The Dragon’s Gate by Barry Wolverton (Review + Giveaway)


Be sure to keep reading after today’s review, for your chance to win a signed copy of this book!

Guys, I can’t tell you how much I love The Chronicles of the Black Tulip series by Barry Wolverton. The first book, The Vanishing Island, just knocked my socks off last year. And the sequel, The Dragon’s Gate – in stores now – did not disappoint. Here are 5 of the things I loved most about this book:

dragons-gate-vanishing-island1. Lady Adventurer Archaeologist. In The Dragon’s Gate we meet Lady Jean Barrett, a bad ass lady archaeologist who goes on adventures around the world in search of incredible artifacts, sometimes dressed in disguise as a dude (because history). She’s like a 16th/17th-century female Indiana Jones, and I love her. She may not always have the most pure of motives, but she is truly an inspiring character and I adored having her along for the ride.

2. More Alternate History. One of the things I loved most about The Vanishing Island was Wolverton’s twist on history. Both of these books feel very much like historical fiction, but Wolverton has taken certain creative license to really make his own story shine and thrive. Toss in a bit of magic, and the result is a truly enchanting masterpiece.

3. More Adventure. All the adventure that I loved in The Vanishing Island returns ten-fold in The Dragons Gate. Bren, Mouse, and their companions reach (literal) new heights, travel to fantastic new destinations, and encounter unexpected new characters and challenges. Along the way, they also endeavor to learn more about themselves. The adventure makes for a page-turning reading experience.

(Okay, but those literal new heights? The ones depicted on the cover? Okay, truly terrifying descriptions. I have a painful, lifelong fear of heights, and Wolverton’s descriptions in this scene were so vivid and on point, I literally became dizzy and nauseous while reading. Where’s a Vomitorium when you need one?)

4. New Discoveries. Besides the more literal discoveries Bren and his friends make during their adventures, The Dragon’s Gate is also very much about discovering oneself. When we first met Bren, he wanted nothing more than to see the world — but in The Dragon’s Gate, he really just wants to go home. The thing that keeps him from returning there the most is his friend Mouse, and her determination to learn the truth about who she is and where she comes from. The book chronicles the give and take of their friendship, and what the consequences of their choices mean to each of them, leaving readers with plenty to contemplate.

5. Game-Changing Conclusion. The ending to The Dragon’s Gate sees some explosive revelations for Bren, Mouse, and their companions — paving the way for book three in this gorgeous trilogy. The book doesn’t once suffer from the dreaded “middle book syndrome,” but rather thrives with originality, unexpected twists, and delightful new characters that carry the plot forward in new and engaging ways. But it also masterfully sets the stage for the third and final book in The Chronicles of the Black Tulip series in a way that will leave readers both satisfied and yearning for more.

Filled with heartfelt and endearing characters, gorgeous writing, and a plot rich with surprising and delightful new adventures, The Dragon’s Gate is the perfect escape. Look for it in stores now.


Dragon's Gate - Cover FinalAn engrossing fantasy, a high-seas adventure, an alternate history epic—this is the richly imagined and gorgeously realized second book in acclaimed author Barry Wolverton’s Chronicles of the Black Tulip, perfect for fans of The Glass Sentence and the Books of Beginning series.

A magical white jade stone and a map inscribed in bone that may be the key to an even greater mystery—this is the treasure Bren and Mouse have found buried on the Vanishing Island.

Mouse is determined to follow the map to a place called the Dragon’s Gate, convinced it will explain who she really is and the powers she possesses. Bren has had enough adventure for one lifetime and would like nothing more than to return to his father in Map. But nothing goes according to plan when the survivors of the Albatross are rescued by Lady Jean Barrett, a charismatic archaeologist with a sense of destiny.

Barrett is on a quest for the Eight Immortals, ancient artifacts she believes are buried in the tomb of China’s first emperor—the location of which has been hidden for nearly two thousand years. The only way for Bren, Mouse, and Barrett to all get what they want is to work together on a dangerous journey into the heart of China, a kingdom long closed to outsiders, where the greatest secrets about Mouse and Bren are waiting to be unveiled.

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contestWe’ve teamed up with our friends at Walden Pond Press to give away at least THREE signed copies of The Dragon’s Gate by Barry Wolverton, and you’ve got chances to win EVERY DAY this week. And the more people who enter, the more prizes we’ll give away.

Here’s how to enter:

  1. Visit every day this week, and check out our latest post featuring The Dragon’s Gate.
    (HOT TIP: New posts go live every morning at 8am ET/5am PT)
  2. Read that day’s post, and then comment on each day’s post with your response to the comment prompt.
  3. Then fill out the Rafflecopter form below to tell us you’ve commented, and earn additional chances to win. (We’ll post the Rafflecopter form on each day’s post, to make it easy for you!)
  4. BONUS! The more people who enter this contest, the more prizes we’ll give away. That means MORE signed copies of The Dragon’s Gate, and even copies of book 1, The Vanishing Island. So ENTER & SHARE, share, share!

The more posts you visit & comment, the more chances you have to win!

Also be sure to complete the Rafflecopter completely for your entries to be counted. (We also require you provide us with your U.S. mailing address up front. This information will not be shared or sold; we’ll use it ONLY if you win to mail you your prize!)

Ready? Here is today’s prompt:

WEDNESDAY’S CONTEST COMMENTS: Why do you want to read The Dragon’s Gate?

a Rafflecopter giveaway
This contest is open to the U.S. only, and runs through midnight (PT) on Friday, November 18th. Please see our contest policy for complete details. 








6 thoughts on “The Dragon’s Gate by Barry Wolverton (Review + Giveaway)

Add yours

  1. I love to read fantasy books. This book is perfect to ignite imagination and take a person on a fun-filled roller coaster. Would be fun to read this book and escape to a magical land.

  2. I love to read fantasy books. This is a perfect book to ignite a person’s imagination and take on a fun-filled roller coaster ride. It would be fun to read this book and escape to a magical land.

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