Title: Shadow of the Fox
Authors: Julie Kagawa
Genre: YA, Fantasy
Publisher: Harlequin Teen (HarperCollins)
Date published: October 2, 2018
Physical copies of this book were kindly provided by the publisher and Indigo Books & Music Inc., in exchange for an honest review.
One thousand years ago, the great Kami Dragon was summoned to grant a single terrible wish—and the land of Iwagoto was plunged into an age of darkness and chaos.
Now, for whoever holds the Scroll of a Thousand Prayers, a new wish will be granted. A new age is about to dawn.
Raised by monks in the isolated Silent Winds temple, Yumeko has trained all her life to hide her yokai nature. Half kitsune, half human, her skill with illusion is matched only by her penchant for mischief. Until the day her home is burned to the ground, her adoptive family is brutally slain and she is forced to flee for her life with the temple’s greatest treasure—one part of the ancient scroll.
There are many who would claim the dragon’s wish for their own. Kage Tatsumi, a mysterious samurai of the Shadow Clan, is one such hunter, under orders to retrieve the scroll…at any cost. Fate brings Kage and Yumeko together. With a promise to lead him to the scroll, an uneasy alliance is formed, offering Yumeko her best hope for survival. But he seeks what she has hidden away, and her deception could ultimately tear them both apart.
With an army of demons at her heels and the unlikeliest of allies at her side, Yumeko’s secrets are more than a matter of life or death. They are the key to the fate of the world itself.
As some of you may have seen me mention, I have been really struggling with YA Fantasy over the past year. A lot of the main female characters, and even the plots, have begun to sound very similar to me, and I’m not sure if this is because I used to read mostly fantasy (and high fantasy at that), or whether there just are a lot of similar YA Fantasy books out there, but I’m glad that Shadow of the Fox was an exception! Even though Kagawa wrote this book in the classic quest style, I found it refreshing and entertaining! Bits of the story reminded me of the manga and anime Inu Yasha, while other bits reminded me of Studio Ghibli’s Princess Mononoke, but overall, it was a story all its own. The action to dialogue to travel ratio was perfect, and I didn’t at any point feel the urge to read faster through some parts due to boredom. I also found it great that the plot thickens the deeper we get into the story, and also that the world really came alive.
I have travelled to Japan twice now, and have watched anime, and read manga, about Feudal Japan since I was a child, so I had a lot of visual aid in that sense, but I think that any reader without those aids will also be able to easily imagine the world of Shadow of the Fox because of how effectively Kagawa describes it. I was also very happy with the dialogues in this book, since they felt realistic and always stuck to the point, and I also love all of the Japanese terms that Kagawa snuck in there! I already knew most of them, but she did a great job of sneaking them in and explaining them so that she could use said words again later in the story, sans explanation. I also loved the characters quite a bit (and find myself missing the main crew a lot). Yumeko I was especially impressed with, because she felt very unique and genuine to me. She is thoroughly pure of heart, and it can be seen through her actions, and how she treats others. I also liked that despite her not being too physically powerful, she always tried to help, but was also never too proud to let others take over certain situations. Overall, this was definitely one of my top reads of 2018, and I highly recommend it!
Julie Kagawa (born October 12, 1982) is an American author, best known for publishing and writing The Iron Fey Series consisting of 15 books including: The Iron King, The Iron Daughter, The Iron Queen, and The Iron Knight. She was born in Sacramento, California, but moved to Hawaii with her family at the age of nine. Kagawa is of Japanese descent. She currently lives in Louisville, Kentucky. Kagawa has written novellas, along with novels … Kagawa has also opened her own Etsy shop where she sells her miniature clay figurines.She also draws illustrations that match her books.
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Shadow of the Fox was the Indigo Teen Staff Pick of the Month for October!
THANK YOU FOR READING MY REVIEW! HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK? WHAT DID YOU THINK? AND IF YOU HAVEN’T READ IT YET, DO YOU WANT TO, OR NOT? HOW COME? LET ME KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS IN THE COMMENTS!