Kitsune shapeshifter Yumeko has given up the final piece of the Scroll of a Thousand Prayers in order to save everyone she loves from imminent death. Now she and her ragtag band of companions must journey to the wild sea cliffs of Iwagoto in a desperate last-chance effort to stop the Master of Demons from calling upon the Great Kami dragon and making the wish that will plunge the empire into destruction and darkness.
Shadow clan assassin Kage Tatsumi has regained control of his body and agreed to a true deal with the devil—the demon inside him, Hakaimono. They will share his body and work with Yumeko and their companions to stop a madman and separate Hakaimono from Tatsumi and the cursed sword that had trapped the demon for nearly a millennium.
But even with their combined skills and powers, this most unlikely team of heroes knows the forces of evil may be impossible to overcome. And there is another player in the battle for the scroll, a player who has been watching, waiting for the right moment to pull strings that no one even realized existed…until now.
I have loved this series from the first book & though I may not have been emotionally prepared enough for this final instalment, it was the perfect ending to what has become an all time favourite series. Please beware that this review will more than likely contain spoilers for the first two books.
Night of the Dragon picks up hours after the ending of Soul of the Sword. Yumeko, Kage Tatsumi, Reika, Okame and Taiyo Daisuke have just lost the final piece of the Dragon Scroll, injured and defeated they must band together to defeat Genno and prevent him calling the Great Dragon and getting his wish. They must make it to Tsuki territory, the islands of the Moon Clan and take part in a battle to prevent the mass extinction of all humankind. Yumeko will need every single one of her unlikely crew to make the journey and defeat Genno, a journey filled with despair, discoveries, betrayals and new beginnings.
I love Yumeko, she became an instant hit with me in the first book and her progression through the series is staggering. Though she is still a young and naive girl, these are some of her strongest traits, she is able to see the good in everybody even a Ronin and a boy sharing his soul with a demon. She is the glue that holds the gang together and they would have been defeated long ago if it wasn’t for her kitsune power and ability to win over mythical creatures. She knows going in to the final battle that it will likely be their last, and yet nothing could stop her from her goal. Kage Tatsumi is just well *swoon*. Stoic and afraid of what has become of himself since his soul merged with Hakaimono the demon once cursed to his sword. He feels like he is too dangerous to be around, and it is only through Yumeko’s stubbornness and unwillingness to be afraid of him that he comes to realisations that he never thought possible. Along with Reika, Okame and Taiyo Daisuke they make up one of my all time favourite literary gangs, Reika the ultimate mother hen, Okame’s ability to diffuse tension and always get a laugh and Taiyo Daisuke the most honourable warrior. They each have their part to play in Yumeko’s journey and the book simply wouldn’t be the same without them.
This book destroyed me, I thought I was emotionally prepared enough and I had guesses as to the ending but nothing could have prepared me for what the author created. Her writing has you flying alongside the crew on their journey and she makes this possible with giving us our third Narrator in Suki. When I read her part in the first book I had no idea how pivotal she would be to their journey, she brings about all kinds of revelations, some intentionally and others not. Though she may have had a sad start and terrible death, seeing her fulfil her purpose and finally getting the peace she deserves had me tearing up. Kagawa’s world building through the series has been immense, we have travelled through multiple clans lands, some friendly some not, travelled through the shadow realm and in this book we travel to the Moon Islands, the place of the original rising of the Dragon. Her writing style makes the story flow effortlessly, and before you know it you’re nearly finished.
The romance, man the romance. It was so beautifully done. We know from the first book that Yumeko and Kage Tatsumi have feelings for each other, but after his soul was merged with Hakaimono he feels even less like he deserves the love and trust from this amazing Kitsune girl. Seeing their relationship grow through this book was a blessing and their interactions were bittersweet and beautiful. The second romance in this series was written equally as beautifully and *spoiler for book 2* I loved seeing Okame and Taiyo Daisuke’s relationship progress to the point where they didn’t feel the need to hide in front of their friends.
There were sooo many twists and turns in this book. It went in a direction I never expected and though at first I felt like a certain bit was put in simply because it could be, the purpose was made clear towards the end and I couldn’t imagine it ending any other way. Talking about endings, I know I said the book destroyed me, and it did. However, I was over it I was happy and then I got to the epilogue and the last 4 words had me bawling all over again. This was the perfect ending to a truly immersive and entertaining series, one which I will definitely come back to from time to time and I would love the author to write more books based in this world. There are so many more things I want to talk about but i’m trying to make this as spoiler free as possible!The easiest 5/5 of the year so far. Anyone remotely interested in fantasy, mythology and kick ass crews should pick this series up instantly.