The Iron Dragon's Daughter - Michael Swanwick
This book was recommended to me somewhere along the way and also appears as part of one of the 'Fantasy Masterworks' series, so I expected it would be good.

The basic premise of The Iron Dragon's Daughter is of a world alongside ours where human children have been stolen to work in the great foundries where dragons are made. Our protagonist, determined to know a different life from the one she is currently leading, makes plans to steal one of the dragons and flee - her plan works well in some ways but not in others, as she is forced to take refuge among the people who enslaved her kind.

The idea of changelings being taken for a particular purpose was an interesting enough one, and the initial setting of the foundry was well-drawn and dark, but after the escape my interest began to wane. Add to that the author's apparent obsession with sex - not in itself a bad thing, but hardly a substitute for plot - and I got about two-thirds of the way through before I decided I really didn't care any more.

There's a sequel to this now, written many years after the original publication of this book: the follow-up is The Dragons of Babel, but I can't see myself bothering with it...