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EONA by Alison Goodman

EONA

By Alison Goodman

Age Range: 12 & up

Pub Date: April 19th, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-670-06311-6
Publisher: Viking

It's always nice to see fantasylands outside the usual Western Europe–inspired model, and this dulogy’s faux-China is no exception (despite the white girl on the U.S. edition's cover). Eona the Dragoneye must save the world by controlling her spirit dragon, resisting evil impulses and making sure she doesn't fall for the wrong guy. Eona, now openly living as a girl, has joined the rebellion to put the rightful emperor on the throne. In Eon (2008), ten of the twelve Dragoneyes were killed, leaving only Eon and evil Lord Ido controlling spirit dragons that protect the empire. Now Eona must learn to manage her own dragon, and she can't do it without help from power-mad Ido. Her friends are troubled, from warrior Ryko’s fear that Eona can now control his mind to Lady Dela’s anguish that the needs of the rebellion are forcing her to travel disguised as a man, growing a beard in her hated male body. Eona, meanwhile, is torn between lustful feelings for both the Emperor and Ido, between the desire for power and her loyalty to the empire. Not as richly flavored a world as Cindy Pon’s Silver Phoenix (2009), but a steamy page turner nonetheless, tension slowly building from slow start to a climactic battle packed with large-scale combat, mystical battles and sexual tension. One of those rare and welcome fantasies that complicate black-and-white morality. (Fantasy. 12 & up)