Night of the Dragon by Julie Kagawa Book Review
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The night of the dragon approaches and Yumeko’s enemies hold all the pieces needed to summon it. And while Kage has control of his body once again, even teaming up with the oni Hakaimono may not be enough. Time is running out as Yumeko, Kage, and their companions race to Iwagoto to stop the summoning. But a hoard of demons stands between them and their goal. When they meet the yokai from Yumeko’s dreams, an unlikely ally may be the help they need, but it will come at a terrible cost.
Some readers may be enticed to continue reading for the developing character relationships, but the Japanese lore continues to pull me into this world. And Julie Kagawa doesn’t fail to introduce new demons and information in this final novel. Each battle is skillfully drawn out, weaving in new experiences for the reader and creating devastation in their wake as the characters near their final destination. But I did find the romantic side of the story took away from the action.
While there is an even mix of romance and battle to appease various readers, some of the relationships developed rapidly in Night of the Dragon. Albeit the characters are marching off to battle, and not all may survive, but romance made from desperation does not interest me. Especially when there is a large build-up and apprehension for an ensuing battle, and the romance is placed right before it all comes to a head, putting everything on hold. I found myself wanting to skip ahead to the battle scene.
However, everyone’s character arc wraps up by the end of Night of the Dragon. For some, their endings were predictable but no less entertaining to witness. Others I felt went against their base nature readers have grown to know from book one. It is a bittersweet ending as sacrifices are made, but the conclusion for some breaks the emotional weight of losing characters readers have come to know and love. The ending did feel as though Julie Kagawa was afraid to layer on more heartache for the readers.
Night of the Dragon was filled with Japanese lore, epic battles, and surprising revelations. Even if some of the relationships felt rushed, the dialogue between characters helped propel the story forward. The ending did feel a bit drawn out, and I felt the focus should have remained on overcoming the Master of Demons, but the subplot had to come into play by the last book. If you enjoy Japanese folklore and typical young adult romance I’d still give this one a try.
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