I really have no idea when I bought this book and its sequel, Eona. It would have to be at least two years ago now, quite some time before I moved and added them to my to-read list.
After reading hundreds of YA novels, I’ve really come to expect very little from them. Generally speaking, I find the plots boring, I don’t like the characters, and the romances more often than not annoy me. The worst part, however, is that I find a lot of the Fantasy YA I’ve read over the years are just YA with a touch of fantastical elements here and there, not really a YA story taking place in a fantasy world, like what always want to read.
Though of course Eon, like all books, had its ups and downs, I was quite pleased with the characters, the plot, and the world. I’ll start by talking a bit about the world itself, as that’s what I most often find the least pleasing about YA fantasy.
We look at the world through the eyes of Eon, who is basically a slave in a monarchical society. She has few possessions, even fewer friends, and no place in the world. Of course as her position changes, her outlook on her surroundings changes, but it’s really the evolution of that viewpoint that brings the world to life. It’s difficult to explain this without providing spoilers, unfortunately, but let me try to articulate it in a way that’s similar to what happens in the book.
Let’s say that the story begins in a small, 10×10 room. There are no windows, no doors, and no ways to speak to the outside. This is the extent on Eon’s outlook on life and knowledge about the world around her. But then some time through the story, one wall to her room is knocked down. She can now move from her small 10×10 space and into another room that had been connected to hers all along. As she explores the additional space, she comes to suspect that there is much more to everything than she can see, and so she carefully goes about knocking down the other walls on her own.
Exploring the world like this– through the eyes of a character that really knows about as much about it as you do– was quite fascinating, and I feel that it really allowed the world to build up into something very rich and versatile. Even through the final pages of the book, where I had already guessed what the ending would be, I thought the world was beautiful through both description and discovery.
I’ve decided that I’ll save talk about the book’s characterization and plot for the post on the sequel, Eona, so I’m going to use the rest of this post to talk a bit about the writing itself.
In all honesty, I liked some parts of the writing, hated others. I thought the beginning was a bit slow (although it provided enough to keep me interested in learning more, albeit quite annoyed) and that there was a lot of unnecessary information thrown in here and there. In the end, however, the good outweighed the bad. I loved reading about the dragons, the magic, the characters, and the environment… I found that a lot of words were weaved together beautifully.
So that’s all for now– you’ll get the rest of my thoughts once I get to the Eona post.
Have you read Eon or plan to? What are your thoughts on the book?