cover image In the Labyrinth of Drakes: A Memoir by Lady Trent

In the Labyrinth of Drakes: A Memoir by Lady Trent

Marie Brennan. Tor, $25.99 (352p) ISBN 978-0-7653-7763-0

In the solid fourth book of the Lady Trent series (after Voyage of the Basilisk), Lady Isabella Trent looks back at a time when she and long-time friend Tom Wilker are tapped to lead a military-research program to breed dragons. Facing off against sexism, assassins, and her own conflicted feelings, Trent discovers more than she expects. Brennan maintains the parallels to Victorian-era Earth within a fantasy setting, but occasionally strains to show the resemblance, as in the desert portion of her world run by Sheiks who follow an Islamic-style religion. Trent is forced to think closely about her beliefs, the purity of her research, and just what sort of relationship she wants with archaeologist Suhail, who returns here in a different role from past encounters. It’s a time of changes for the main character, but this mix of scientific and fantastic creatures remains in fine form. (Apr.)