The Ring of Five Dragons (The Pearl Saga, #1)

ISBN: 0812572335
ISBN 13: 9780812572339
By: Eric Van Lustbader

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Reader's Thoughts


It's a slow starter, but it's improving now that I'm about a third of the way through it. There is large amount of fictional language and culture and it's rather distracting.

Jacob May

i liked it. i did not think it was hard to understand or follow at all. in fact i found it quite easy actually


So far this book has exceeded my expectations. It blends science and sorcery in an interesting way. It is full of bizarre science-fictiony cliches and pseudo geek-speak, but it also has interesting characters. It, surprisingly, involves some critiques of gender assignments, freedom of choice politics, racism and classism that I was not expecting from a pulp sci-fi-fantasy novel.


"The Ring of Five Dragons" was, simply put, not very good, which is a shame considering I thought the initial premise had great promise. Here, a "primitive", faith and sorcery based people have been conquered by a "civilized", science and technology based people. This is an interesting dynamic. Unfortunately, however, the novel soon becomes far too confusing and nonsensical. There are vague prophesies, unexplained mystical objects, strange travel to other dimensions, "technomancy" whatever the heck that is, random daemons that don't affect the plot (or do they?). Too much, and almost never explained properly.Some of the characterizations also seem haphazard or confused, such as Barrta or Eleana. I will admit the main character, Annon/Riane, was interesting, although why did the former have to somehow inhabit the latter's body?The action sequences were well done; I wish there had been more of them.

Aaron Van Dessel

Odd novel, but very interesting.

Leodel Barrio

A good fantasy novel, a bit slow and dragging at start, but slowly it piques interest.


Not a bad story but it definitely doesn't live up to its potential. Also, there was a rape scene in it in which I felt the perpetrator was being perfunctory... as in, "Well, I wasn't in the mood but you're here and you're a woman of a race we're subjugating, so I guess I have to. You understand." I could never get into the second book, either.


This was a wonderful book. I couldn't put it down. Lustbader paints beautiful universes with realistic characters. The one thing I disliked was that some of the content felt too much like a coming of age story to me. It felt a bit less applicable to my current stage of life.


Good development and great story but unsatisfying ending. (4.5 stars)


I really liked the history and the fantasy elements that mixed with the sci-fi, and I really liked examining the merging of the cultures (and the privilege that is lost for the main character), but this really was hard to read when I first started. The invented language shouldn't have needed a pronunciation guide just to make it readable, and it really shoved the reader in to the names of characters and technology very quickly, without any buffer, so it was incredibly jarring to get around the entire introduction to this conquering race.But once I managed to pick up on the pronunciation (or just disregarded it and pronounced it however looked), and got used to the things the made up language was describing, it became more natural, and I was able to really enjoy the story a lot more. It took me longer than normal to get through, because of the problem of the invented language, but it wasn't too unlike getting through A Clockwork Orange. So maybe not a brilliant masterpiece, but I really enjoyed this, despite the technical weirdness.


I wish that Eric had continued this series, great fiction.

Mounir Bashour

Essentially a copy of the elements and themes in the Dune series but still a good read.

Sam Mager

one of my all time favourite books, took me a while to get used to the complex Vornn language

Carl Alves

The first thing about this novel is that it could be cut in half at a minimum. There was so much unnecessary, extraneous information. The characters did not fell real. The story was convoluted. In the world of the story, the Vornn are the invaders who have taken over the planet inhabited by the Kundalan. Despite this, the Vornn male seem to have no interest in the females of their species, but are overly enthralled with every Kundalan female on the planet. The story line is so convoluted that I can't even succinctly explain it. It does, however, involve a ring and the fate of the planet. The part that really lost me was when the main character, a Vornn male transforms into a Kundalan female. Yeah, exactly. Not to mention that if I see another word with three consecutive same letters, I might have to scream. This book is not worth reading.Carl Alves - author of Two For Eternity.

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