Set amid the turmoil of the Napoleonic wars, Temeraire is a thrilling tale of one of the most dramatic chapters of European history with a brilliant veneer of bold fantasy. The war tearing Europe apart is not fought upon land and sea alone, for battalions also fill the sky. And the fiery death they bring has little to do with gunpowder - it comes from the very guts of the beasts they are flying : Dragons. Weeks out of port at Madeira, a British vessel - the Reliant, commanded by Captain William Laurence - captures a French frigate. Within its hold lies a precious dragon egg. And it's close to hatching. Once harnessed, a young dragon will accept no other master, so when the new-born ignores his chosen rider and approaches the Captain instead, Laurence's life is changed forever.