Eon

Eon is a fantasy thriller by Alison Goodman that won the 2008 Aurealis Award for best fantasy novel. If you want a fast-paced and totally imaginary book to read, then Eon is for you. This book is based on complete fantasy but has a bit of folklore in it including dragons.

Eon is an apprentice to the Tiger Dragoneye, one of the people in the kingdom who is bound to one of the 12 energy dragons, each one named with one of the animals in the Zodiac. Eon wants his master to be wealthy and wants to escape from his world of poverty so he trains hard for four years in hope of becoming the Rat Dragoneye’s apprentice. The only two problem are… Eon is a cripple with a bad leg and he is also a girl named Eona pretending to be a boy. The strict rule in that land is that, no matter how crippled you are as a boy, that would still be better than an athletic girl. It was believed in that kingdom that girls are too weak to be a Dragoneye.

In most obvious books, luck is always on the main character’s side and they usually become what they intended to become. In this case, Eona should be the new Rat Dragoneye apprentice. Sadly, that is not the case. During the auditions, the cruel and abusive Rat Dragoneye named Lord Ido instantly has a dislike for Eona. Not only that, but Ranne, the swordsmaster who was to spar with Eona, is a minion of Ido and instead of doing the rehearsed moves that were designated for the audition, Ranne fights all-out. Eona is knocked out because of her crippled leg. During the choosing, Dillon, another apprentice, is chosen to be the new Rat Dragoneye apprentice. Just when all is lost, one of the mirrors in the stadium shatters, releasing the Mirror Dragon, who chooses Eona as the new Mirror Dragoneye.

Eona wakes up in a royal bed inside the palace. For a second, she thinks that she has been discovered as a girl and is taken into custody. Then she remembers that she is the apprentice of the Mirror Dragon (The Dragon Dragon), who hasn’t appeared for over 50 decades. Now, hiding her gender amidst professionals has never been harder. Can Eona camouflage among the other noblemen and be a Dragoneye without spilling her secret? Or will she end up dying in the court palace assassinated or even worse, to be revealed of her true identity and being tortured to death? All questions will be answered in Eon: Dragoneye Reborn.

I would recommend this book to anyone older than 10 as it is a bit violent at times. If you enjoy pretending to be someone then this is the perfect book for you. There are many good descriptions in Eon but my favorite is the first description of the dragons.

Two pale blue membranes extended out from each shoulder and rippled in the sunlight like watered silk, then folded back against his body. The heavy head swung around to face us again, the mirror showing the solid line of his spine and the thick fall of his white mane. Although his eyes were no longer reflected, I knew he was studying us, choosing his apprentice.

We all know Eona is not going to be chosen but the description is very vivid and unique. This is one of the few books worthy of being called a good fantasy. I would call this book a hybrid because it contains elements of history and folklore embedded within the fantasy. Eon is truly a worthy book to read.

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