The Dragon King Chronicles #1
Available January 2nd
Received from publisher for review
THE STORY (from Goodreads)
Kira’s the only female
in the king’s army, and the prince’s bodyguard. She’s a demon slayer and
an outcast, hated by nearly everyone in her home city of Hansong. And,
she’s their only hope...
Murdered kings and discovered traitors
point to a demon invasion, sending Kira on the run with the young
prince. He may be the savior predicted in the Dragon King Prophecy, but
the missing treasure of myth may be the true key. With only the guidance
of the cryptic prophecy, Kira must battle demon soldiers, evil shaman,
and the Demon Lord himself to find what was once lost and raise a prince
into a king.
Intrigue and mystery, ancient lore and action-packed fantasy come together in this heart-stopping first book in a trilogy.
Showing a great deal of promise before the spine is even cracked, Prophecy has us highly anticipating an adrenaline-fueled story led by a strong but ostracized young heroine, desperately hoping the pages deliver on what the blurb so beautifully teases. Unfortunately the potential Prophecy is never entirely realized, giving us characters who don’t quite make the transition from black and white words to larger-than-life color images, leaving us on the outside looking in rather than in the middle of the action with our hearts on our sleeves, vulnerable to any who wish to inflict serious emotional wounds. Prophecy is read quickly and easily, but for those who seek out complexity and thrive on uncovering layer after layer of their beloved characters, the experience may be a touch underwhelming.
Kira is everything the synopsis promises she’ll be–an extraordinary young woman verbally chastised and openly mocked day in and day out for her fighting prowess and lack of feminine traits, and while she earns our sympathy and admiration from the first page, it doesn’t quite lead to the connection we so desire. There are a handful of opportunities with Kira for Ms. Oh to slice open our skin and slide our young warrior underneath; numerous threads existing that we can’t help but want to tug just to see her unravel, thereby exposing us to a beauty and vulnerability we know is there but simply can’t reach. Instead, our hands ghost over perfectly smooth fabric, and while we’re told there are snags and imperfections present, we’re never given the opportunity to discover them in a tactile, memorable way.
Despite our driving need to get more to the heart of Kira and our subsequent frustration when we’re unable to do so, she is a likable character with some serious fighting skills, making her journey one that’s entertaining even if it leaves us wanting a bit more. The character interactions and dialogue can at times read a little young, making this fantasy adventure perhaps better suited to a younger YA crowd or even middle grade readers who are not looking for as much depth in their character development as some of us older readers are.