Voyage of the Basilisk (#3)

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Devoted readers of Lady Trent’s earlier memoirs, A Natural History of Dragons and The Tropic of Serpents, may believe themselves already acquainted with the particulars of her historic voyage aboard the Royal Survey Ship Basilisk, but the true story of that illuminating, harrowing, and scandalous journey has never been revealed—until now. 

Six years after her perilous exploits in Eriga, Isabella embarks on her most ambitious expedition yet: a two-year trip around the world to study all manner of dragons in every place they might be found. From feathered serpents sunning themselves in the ruins of a fallen civilization to the mighty sea serpents of the tropics, these creatures are a source of both endless fascination and frequent peril. Accompanying her is not only her young son, Jake, but a chivalrous foreign archaeologist whose interests converge with Isabella’s in ways both professional and personal.

Science is, of course, the primary objective of the voyage, but Isabella’s life is rarely so simple. She must cope with storms, shipwrecks, intrigue, and warfare, even as she makes a discovery that offers a revolutionary new insight into the ancient history of dragons.


“Isabella, Lady Trent, narrates her astounding adventures from volume to volume, blending Victorian pastiche and alternate-world fantasy with a distinctly pulp sensibility […] Brennan has constructed both a slow-burn detective story, seeding hints at Isabella’s spearheading a dramatic taxonomic shift within dragon studies as she gathers firsthand data around the world, and a story about a delicately-balanced global ecology in which individual villages might be trying to rid themselves of predatory dragons even as populations elsewhere are being hunted to extinction […] Lady Trent will continue her adventures after VOYAGE OF THE BASILISK; if you love dragons as she does, perhaps now is the time to get acquainted.”


“[VOYAGE OF THE BASILISK is] beautifully worked and thoroughly engrossing. Fans of this charming series won’t be disappointed.”


“Discoveries about the connections between dragons and humans mix with bone-punk technology, and revelations crash like waves in a satisfying conclusion. This is a good pick for lovers of Victorian fiction or those seeking a novel approach to dragons.”

Publishers Weekly

“[Lady Trent] continues her memoirs of dragon hunting in a gently paced but always entertaining adventure. Fans of Patrick O’Brian’s “Aubrey-Maturin” series protagonist, Stephen Maturin, will appreciate Isabella’s devotion to her studies, and those who like the Victorian feel of steampunk might want to try this variation on the theme.”

Library Journal

“VOYAGE OF THE BASILISK combines grand adventure with fascinating insights into the principles behind a world that could almost be our own.”


“The third installment in Lady Trent’s series of reflective memoirs does not disappoint. Isabella’s familiar audacity as she circles the globe in search of unfamiliar dragons – with her son by her side, no less – makes for an enchanting story. And the romantic interest she finds in Suhail is a much welcome addition.”

RT Book Reviews

“Her two-year round-the-world voyage takes her and her young Jake into dangers and predicaments of almost every imaginable sort, all of which make this book one superbly civilized entertainment.”

Barnes & Noble

“Marie Brennan has now written three books in her “Lady Trent” series, and all three feature the unique and powerful voice of Isabella Camherst, which drives stories of adventure in an Earthlike world in the Victorian age […] All are well-written and have the requisite dash of danger, romance and mystery. Brennan’s control of Isabella’s first-person narrative is pitch-perfect.“

San Jose Mercury News

“What I enjoy most about Marie Brennan’s Lady Trent Memoir series is the narrative voice. Isabella Camherst engages in adventures and feats of derring-do that would have H. Rider Haggard clapping his hands in glee, and they are related in the crisp, slightly sardonic tone of a well-educated and witty Victorian gentlewoman. VOYAGE OF THE BASILISK is no exception […] [It] was a thoroughly enjoyable read, and makes me eager for the next book, the In the Labyrinth of the Drakes, due out next year.”

Fantasy Literature

“Lady Trent is an excellent narrator with a dry and wry wit who draws the readers in. Author Marie Brennan hit a home run when she came up with using Lady Trent as a narrative voice for her novels […] VOYAGE OF THE BASILISK by Marie Brennan is a Must Read […] a compelling, page-turning read.”

Guardian Liberty Voice

“This series is something of a departure from most of the rest of current fantasy in that it avoids most of the clichés and is more interesting in intellectual discoveries than martial combat. It doesn’t hurt any that it is also very well written. I have liked each of these better than its predecessors, so I’m actively looking forward to the next.”

Don D’Ammassa

“Isabella’s exuberant curiosity and unflagging ability to stumble into and out of trouble make her an engaging guide.”