DRAGONFLY by Julia Golding

DRAGONFLY

Age Range: 11 - 13

KIRKUS REVIEW

This familiar-feeling fantasy devotes much energy to culture creation and culture clash but disquietingly favors one over others. Taoshira, nicknamed Tashi, is the Fourth Crown Princess of the Blue Crescent Islands. Her existence is lonely and formal, as she recites ritual prayer after ritual prayer and helps rule. Prince Ramil, in the mainland nation of Gerfal, rebels against his father’s plan that he wed Taoshira in a military alliance. Tashi and Ram meet, hate, spar and predictably fall in love as they survive kidnapping by a warlord, imprisonment, bandit attacks and separation. Pivotal military and romantic events seem oddly brief and anticlimactic. The Blue Crescents resemble a stylized Japan except for their inhabitants’ repeatedly mentioned—almost fetishized—golden hair; Tashi, disturbingly, is an Orientalized blond who can only flourish in Ram’s British/European-type country. Ram is interracial, his (dead) mother from a desert-dwelling, “dark-skinned people known as the Horse Followers,” but his culture is the normative white one that the text and Tashi prefer. For large collections or critical race/gender study. (Fantasy. 11-13)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-7614-5582-0
Page count: 400pp
Publisher: Marshall Cavendish
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1st, 2009




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