Review: Dragon Pearl

Title: Dragon Pearl
Author: Yoon Ha Lee
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Publisher: Disney Book Group, Rick Riordan Presents
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: January 15, 2019
Rating: ★★★★★

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Goodreads Synopsis:

Rick Riordan Presents Yoon Ha Lee’s space opera about thirteen-year-old Min, who comes from a long line of fox spirits. But you’d never know it by looking at her.

To keep the family safe, Min’s mother insists that none of them use any fox-magic, such as Charm or shape-shifting. They must appear human at all times. Min feels hemmed in by the household rules and resents the endless chores, the cousins who crowd her, and the aunties who judge her. She would like nothing more than to escape Jinju, her neglected, dust-ridden, and impoverished planet. She’s counting the days until she can follow her older brother, Jun, into the Space Forces and see more of the Thousand Worlds.

When word arrives that Jun is suspected of leaving his post to go in search of the Dragon Pearl, Min knows that something is wrong. Jun would never desert his battle cruiser, even for a mystical object rumored to have tremendous power. She decides to run away to find him and clear his name.

Min’s quest will have her meeting gamblers, pirates, and vengeful ghosts. It will involve deception, lies, and sabotage. She will be forced to use more fox-magic than ever before, and to rely on all of her cleverness and bravery. The outcome may not be what she had hoped, but it has the potential to exceed her wildest dreams.

This sci-fi adventure with the underpinnings of Korean mythology will transport you to a world far beyond your imagination. 

Review:

This was an exciting story!

I loved the mix of folklore and a futuristic setting. Min is a Fox, so she is a shapeshifter. She lives on a different planet, but they take the form of humans since those are most common. There was a lot of science fiction, since most of the story took place on spaceships, but the background came from Korean folklore.

This story was so fast paced. I read it in just one day! It felt like a whole series because so much happened. It was thrilling in some parts too, because there was a lot of danger. Min started out as an innocent teenage girl, but she put herself in a lot of risky situations in a short amount of time.

I also like the diversity of the characters. The characters had Korean names. There was a character who preferred gender neutral pronouns. It takes a while to get used to a single person being referred to as “they,” but this was a great way to include gender diversity in the story.

What to read next:

Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi

Shadow of the Fox by Julie Kagawa

Have you read Dragon Pearl? What did you think of it?

10 thoughts on “Review: Dragon Pearl”

  1. Love that they’re including gender diversity in the story. It’s still pretty rare, even now. Which always surprises me! It sounds like a fun premise as well

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Different is good sometimes, though. I still need to read The Storm Runner as well, but I’m looking forward to reading both…probably in March when I’m celebrating my Middle Grade March sort-of reading challenge.

        Liked by 1 person

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