Review! Shadow of the Fox by Julie Kagawa

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Plot:

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.

The first in a new series by bestselling author Julie Kagawa, whose other novels include The Iron King and Talon series.

I love Asian inspired fantasy novels and this one has become a fast favourite. Kagawa describes Yumeko’s world so vividly that you are transported there as you read the book. I love the depth with which she has delved into Asian folklore, some of the creatures I had heard of through other novels, such as the Yokai, but she brings in so many new creatures and forms of magic that make this a thoroughly riveting read.

Yumeko herself fast became a favourite character of mine, so naive and yet wise at the same time. She becomes a deft hand at trickery, maybe stemming from her half Kitsune side, and as more and more people get added to her and Tatsumi’s unlikely band of misfits, the lies she has to tell become more about saving her life then hiding her true identity. Tatsumi is a character that I found thoroughly interesting. Always having to fight against the demon that could possess him. The only way to prevent the demon taking hold is to turn off his emotions, something he struggles with as soon as Yumeko enters his life.

I was hooked from the first chapter of this book, and the twists and turns kept me reading until the very end. And that ending! If I wasn’t already desperate to get my hands on the next book I certainly am now. This is an easy 5/5 for me, great characters, beautiful descriptions and a gripping story line. I will definitely be picking up the next book and Ill definitely be reading some of Kagawa’s other books.

Goodreads

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