved? And what is to be the fate of the dragons? Everything comes to a head in SERVANT OF THE CROWN, the conclusion to THE DRAGONSLAYER TRILOGY.
If you have been following along, THE DRAGONSLAYER TRILOGY has been an interesting adventure-type fantasy full of genre tropes. It has the quintessential hero-turned sob story-turned hero in Gill, the former Knight of the Silver Circle. There is Solene, mage-in-training with a huge heart who is still learning how to harness her powers. An inexperienced king whose power-hungry top advisor has his hand up his ass in an attempt to take control of the Kingdom. SERVANT OF THE CROWN (Book 3 of the Trilogy and the concluding volume) offers mostly the same as the rest of the Series: a steady storyline, good versus evil, tension in the Kingdom, and DRAGONS.
We will return to the dragons in a minute, but first I want to address the rest of the story. Having been on this journey from beginning to end, I want to tell you that I like the series. It is fun and entertaining, and I have grown to care for the characters. It stirs a sense of adventure, and I find myself actively rooting for the good guys and hating the bad guys. In this sense, there is nothing ground-breaking here. It is simplistic, and in this era of fantasy a series is not going to win awards or be hailed as one of the greats. But it is a good read, and it is well-written.
The most interesting aspect of this series to me are the Dragons. We see many dragon tropes play out here, too: they are ancient and wise and magical, awaking a long slumber. People fear them, but should they? But in THE DRAGONSLAYER TRILOGY they are so much more than the sum of those tropes. I do not want to say too much, but in this Series the dragons are DIFFERENT. The reader gets to learn about their experiences and history and feelings. To me, this took the series from an average story about an old, drunk knight to something worth spending more time with.
Nothing about this book in particular changed my feelings one way or another about the Trilogy. Gill, Solene and Amaury are the mainstays and in constant gridlock with each other. Amaury continues his royal assholeness, while Gill and Solene try to stop him from destroying the Kingdom and killing the dragons. There is a new cast of characters introduced, both for the good and bad of the story. Some of them are right and necessary, while others feel like filler to me. There are a few scenes that play that way for me, also. They do not feel necessary and do not further the story much, but feel more like a way for the characters to pass the time while everyone is waiting for something big to happen. These superfluous characters and scenes did not take away from my enjoyment of the overall story, though.
On the whole, THE DRAGONSLAYER TRILOGY is a good read. It is a solid, fun story that I found to be a good escape. It has its drawbacks (a storyline that is full of plateaus and its climaxes do not quite always hit the mark), but I recommend it for fantasy readers who are looking for a simple story about knights, mages, good versus evil, and, of course, DRAGONS.