Sunday, September 12, 2010

Eon by Alison Goodman

Pages (Paperback): 544 pages
Publisher: Firebird; Reprint edition
Released: August 31, 2010

Quick Thoughts: I love fantasy novels and I love beautiful covers, so when I was offered this book to review I knew that I had to jump on this chance.

Review: Ever since Eona could remember, she could see the Dragons, but in a world where women are thought to be to bring corruption in a world of dragon and magic, they are pushed aside. Eona, along with her master, decide to disguise Eona as a male and train her to be a Dragoneye. If Eona, now known as Eon, is accepted as a Dragoneye, it will bring riches to her master and bring her into a life of stability. If she doesn't get chosen, then she'll be sent away to the salt mines. Both paths bring hardships, but only one will leave her wondering if death is around the corner. And this isn't from the salt mines.

Eon isn't successful at first and all seems to be lost, until the Mirror Dragon, a dragon that hasn't been seen in 500 years, shows up. Her master is pleased, Eon is pleased, but without knowing it, she's made herself a huge politic chip that is just waiting to be moved around the board. Pushed into the politics, without wanting to be a part of it, and trying to hide her gender, Eon will have to find her place within the Palace and find herself as well. If she doesn't succeed it will bring death and misery, not only to herself, but to everyone as well.

Final Thoughts: The story told in Eon isn't anything new. Women pretending to be men to infiltrate a palace is something I've read before. However, Goodman does a good job in weaving something that is somewhat predictable into a compelling and refreshing story.

Eon's struggles with her gender and trying to fit in were one of my favourite parts in the novel, but also one of the more frustrating aspects. There were many times when I wanted to reach out and tell her what the dragon was saying. I thought it was obvious, but then again because I'm not in her situation and I'm simply on the outside, it seems more obvious to me. If she was found out then she'll be killed, so even though it was frustrating, it did make sense.

I also enjoyed the politics in the novel and seeing Lord Ido do his stuff. Even though he is one of the villain of the novel, he was one of my favourite characters to read about.

There are many great points about Eon, but I would have liked to read more about the Prince and seen more about how Eon trying to do go through life in the Palace. The ending also isn't an ending and you will have to pick up Eona when it comes out to see what will happen next in this duology. Other than that, this was a great read. Eon has great characters, great plot, a lovely setting rich with Chinese and Japanese culture, and writing that flows smoothly. Even though there are many pages in this book, it never felt like an overwhelming task to finish. Everything just worked.

I enjoyed my time reading this and I can’t wait to pick up Eona!

Grade: 9.5 out of 10

Thank you to Penguin Canada for providing this book for review.

Read the shorter version of Eon at 5 Line Reviews

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