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Eon #1

Eon: Dragoneye Reborn

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Also Known As: Two Pearls of Wisdom, Eon: Rise of the Dragoneye, and Eon (All the same book just published with different publishers)

Swordplay, dragon magic--and a hero with a desperate secret

Twelve-year-old Eon has been in training for years. His intensive study of Dragon Magic, based on East Asian astrology, involves two kinds of skills: sword-work and magical aptitude. He and his master hope that he will be chosen as a Dragoneye--an apprentice to one of the twelve energy dragons of good fortune.

But Eon has a dangerous secret. He is actually Eona, a sixteen-year-old girl who has been masquerading as a boy for the chance to become a Dragoneye. Females are forbidden to use Dragon Magic; if anyone discovers she has been hiding in plain sight, her death is assured.

When Eon's secret threatens to come to light, she and her allies are plunged into grave danger and a deadly struggle for the Imperial throne. Eon must find the strength and inner power to battle those who want to take her magic...and her life.

531 pages, Hardcover

First published August 31, 2008

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About the author

Alison Goodman

11 books3,694 followers
Alison is the author of seven novels so far including the award winning Dark Days Club trilogy (aka as the Lady Helen trilogy) and EON and EONA, a New York Times Bestselling fantasy duology. Her upcoming novel --The Benevolent Society of Ill-Mannered Ladies-- is book 1 in a new series, and will be published in the USA, UK and Australia at the end of May 2023.

Alison lives in Australia and has recently completed her PhD, so can now call herself Dr Al.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 4,439 reviews
Profile Image for Emily May.
1,993 reviews298k followers
February 20, 2015
“Even a cornered rabbit will fight with teeth and claws.”

If you like the sound of really good fantasy that is steeped in a unique blend of Chinese and Japanese mythology, the world Alison Goodman has created should be next on your list. Vivid, colourful and highly imaginative. But you might want to make sure you have the even more amazing sequel lined up for when you're done.

How refreshing it is to be completely surprised by a story, to not be able to predict where the plot will take me next, to not be bombarded with insta-love and cringy romance. I cannot tell you how often while reading this I said a silent thanks to Ms Goodman for being so original. The politics of this book also drew me in; in a way that many other fantasy books completely failed to do. It was so interesting. The aristocracy here is full of liars and backstabbers and people out for what they could get.

This combined with the fantasy aspect of the dragons - which I didn't really expect to love that much - was superb. It was the perfect blend of political upheaval and magic.

In this exciting new world, Eon is one of the candidates to become the next Dragoneye apprentice. He knows his chances of success are slim after being crippled, but it's much more than that. Because Eon is actually Eona, a girl, forbidden to be a Dragoneye warrior and facing certain death if her secret is uncovered. In a bizarre series of events, Eona ends up being thrown into the limelight, blackmailed and used as a weapon by opposing sides, and caught in the middle of a battle for power that she may be the only one with the ability to stop.

“How brief and hidden were the moments of destiny.”

Eona is an incredible character, driven by a mixture of loyalties and the desperate desire to survive in a world that is against her. She is the kind of heroine that you really want to succeed and it matters a great deal what happens to her and where this story takes her. There are not many books as unique and enchanting as this one and the sequel is all of that and more.
Profile Image for Wendy Darling.
1,638 reviews34k followers
June 16, 2023
I hardly ever read straightforward fantasy, but every once in awhile a book comes along that blows right past all my usual objections to become a new favorite. As gently but strongly as a wisp of incense, Eon beckoned until I was completely in the thrall of its magic, and I hate to think how sad my life would be if didn't have this vividly imaginative novel in it.

For years, 16-year-old Eon has been training to be a Dragoneye apprentice, a coveted position in which the student serves as the conduit between energy dragons and the human world. Eon's whole way of life is cloaked in secrecy and danger, however, because Eon is actually Eona--a girl forced by necessity to live her life as a boy. If her secret were discovered, her life would be danger, as well as the lives of those around her. To make impossible odds even more impossible, Eona is also crippled, so the deck is very much stacked against her. But on the day the apprentices are chosen, it is revealed that Eona has the unusual ability of seeing all the energy dragons, not just one--and she is chosen by the powerful Mirror Dragon, a being that has not been seen in hundreds of years.

There are gorgeous dragons and epic sword battles, all against the backdrop of an incredible setting that takes its influences from a blend of Japanese and Chinese cultures, but is still a unique world of its own. I really like the idea of stories with girls disguised as boys, and though the concept is certainly nothing new, it's definitely not something we see too much in young adult literature. What makes this an exceptional book is the intricate tapestry of characters and themes that are deftly woven together, as well richly textured and evocative writing. You can practically hear the whisper of heavy silk robes and see the glow of majestic dragons as you read this book, and every night when I closed my eyes, I kept thinking about the creak of wooden wagons and the clang of swords that I'd read about that day.

You are wrong when you say there is no power in being a woman. When I think of my mother and the women in my tribe, and the hidden women in the harem, I know there are many types of power in this world...I found power in accepting the truth of who I am. It may not be a truth that others can accept, but I cannot live any other way.

For me, the book's greatest strength is its depiction of gender and the roles that women play in a parochial society. Mature young adult fans will appreciate the situations and themes explored with transgender characters, eunuchs, forced intimacy, and physical assault. I found it fascinating that the author chose to write a book focusing on a world where power is forbidden to women, and my favorite character was the indelible Lady Dela, Eona's "contraire" mentor who is a man living as a woman...who is in love with a noble eunuch.

The book is by no means perfect, however. Eon has a problem connecting with her dragon, and as soon as the problem was presented, I knew immediately--as I suspect most readers will--what the issue was. So it was frustrating to watch her further sabotage herself for several hundred pages before she finally realizes what the solution is near the end. I also wasn't crazy about the fact that one of the most interesting things about Eona's character is just...negated, in a very fairy tale sort of way when I mourned the loss of that trait, because it unnecessarily removes an obstacle she had already proven she was able to overcome.

As frustrating as the novel occasionally became--and it is admittedly very slow in the middle--I really, really liked this one. It's so uncommon to find a book with such an engaging fantasy story and an intriguing heroine, let alone one that also seamlessly blends magic, a historical feel, and thought-provoking themes. I'd strongly recommend picking up Eon if you find the synopsis even remotely appealing; I think most readers will be just as enthralled as I was.

The Sequel

Believe it or not, as much as I liked Eon, I loved the sequel Eona! And yes, yes, I will attempt to put my thoughts down on paper at some point.

Profile Image for Vinaya.
185 reviews2,092 followers
April 16, 2011
When I first started this book, I was like,


Then I read some more, and I became more like this:


Thankfully, before I went completely bald, the shit hit the fan, and it was THE END.


This book and I have a long and complicated history. About two years ago, a friend from the UK was visiting and she left behind a book called The Two Pearls of Wisdom. She told me I HAD to read it, and as I tend to do with most paperbacks, I shoved it in the black hole I call a bookcase and promptly forgot it existed.

Fast forward two years later, to when my book goddess Tatiana writes a glowing review of a fantasy novel called Eon: Dragoneye Reborn. Enthusiastic as always, I rush off to order the book, and while I'm waiting eagerly for it to arrive, I decide to sort through the overflowing mess of books in my room. I come across The Two Pearls of Wisdom, and while I'm randomly flipping pages, a name leaps out and stabs me in the eye. Eon. I read the synopsis in disbelief and log on to Goodreads to see that my terrible suspicion is true. The Two Pearls of Wisdom is, in fact, the original title of Eon: Dragoneye Reborn.


As I said, this book inspired a variety of emotions in me, most of them extreme. 'Ah, the hallmark of a great book', you think. But the truth is, I almost gave this book *whispers* three stars. Seriously, when I was halfway through the story, I thought I might have an apoplexy and splatter my overtaxed brains across the walls. (Now there's a pretty image for you!)

Eon is not an easy character to like. He doesn't have the easy courage of a Katniss, or the admirable and stoic, heroism of a Harry Potter. He is a little too real, if there can be such a thing. As the unprepared victim of political intrigue and power games, he is unwilling to accept the responsibility that has been thrust upon him. Expecting to be an apprentice, one of twelve and schooled by a Dragoneye, he is instead thrust into the position of Co-Ascendant, expected to govern the Council and prevent the usurpation of the Emperor's throne.

While Eon's fright and denial of the burden placed on him were beautifully drawn, and only mildly irritating, it was his attempts to reach his dragon that truly tried my patience. As a reader, you are well aware that Eon's continued consumption of the Sun drug, and his denial of his femininity, are distancing him from his dragon; but since Eon continues to struggle against this obvious conclusion for several chapters, it leads to a sort of hideous, helpless frustration on the poor reader's part. Combined with the general passivity of his characterization, I found it very hard to like him indeed.

It is not until the very end that Eon begins to accept responsibility for his decisions and moves up from pawn to queen. But I am still not ready to forgive an entire book where the 'protagonist' is subject to the whims of other people and gets tossed around like a leaf in a high gale with no motivating force of his own.

The reason I refer to Eon as a he, instead of a she, is because Goodman has skilfully portrayed him as a boy throughout the novel. Except for occasional thoughts about his hidden womanhood, Eon never deviates from the path of manhood.

The main thing that earned this book four stars is the sheer diversity of its mythos and characters. Unlike the large majority of Western-focused SFF, Eon derives its mythos from Chinese and Japanese culture. It is a viciously alien but colorful amalgamation of forced castrations, transvestites, bonded labour and magical energy.

There is a LOT of world building to process is in this book, but a familiarity with Chinese culture and history, and the sheer fascination of immersing myself in a world so far out of the norm, helped it all go down easy,

Eon was a difficult book emotionally, but it was gripping and edgy and real. Definitely a must-read, if you haven't already.
Profile Image for Kat Kennedy.
475 reviews16.3k followers
December 4, 2013
Well, I hope you're happy Tatiana, Penny and everyone else who convinced me to read this book. I hope you're REAL happy!

Happy Bug
They probably look something like this right now!

I just spent the last five hours reading this book and freaking the hell out. I swear the tension, anxiety and heart palpitations did not stop until the last page. Right up to the end I was clutching my chest like some kind of heart patient in desperate need of a quadruple bypass.

The big themes in this novel centre on sexuality, gender roles and personal identity so get ready to get a little confused about whether you need to pee standing up or sitting down.

Although, the Sheewee and P-mate have erased most of the need to worry about squatting if you do decide that you are, after all, a sitter...

Then again, there is another option:

[image error]
You could just admit defeat now in the face of the overwhelming confusion you will experience when men are more feminine than you.

I felt that the writing was smooth with rich descriptions and powerful characters. I wonder what the moral of Goodman's story will be as the series progresses? What defines the essence of woman and what defines the essence of man?

We know from modern technology that our brains are wired differently and may in fact work differently. I'm still convinced it has a lot to do with the fact that men can have one type of orgasm... and women can have three.

man crying
Ya...I know! Sucks to be you!

This novel seems to stay mostly silent on what specific properties Goodman would attribute to women and men. I hope the series remains that way but the ending and Eona's power gives me reason to be concerned. In fact, Goodman doesn't really go into what it means to be woman or man in this novel and instead seems to glaze over it. However, I'm witholding judgment in this case as Eona is still discovering her own feminine identity. I'll be interested to see where this journey leads her.

And so should you, you know, since I'm using my massive sheballs to command your interest in this series.
Profile Image for Tatiana.
1,406 reviews11.6k followers
March 12, 2011
As seen on The Readventurer

When it comes to fantasy, I am a fan of the softer, girlier type, heavy on romance and relationships and lighter on mythology, magic and dragons. That's why it is such a surprise I liked this book so much, because Eon: Dragoneye Reborn is very mythology-oriented and prone to frequent info-dumping (especially in the beginning).

At first, the story is reminiscent of
Alanna: The First Adventure. Eon(a) is a 16-year old girl who pretends to be a 12-year old boy in order to have a chance of becoming a Dragoneye - an apprentice to one of the 12 dragons. The Dragoneye help channel and manipulate the dragons' energies. Eona has to conceal her sex because only men are allowed to be the Dragoneye and if her true identity is found out, her death is imminent.

Soon, however, the story becomes something 10 times more exciting than Tamora Pierce ever offered. Once the day when the ascending dragon chooses his new apprentice approaches, Eona finds herself at a center of a complex political intrigue that threatens the future of the whole country. She has to make alliances, she has to pick the side she wants to be on, she has to make some tough decisions.

Although I admit, I missed the romance and some tear-inducing moments in this book, the impeccable, magnificent world created by Alison Goodman completely captured my imagination and made me forget about the slight deficiencies in characterization. The world of the Empire of the Celestial Dragons is simply a magical mix of Chinese mythology and astrology, Feng Shui, Tai Chi meditation and various aspect of many Eastern cultures! It is is very ceremonious, very precise and measured. I particularly liked the whole concept of dragons that are essentially bodiless energies rather that fire-spitting reptiles. This alternative book cover is an epitome of how I imagine the world of Eon:

Isn't it gorgeous?

And don't let me forget to mention the gender-bender twists in this book. Not every YA novel has cross-dressers, transsexuals and eunuchs in it!

Can't wait for the sequel! Its cover is totally fierce

Profile Image for Cece ❀Rants, Raves &Reviews❀.
261 reviews1,041 followers
June 4, 2023
I have a love-hate relationship with this book. In the end I'm glad(??) that i read it

Eon grew up his entire life having a single thought literally beaten into their head "everything feminine is bad" Emotions are feminine therefore Eon should not feel. And to avoid more abuse Eon lives almost religiously by that one thought, resulting in a sociopath feel to the POV but thats neither here or there….

My main issue with this book is this:

If Eon had felt more of an inclination to male characterisics then this book wouldve been easier to read. But he didn't. They felt forced to be more male. And it fucking hurt to read. Because they were constantly told and shown that being female was bad. So it was a good book idea to overall show that being female is not lesser, but I didn't love how the author executed it with the MC's emotional processing and internal thoughts.

Eon kept making mistakes just constantly trying to be more manly. It was literally trial and error for half the book.

This isn't a cliche woman dressing up as male to manipulate a situation while secretly plotting shit. Eon literally CANT think about feminity because it's unacceptable to him, so he forces himself into male. And that broke my heart. It wasn't the journey of realizing they are trans*. It was a woman psychologically abused into a man.

And it also meant we, the audience, never saw that mental struggle or growth of character— Eon just took things as they were and didn't fight back NOT even in their inner dialogue


That being said, this book did a great job with some diverse characters.

I adored Lady Daya, biologically one gender but CHOSE to be female. She was so strong in her identity, I was in awe the whole time....honestly I wish we read about her instead of Eon but I'm hoping they finds the same acceptance&self-love

“I had no name, no true power. No hope.”
Another thing is that the author kept (almost painfully) forcing Eon to be an underdog. It was literarlly one thing after the other on how it would be impossible and so unrealistic for them to succeedbut somehow it will always worked out and isn't that amazing? I just got tired of it.
"Alert your men," Ryko said. He turned his head and I saw the rise of violence in his eyes. I wondered what he saw in mine. "Here we go."

There were some great lines and general great writing in this book. Secondary characterwise Ryko defintely top and I really curious about what it meant to be a Shadowman* more details book 2 please?

And the book went on and Eon actually began to feel emotions!! It was mostly anger... but still spunk and some actual characteristics !!
“A eunuch and a Contraire. How the gods would laugh,” she said bitterly.“The gods are already laughing,” I said. “How else could the future of an empire rest on my shoulders?”

I guess I love this book for the world building and the end product. I loved how it all turned out in the end for MC. In the end, they are a much stronger person. They learn how to fight, begin to accept their chosen identity, and feel like they found a purpose when before Eon was simply following whatever people said.

Because of this last sentence I am really looking forward to book 2 while secretly encouraging y’all to skip the first one and just go the sequel.
Profile Image for Samantha.
441 reviews16.8k followers
January 4, 2017
I was really struggling between 1 and 2 stars for this one so I'm compromising with 1.5 stars.
Profile Image for Shannon.
3,097 reviews2,382 followers
August 1, 2012
Aaaaahhhh, this was good ... though not without faults, and I think anyone who reads Eon will know exactly why I deducted a star. You will figure out early on why Eon is struggling, and it'll drive you crazy until she figures it out. The fact that Eon takes forever to realize the "big secret" was not something that ruined my enjoyment completely, but it definitely dampened a story that could have been perfect.

I started this book hot off the tail of Seraphina, not even realizing until I started writing this review that I had read two young adult fantasies with dragons back-to-back. Normally I'd read something different because I genre- and series-hop constantly, but Galla and CJ wanted to read this one together so I obliged (though I forged ahead a bit on my own ...) This book was very different from Seraphina though, and if I had to compare it to another book I would say it reminded me of a historical Cinder, but I also can't go without mentioning Mulan. I'm not saying this story isn't original or engrossing though: quite the opposite. Even though there are many books, movies, and historical events that Eon draws from, this book is special in spite of that fact. Goodman still manages to maintain an air of originality even with all of the stories that have come before it.

If you've known me for any length of time you're aware that I have an infatuation with all things Asian. I actually have a BA in Asian Studies, though I'll admit history wasn't my strongest suit; my concentration was in the Japanese language. It was still easy to recognize that Goodman pulled a great deal from many different historical events and cultural backgrounds. "Woman Script" is a reference to hiragana (fun fact: the first novel written in Japan was by a woman), I could see the shadow of the rise of the Tokugawa Shogunate, and Confucianism practically permeated every aspect of this world. Fear of foreigners, dethroning the emperor so the warriors could rule, women being powerless, this was all something that actually occurred. I also couldn't help but remember the early Joseon period, and since I went back and read some of the history, I see why Eon felt so familiar! Besides pulling from historical events, Goodman deftly weaves together elements from many different Asian cultures, blending things seamlessly. With all that being said, you don't need to have any knowledge of any Asian history to appreciate how much detail this author put into creating her world.

This story was fascinating, the characters were richly developed, and the world was lushly created. Not everything was as it seemed and I was honestly surprised at some of the twists the story took, plus Goodman managed to create a villain that I couldn't hate completely. If you're looking for another book with dragons after reading Seraphina or you want another young adult fantasy that takes place in an Asian setting like Cinder, definitely check this book out; Eon isn't perfect, but it's certainly a fun ride.
April 30, 2013
Creative storyline and a strong heroine. It's the first book in the series, so I felt some things were lacking, and there were some issues in the world building that bothered me; for the most part, this was an action-packed book that I enjoyed more than I expected to.

I remember reading the blurb, realizing that the protagonist was a cross-dressing female, and said to myself "No." I've got nothing against it, it is just not a genre of storytelling that interests me. my experience with this genre has been limited to Shakespeare (yuck) and manga (HanaKimi, also yuck. It doesn't help that I highly disliked all the characters in the live-action adaptations either, but I digress). Therefore, I had my doubts when confronted with this book.

It's no surprise given my background and cultural heritage, but I love stories based in Asia and Asian cultures. Generally, those have not been well-interpreted in books, particularly those written by Caucasian authors...they often come off as rather patronizing (think Hollywood action movies and The Last Samurai, and so I had many, many doubts coming into this book. Only under duress did I start reading this. Sometimes, one just find oneself in the midst of a reading drought. It's during those periods that I get out of my reading comfort zone, and oftentimes find myself truly enjoying something I didn't think I would. This book would be one of those situations.

The world building is a little bit strange to me. It's clearly a world based on the Far Eastern cultures, particularly China, Korea, and Japan, but I do get thrown off by the nomenclature. It's strange reading a book based on the Far East where the characters have Western sounding names. It's the equivalent of reading the Bible's list of angel names, getting used to Raphael and Michael and Uriel and then all of a sudden...the Angel Bob. It's a bit jarring and discordant to the system. That's a small complaint, though.

I found the character building somewhat lacking. Eon(a) of course, is awesome. Of course, one should hope so, since she is the main character, but all the other characters are portrayed somewhat superficially. We don't get too deep a glimpse into their character, what makes them tick, or get more of their personality besides the superficial. It makes sense within the context of the book, since Eona never really get to become too close to anyone, for fear of revealing who she is. I hope the next book will do a better part in that sense.

One character of whom I'm rather fond is Lady Dela, the Contraire. She reminds me of Nuriko from one of my favorite anime, Fushigi Yuugi (only uglier). I also like Lord Ido's character, his is one of the more well-developed ones, and I'm a sucker for ambiguously evil anti-heroes. Emperor Kygo is just dull...I think he's meant to be the love interest, but there's not much in him that interests me. Maybe in the next book.
Profile Image for Steph Sinclair.
461 reviews11.1k followers
May 15, 2011

Power. Glory. Honor. Reliability. Trust. Strength. Are these traits simply attributed to our gender? Does our gender determine who we are as people or who we can become as a person? For centuries women have struggled to pry themselves from underneath man's suppressive boot to claim their equality. For centuries being a woman was thought to mean you were weak, unable to defend yourself, better off in the kitchens.

This is the world 16 year-old Eon(a) lives in. She lives in an Asian culture were women can never hope to strive for the same position as a man: Dragoneye. Yet, that is exactly what she does. On the outside she is a 12 year-old boy named Eon, masquerading in a world she barely understands. not only is she working against her sexuality, but she also has a lame leg, a symbol of bad luck.

When I first started the novel, it started off slow for me. However, the world building was excellent. I can not help but to sit back and admire the amount of research Alison Goodman had done to describe Eona's world. From the descriptions of the clothing, buildings, and mannerisms, I could completely visualize everything. After I got to know Eona more, I started having a better appreciation for the book.

I really loved Eona and her determination to become a Dragoneye despite her limitations her culture had bestowed upon her. She believes that her femininity hinders her. As a result, she does her best to suppress it at every given opportunity by taking drugs to stop her menstrual cycle. She finds that she has been thrust into a world of politics with people depending heavily on her power. A power she has no idea how to manifest.

And that my GoodReader friends brings us to the bad parts. Oh, c'mon. You knew it was coming.

Eona, Eona, Eona...Why are you so slow? Why must you frustrate me so?


I had long figured out the secret behind how to call your dragon. Yet you were up the creek without a paddle or just a lost little kitten.

Find your brain while you're at it, m'kay?

However, all was not lost with Eona's slow uptake. Once people started finding out her secret, the book moved along way faster. And by the end of the novel, I felt myself very excited for the sequel.

Eona had tremendous growth in this book. She went from suppressing her womanhood to embracing it. This book had the feminist in me crying out and squealing like a wittle fan girl. It was awesome.


And for some strange reason Annie Oakley and Frank Butler sang to me the entire time I read this book.

Anything you can do,
I can do better.
I can do anything
Better than you.

No, you can't.
Yes, I can. No, you can't.
Yes, I can. No, you can't.
Yes, I can,
Yes, I can!

I can't wait to see what Eona CAN do in the next book!

More reviews and more at Cuddlebuggery Book Blog.
Profile Image for Lightreads.
641 reviews534 followers
August 2, 2011
If I hadn’t been reading this book on a very expensive bit of technology, I would have hurled it against a wall. I believe my exact comment, upon reaching a particular moment of infamy towards the end was, and I quote, “what the fucking fuck was that fuckery?” I have all the feelings about this book. And so I share them. (Which is why you guys like me, don’t even try to lie).

Right, so, this is a fantasy about a girl posing as a boy in not!ancient China, and she impresses bonds with an ancient dragon who hasn’t been seen in 500 years, and there is imperial intrigue and stuff.

I would probably be less furious if this book were incompetent. But the thing is, it’s not. Its treatment of the ‘girl posing as a boy’ fantasy trope is genuinely interesting. This is not one of those books where a girl proves her worth by being able to pass for a boy, that being the important measuring stick, you know. And it has these great moments where our protagonist reflects on what living as male for years actually means, how eventually she’s doing more than just binding her breasts and wearing pants, that – and she doesn’t have the language for this, but it’s what she means – that her gender identity is complicated. And one of her friends in the book is an actual transperson. And the whole thing is done while maintaining the universe-appropriate and really medieval idea of gender, of woman’s place, etc. Hard to do, and parts of it genuinely interested and impressed me.

But then. Oh but then.

I had . . . inklings. The sense of thunder rumbling ominously in the distance. The lurking suspicion that something was going to go very wrong. Yeah, that interesting stuff Goodman did with gender even though she’s working in a constrained medieval framework? When it comes to disability, she just brought the medieval beliefs and called it good. Hint: it’s not.

Let me tell you what I learned from this book – from the protagonist’s culturally embedded narration, and far more damningly from the structure of the narrative and the meta implications. Disability is a curse. It means you are ugly and unlovable, and that no one should touch you. Absolutely no one should desire you. But if you are extra special, and you do everything right, maybe you’ll acquire power. And the way you’ll know you have is your disability will be magically cured! Because that way you’re finally worthy! And you are finally a whole person (being disabled being synonymous with being less than a person), and now you are not untouchable anymore! Disability is also a metaphor for being unwhole and not yourself -- it'll be imposed when you start pretending to be someone else, and then magically taken away again when you stop!

And I haven’t read the sequel, and do not plan to, but I’m going to take a wild stab in the dark and guess it also means you can have a romance now.

And for God’s sake, please don’t anyone try telling me yet again that this sort of thing is okay in fantasy novels, it’s a different world and a different culture, and it makes sense for them to think that way. Yeah, and who designed that world? Who chose which societal biases to import and which to leave behind? Who designed a story that validated and supported every horrible and ablest thing the protagonist thought about herself?

Secondary world fantasy is not an excuse for something this offensive. There aren’t any excuses for something like this.
Profile Image for Mayim de Vries.
577 reviews884 followers
July 17, 2018
Essentially, Eon: Dragoneye Reborn is a book about:

a girl pretending to be a boy

indeed forced to hide her true identity under the threat of death

in the constraints of a hierarchic Eastern-style society

but pursuing her path of destiny regardless of the cost

There are also

some dragons

a wise emperor

and his handsome son

some gender issues

and lots of action that essentially backfires

untill our main protagonist finds her true self

Before you ask: No, Eon: Dragoneye Reborn is NOT a retelling of Mulan. Do not get me wrong, I love Mulan and as embarrassing as it is, I know it nearly by heart. And yet, I will be the first one to admit that Eona is not Mulan and her story is much richer and much darker than a Disney treat. It is not so two-dimensional, it is also wiser and leaves you with uneasy questions rather than straightforward answers.

Yes, read it. The sooner, the better.

The story continues in Eona: The Last Dragoneye ★★★☆☆
Profile Image for Justine.
1,158 reviews312 followers
September 27, 2017
Enjoyable and solid story, with excellent worldbuilding and interesting magic system - plus dragons! This book also falls into that somewhat narrow category of YA fantasy suitable for older readers that doesn't have a romantic sub-plot. Honestly, the characters in this story are far too busy keeping mortal secrets and involving themselves in various plots to worry about romance.

The pacing of the story is very good and I found it quite tense in many places. It's an entertaining read given depth because of the interesting characters, not just Eon, the struggling Dragoneye who is hiding the fact that she is actually a woman, but also supporting characters such as Lady Dela, a transgendered Court Lady who becomes a faithful friend and ally to Eon.

My only complaint is that the difficulty Eon struggles with for much of the book seemed somewhat obvious in its resolution, but that didn’t really detract from my enjoyment of the story overall. The ending to this first book is intense and exciting, and made me want to pick up the conclusion to the duology fairly soon.
Profile Image for carol..
1,576 reviews8,238 followers
June 27, 2012

Two and a half stars. It was okay, and I might get around to reading the second half. I should probably do so before giving an evaluation, as it appears it's more a duo than a stand-alone book.

I enjoyed the pace of the first 75 or 100 pages, which some critics might label "useless worldbuilding." I felt like it was building the world Eon lived in, from the Master's house to the city, showing the different types of adversity faced, and setting up an 'overcome major adversity' plot.

I also wondered if perhaps I am just a bit old-fashioned for the current young adult scene. I've read a wide variety of fantasy, but it seems to me that 1) one's master being killed, 2) being spiritually raped, 3) being almost physically raped, 4) the emperor overthrown, 5)a best friend slowly poisoned and losing his mind, 6) witnessing a woman being killed, along with 7) her infant son, as well as the plain old- fashioned disappointment of not being able to quite succeed in the goal you trained at for four years, was excessively violent and overwhelming.

On a positive note, I loved having a transgendered character, and thought Lady Dela was one of the most interesting, likeable characters in the book. Kudos to Goodman for integrating her as a human and not an 'issue.'
Profile Image for Twila.
130 reviews122 followers
December 9, 2019
I could not stop him. He was my emperor. My lord. My master. His will was mine.
No. Never again. My will was my own.

How refreshing this was.

In Eon, every year a different Dragoneye becomes the ascendant, and an apprentice is chosen by the dragon. A Dragoneye is the human link to an energy dragon's power.

There's the Ox Dragon, Goat Dragon, Tiger Dragon, Monkey Dragon, Rabbit Dragon, Rooster Dragon, Snake Dragon, Dog Dragon, Rat Dragon, Pig Dragon, Horse Dragon and Dragon Dragon (Mirror Dragon). Sounds ridiculous, I know.

This year, it's the Rat Dragon's turn. Eon is a Dragoneye candidate, and it doesn't help that she has a twisted leg.
But girls are forbidden to the use of dragon magic.

Women have no place in the world of the dragon magic. It is said they bring corruption to the art and do not have the physical strength or depth of character needed to commune with an energy dragon. It is also thought that the female eye, too practiced in gazing at itself, cannot see the truth of the energy world. [pp. 2]

So, this is where the whole girl masquerading as a boy shtick comes in.
But the true jewel in this novel is Eon's conflict to embrace herself. "Eon" struggles, burying "Eona", and never allows the female to show.

Eon even takes drugs to supress the female 'moon' energy and enhance the male 'sun' energy.
I really appreciated the exploration of gender dynamics. It's intensely layered and detailed for any novel, let alone YA.

Eon really excels at world building. It has a magic system inspired by feng shui and Chinese astrology, with a blend of Asian cultures that was beautifully developed.
I loved how the cycle of the ascendant dragons and their Dragoneye's worked. The details of magic and how it was used was very fascinating.
But I don't think I ever imagined dragons with BEARDS!


I loved the battle scenes. The sword forms practiced by the Dragoneyes were very clear to me and easy to visualize.

The power plays and struggles were plotted very convincingly. This novel was very thorough, and I have to say that some of the details were lost on me. I have a very short attention span and I normally space out while reading, but I don't usually get lost. Maybe there was too much info-dumping in this book. I dunno, but if I missed one page, I didn't really understand what was happening anymore.

I had to re-read a lot of passages. That wasn't fun.

And is it just me, or did the gruelling ceremony to become ascendant remind anyone of Kung Fu Panda? It was like when Po became the Dragon Warrior, but anyways :D

I wish I could have seen more of the various dragons in action. They were such a fresh and unique aspect that I wanted to see more of them. I also wish that the book could have delved into the mystery of why the Mirror Dragon was missing for 500 years and what happened to the last Dragoneye. I hopefully find some answers in Eona: The Last Dragoneye.

Overall, I loved the fresh setting and I would definitely recommend this to fantasy fans.

Profile Image for Mags.
353 reviews130 followers
January 10, 2023
Slow start but amazing ... ohh yes ...

I mean, if you thought a girl with dragons was cool ...

You haven't read about EONA ...

Because first she was passing as a boy

And then she became

Controlling this

And right now, I'm downloading the sequel Eona

And if you are mexican ... let me tell you this book will remind you of

IG @cafecitoxlibros
Profile Image for Choko.
1,221 reviews2,598 followers
June 27, 2016
*** 4 ***

A buddy read with my homies at BB&B!

This was one very beautifully written, very engaging, but very frustrating book of the Fantasy genre variety. The story takes you into a wonderfully created world, heavily Asian influenced, closest to the Chinese traditions during the feudal period, and the author has the perfect prose to make it feel authentic and real.

We get to meet young Eon, a bond servant in the house of a one-time Dragoneye master who is preparing Eon to follow in his steps... Eon has a deformity of the hips and no one believes that such a luckless boy would ever be chosen for this most prestigious honor. Luckily, at the end, only the Dragon knows whom and why they choose for their human vessel. You see, the 12 celestial Dragons are creatures of energy, who in past millennia had made a deal with the humans to enter into a partnership with those they choose, in order to control the major typhoons, storms, and other wild natural energies which threaten humanity in the Empire. Those human boys, for tradition dictates that only boys are good enough for this blessed service, are elevated to a position in court of much influence and political power.

Eon is a cripple, smaller than most, and overall, quite pathetic and hopeless. Imagine everyone's surprise when the rarest of all dragons chooses him!!! And this should make him the happiest young man in the world, right? This would be true, if only Eon and his master were not keeping a secret, which could condemn them to death and threaten the political stability in the land. ...

Eon's secret is revealed very early on in the book and we spend the majority of the time wondering when it will be discovered and how much damage would follow. The plot starts to unveil slowly in the beginning, the second half of the book things start unraveling faster and my nerves were barely able to take it, because I spend 40% of the end of the book wanting to grab Eon, shake him, and scream at him about the poor choices and horrible decisions the character kept making over and over!!!! The reader could clearly see what was going on, but the character was blind, deaf and dumb to all things logical all the way until the last chapter!!!! Soooo very FRUSTRATING!!!!

Usually, when I book infuriates me that much, I end up rating it not higher than 3 Stars, but it was very well written, very imaginative, and it made me totally emotionally invested, which is the hallmark of a good book to me. I know I will not forget what it is about in several months, so yes, it is worth the 4 Star rating for sure!!!!

I will recommend this to all those who love the Fantasy genre and some more lyrical writing. There is some emotional angst, but it is not unbearable:-))

Now I wish all Happy Reading and may your imagination expand with every book you encounter!!!
Profile Image for Cassi aka Snow White Haggard.
459 reviews159 followers
July 31, 2011
Give this a 3 star after much thought. I enjoyed it, but my love of girls pretending to be boys cannot overcome Eona's cluelessness. I have to take away some demerits to encourage less stupidity in the future. I'm sure you understand.

I liked it and plan to read the sequel BUT I wanted Eon to be smarter. Seriously I figured out everything pretty much immediately and she was all like "AHHH I don't know & I don't want anyone to know I don't know" for like half the book. And I was like "DUDE I don't even know anything about the world you live in AND EVEN I KNOW." She seemed to create half of her own problems by ignoring the obvious answer.

Maybe the MC I've been reading lately are just super smart (Georgia in Feed, Alexia in Heartless, intelligent women) and I'm asking too much of Eon/Eona. But I wanted an Alanna, a Daine, a Kelandry and she was not that. She was a pawn in a powerful game and I'm not sure I should hold that against her but I kinda do because she kept letting herself be a pawn even when she didn't have to.

For an EXCELLENT explanation of why this book got 3 starts I'll point you to Flannery's review which has a bar graph. Doesn't bar graphs make you feel warm and fuzzy inside? What they don't? Weirdo!

Profile Image for Hailey (Hailey in Bookland).
614 reviews87.8k followers
February 10, 2017
I wanted to love it, but I just couldn't. The lack of explanations just killed it for me. This book had no setting, though I'm assuming it's China. But it's never mentioned, and to me that's a pretty fundamental aspect of a book. The plot was really quite cool and exciting once you got more into the book, but it took me forever to get there because it was pretty slow and I kept having to reread things to try and understand what was going on. Not sure if I'll end up picking up book 2.
Profile Image for Michael.
1,231 reviews115 followers
December 29, 2008
The success of the Harry Potter series with both children and adults has opened a lot of doors in the fantasy genre. Publishers have issued a plethora of a new series and stories intended to capture the imagination and passion of readers in a simliar way to the stories of the young boy wizard. While a lot of these new fantasy stories have imitated what J.K. Rowling did with the Harry Potter novels, very few of them have really set the imagination on fire with an new, fascinating fantasy universe like J.K. Rowling did seven novels and one short story collection ago.

Which is what makes Alison Goodman's "Eon: Dragoneye Reborn" such a treat. It's a new fantasy novel, written for young adult but which should find great crossover appeal with adults, that captures the magic and wonder I felt picking up the first Potter novel so many years ago. "Eon" borrows some elements from the Harry Potter (and every other fantasy) universe, setting up a young underdog hero with potential for greatness undergoing extensive training against overwhelming odds. "Eon" is the story of a young girl, in the running to be one of the twelve dragoneyes. The Dragoneyes are the link between the spiritual world of the dragons and the physical universe. To be chosen is a great honor--and one generally reserved only for males.

Eon is a female, secretly going through the training and testing as a male. Her master saw great potential in her and went along with the ruse to win back power, favor and fortune for his house. The gamble pays off in spades when Eon is chosen not just to be that year's dragoneye, but chosen by the mysterious Mirror Dragon to be its dragoneye. Before you know it, Eon is plunged into rigorous training and the world of politics surrounding the dragoneyes and the emperor.

Goodman's novel is a fascinating, complex and entertaining one that will keep the pages turning. One of the fascinating aspects of the story is watching Goodman ground the "Dragoneye" universe a bit in ours, basing the political and social system on that of fuedal Japan and China but making it come alive in its own interesting and unique ways. A good deal of the first half of the novel is spent on world-buidling, but it's done in such an authentic, interesting way, building the character of Eon and those around her that it all feels natural and authentic. And the pieces put into play in the first half begin to quickly play dividends in the second as revelations come fast and furious, all leading to the novel's stunning and compelling conclusion.

"Dragoneye" is the first of a two-part story set in Goodman's universe. Thankfully, Goodman is able to resolve enough of the storylines to keep readers satisfied and make this a complete novel, while creating a cliffhanger and situation that will leave you wanting to pick up the next installment as soon as possible and find out what happens next.

"Eon: Dragoneye Reborn" is an entertaining, fascinating and fun fantasy novel that will delight both young adult and adult readers.
Profile Image for Priscilla.
146 reviews9,675 followers
December 4, 2013
AMAZING! Alison Goodman creates a fully-realized world filled with dragons, magic, ancient customs, and political warfare. Our main character is Eon, a candidate to become apprentice dragoneye, an honour bestowed to only the worthiest of men. TWIST – Eon, is actually Eona, a 16 year old girl, who if she is found out, will be killed.

Initial thoughts:
1. The plot is amazing! Eon is faced with obstacle after obstacle. When you think it couldn't get worse, it does!
2. The backstory, and mythology is on point. Full of detail! No plot holes here.
3. Interesting characters. From Eon, to her master, Ryko, and Lady Dela. Love em' all!
4. Writing, holy crap. Wonderful! Goodman imbues all of your senses. From sight, sound, and touch, but as well as smell and taste. The jasmine, and incense... it's like you're there!

So glad to read a 5 star book! It's been awhile :) Can't wait for Eona! Full book review coming soon!
Profile Image for Maja (The Nocturnal Library).
1,013 reviews1,922 followers
December 31, 2012
3.5 stars
I have a feeling I will be telling my grandchildren long stories about my struggles with this book. Eon (both the book and the character) did not make it easy for me to like them, oh no. Instead, I constantly had to battle my desire to abandon them in favor of something easier to read, or a more likable heroine at the very least.

Sometimes, when a book is extremely popular and well-loved by everyone in the known universe and possibly beyond, I dig in my heels and simply refuse to read it for no good reason. This was the case with Eon – it has been sitting on my shelf for ages*, and the more people talked about it, the more reluctant I was to read it. So I kept postponing it over and over again until it became just another book on my to-read list I stopped noticing altogether. It probably would have stayed there were it not for my friend Catie who Made Me Do It over at The Readventurer. The challenge was just the push I needed; this isn’t a book that should be missed.

However, to say that it wasn’t what I expected would be an understatement. I honestly thought it would be more juvenile and with everyone talking about Eona, I thought she would be a character to admire. Boy was I ever wrong.

Eona’s only way out of salt farms and abject poverty is to learn Dragon Magic and become the next Dragoneye apprentice, but girls aren’t allowed to even enter the selection, which is why she’s spent the last four years living as a boy. The only person who knows the truth is her Master and teacher, a former Dragoneye, and the secret could easily kill them both. When the sword ceremony doesn’t go as planned and Eon ends up in the middle of dangerous Imperial games and with powerful enemies to boot, the secret becomes much bigger, and the stakes much higher. Suddenly, destiny of an entire empire rests on Eon’s shoulders.

The double nature of Eon/Eona does not end with gender alone. He (and I’ll stick with he here because he was consistently male until the very end) is a character built on contradictions, so much so that it makes him hard to describe. His ability to live a double life, especially in spotlight where every wrong move means a certain death, speaks of great bravery and prowess. And yet, when his goals were accomplished (and then some), said bravery quickly turned into outright cowardice under pressure.

"I did not understand this idea of equality. There was rank even amongst slaves; it was the nature of men."

What saved this book for me (and what could save any book for me) is the extremely intricate worldbuilding. A gorgeous blend of Eastern cultures, Eon’s world is cruel but captivating, exhilarating and rich in detail. It can be a bit too overwhelming at times but I am very patient with worldbuilding which made Dragoneye Reborn a perfect read for me, at least in one very important way.

In truth, secondary characters were far more interesting than Eon himself. The enlightened, almost kind Emperor won me over quickly, as did the rest of his family, not to mention Lady Dela, a woman in a man’s body, and her faithful bodyguard, eunuch Ryko. Romance is sparse in Eon, but hints of a relationship between these two, however improbable it may seem, more than made up for it. Watching them dance around each other and their feelings for each other was sweet and strange and exhilarating and entirely unforgettable.

Based on the reviews I’ve read so far, Eona is a far better read than its predecessor, and I am very much looking forward to it. While I didn’t much care for the heroine herself, there are many characters whose fates I absolutely have to learn.

* Hah! See? I didn’t write “eons”, I am VERY mature.

Profile Image for Lucy.
102 reviews1,814 followers
May 11, 2011
I think a copy of Eon ought to be on most school library bookshelves. It's an interesting exploration of gender roles and expectations, about finding your true self and that ineffable identity all of us have somewhere beneath the surface. Gender and identity are explored from different angles with the main story and one intertwining side character. Eon deals with the pressure of pretending to be something he isn't, of all the things he gave up when the choice to pretend to be a boy was made for him. The secondary character of Lady Dela, who is considered dual gendered with born male with female energies, deals with the public side and some of the possible social consequences of different gender identity. Neither of them chose their paths. Lady Dela was simply born the way she is and Eon was forced into the subterfuge.

It's definitely a high fantasy novel with a lot of world building. Fans of various Asian cultures will either be delighted with Alison Goodman's world or find flaws in it that come from a passionate love affair with the cultures she tries to emulate. For me she was a success, but my knowledge of Asian culture is probably heavily pop-culture influenced so take my opinion there with a grain of salt. You can trust me that the world building is thorough. There are long information dumps in places, but it's not so bad because it's all pretty interesting. Yeah, as a reader you're forced to swallow some of the world building in weird places with thick content, but it's never really that painful.

My only complaints about the story are how long I knew what was going on as opposed to how long it took Eon to figure out what was going on. It's pretty frustrating to know all the answers and to want to shake them into the character. You might be saying 'oh you're saying you're too smart for this. You probably figure out complicated mystery novels on page five.' No, seriously. I don't. Most of the time I don't try. I just roll with the story. The answers to everything Eon is asking and how many mistakes he's making are really really obvious.

There's also Disappearing Parent Syndrome in this novel, but it's one of those cases where it works. Eon's journey needed to be solo so I won't complain. I'm hopeful Eona will learn more about her family in the companion novel.

The prose is clean. The pages to this admittedly thick book felt mostly like world building and then those long pages of wanting to strangle Eon for not getting to the obvious answers faster. I really recommend it for high school aged teenagers. I think it's one of those books that will make you a better person if you read it young enough. There's nothing like spending five hundred pages in the head of a character having heavy gender confusion to make you more understanding and, of course, the fantasy adventure makes it just a fun read.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Ashley.
2,780 reviews1,776 followers
November 23, 2015
I am a huge dum-dum.

During the five years I worked for Barnes & Noble, I got to read quite a few books gratis. Like, not only would we get to check out books (and Nooks! with unlimited ebooks!) from the store like it was a frickin' library, but we also got ARCs and pre-publication copies (the ones that have been copy-edited) of books so we could talk them up to customers. I will admit that I took shameless advantage of all of these privileges, and I miss them quite a lot (although I do NOT miss retail). Long story short, I received a pre-publication of this book SUCH A LONG TIME AGO, and for some unfathomable reason, I never read it. Like, not even a single urge, even though it sounded like something I would adore.

I am currently KICKING MYSELF for this. This book was so good!

Eon has been training for years for the chance to be chosen as a Dragoneye apprentice, one of twelve boys who bond with the magical spirit dragons that protect their Empire. Every twelve years (one for each year in the Dragon cycle), the Dragon coming into power that year chooses a new boy to bond with, who becomes the Dragoneye in training. This year is the year of the Rat Dragon, and everything in Eon's life is riding on his being chosen. His master has staked his own future and that of his household's on Eon being chosen, and if he's not, Eon will be doomed to a life of servitude and de-humanizing treatment, due to his being a cripple in a world where cripples are signs of ill-luck. Only Eon's status as a potential apprentice keeps him in his position of safety. Even as it is, half the people he sees ward themselves against evil when he walks by.

Oh, and also, Eon is also secretly Eona, a girl in disguise.

This book is YA fantasy, but it definitely doesn't fall into the standard YA tropes. There is no love story. The underlying themes of this book all tie into Eona's search for her own identity as a person, and as she learns to navigate her The secondary characters are fantastic, and Goodman does some really interesting things with them. There is also a trans woman in this book, which I did not see coming at all, and she plays a very significant role.

Mostly, the book is full of smart political intrigue, nerve-wracking conflict, and really satisfying character stuff. The world is well-developed (the author's note states that it was originally inspired by Japanese and Chinese culture, but eventually became its own thing as she was writing it). It's ridiculously well-paced and really hard to put down. My only complaint was that there was a pivotal twist around the 2/3 mark that I totally saw coming, and that Eona was completely oblivious to, and things she was doing to actively make the problem worse. It made her look stupid that she couldn't see the cause and effect, but that was literally my only complaint in the book, and even that can be explained by the extreme stress she's under and her almost total lack of outside support. The book does lean in to a couple of fantasy tropes, but they are ones that I love, and everything around them is so well done, it doesn't matter.

I'm super excited to see how this story ends, and I'm going to start book two (it's a duology, so it's the final book in the story) as soon as I click 'Save' on this review.

[4.5 stars]
Profile Image for jennifer.
96 reviews
June 19, 2011
Well this was almost a 4 or 5 star book - then, as you will see, it completely deteriorated into something just abysmal.

Also, this is a *spoiler*, and an explicit, review.

This was nearly a great book until the end, which then ruined a 500 page story. I am so sick of the abysmal portrayal of women's and girl's oppressive experiences at the hands of men. Especially the romanticization of violence, especially sexual violence, molestation, and rape of women and girls - from teachers/mentors making advances onto their child/teen students, all the way to women and girls "forgiving" and "befriending" the men who have attempted, or have actually, raped or molested them. This book has the gall to end a 500 page story of a strong female who comes to learn she is the lost companion to a lost dragon spirit, who it is revealed is female (which is unheard of) and the queen of all the dragons, with her spiritual rape and almost physical rape by a male dragon companion, and then with her subsequently sparing his life, taking pity on him, feeling compassion for him, and even asking him if he wants to run away with her so he won't be hurt by the leader of the evil army he was supporting. SERIOUSLY???

Why exactly are women and girls suppose to forgive rapists, child molesters, and those who oppress, use, and objectify them? Why are they to act as if nothing really happened and that the whole horrific ordeal is actually about redeeming the rapist/oppressor? Which they are then required to do to stay a "good" person? It's a despicable falsehood that keeps being perpetuated over and over in books for girls, especially in books about strong female characters. Not a coincidnece I am sure. It is once again society always, and only, being concerned with, and protecting, men their needs, their desires, and their actions - leaving women and girls yet again as men's objects - from sex object to redeemer of their evils, women and girls always portrayed as conduits for men. Even in their own attempts to free themselves from oppression. Disgusting.

And I am truly angered, frustrated, and saddened that it was done in a book with so much potential to change that. The beginning weaved such an interesting, rich, and detailed story and world. What a waste.

I would not recommend this book, nor will I read the sequel. If, by some chance, someone wanted to read or recommend this book, I would caution that it is for a VERY mature reader (18+ - even though it's billed as young adult), as the threat of rape, the attempted rapes, and the rape dynamic, as well as descriptions of women being raped in the ending war, is drawn out, for many chapters - at least 100 or so pages. There are also some descriptions of violent fighting and killing.
Profile Image for Phrynne.
3,333 reviews2,145 followers
October 14, 2016
This is a pretty chunky book for young adult but it was a fairly easy read. Fast paced and frequently very tense, it kept this reader engrossed for some good quality reading time whilst flying half way round the world.
The world building was very Oriental which fitted well with the theme of dragons. These were rather amazing dragons too and the world around them was very well thought out. The main character is a girl pretending to be a boy so there is a lot of information about gender roles but I was not sure that it was very important in the long run.
What was important was the terrific story, the tension which was almost too tense at times and the ending which leads straight in to the next book. I am looking forward to it :)
Profile Image for Fafa's Book Corner.
513 reviews306 followers
December 30, 2018
Review posted on Fafa's Book Corner!

Beware spoilers ahead!

Eon: Dragoneye Reborn was read during Tome Topple. And for The Dream Thieves December theme Missed TBR.

Trigger warning: Physical violence, bullying, harassment, drug addiction, mention of war, death, grief, misogynistic society, gory fights, critical injuries from battle, ableism, transphobia, disability cured via magic, mention of salt mines, mention of slavery, abuse of power via authority, taking control of one's body, and rape.

Eon is a twelve year old boy with a lame leg. Eon is hoping to become a Dragoneye so his master can become rich again. There's just one small problem. Eon is Eona a sixteen year old girl. And girl's can't be Dragoneye's. It is punishable by death. If the council finds out Eona and her master will be punished. On top of all that there is a war brewing. How will Eona manage to balance her lies and survive the imperial court?

After reading The Dark Day's Club by the same author I really wanted to read more off her works'. The Eon series has such rave reviews that I decided to give it a shot. I am really happy to say that I enjoyed it!

I am really happy that I read this! The book begins with a prologue was explains some of the world and magic system. There is a map of the palace, and dragon charts. Which lists each dragon and their dragoneye. The book is narrated in first person limited following Eona's point of view.

I really enjoyed the world building and the magic system! It was very unique and interesting. Also the dragon aspect was so cool! Eona is still learning so not everything was explained. Particularly the bound with a dragon. The power that the Dragoneye's have is explored but again to a degree.

The beginning was a bit dense as everything is being introduced to the reader. It did feel like an adult fantasy for that reason. Once I got into it, the book flew! This was so fast paced and I wasn't expecting that.

I enjoyed the political intrigue! It's very rare to find well done political intrigue. When Eona gets to the palace it's a constant game of lies and a bit of cat and mouse with one of the Dragoneye's. Whose name is Lord Ido. It's get even messier when Eona make's some friends and gets dragged into a battle of sorts. There is a bit of power imbalance which was is discussed multiple times throughout the book. 

I really liked Eona's character! She's very unique from some of the characters you read about now-a-days. She's compassionate but ruthless as she's backed into a corner most of the time. Eona was quite intelligent and very mature for her age. I think the author did a good job with Eona's leg. I liked reading about her inner struggles. Particularly her fear off being herself and accepting her female side. With the help off her friends and her dragon Eona comes to accept herself. Her character development was truly excellent!

Eona is close to Chart and Rilla. Chart is disfigured and can't speak. Due to this he is picked on quite a bit. Rilla is Chart's mother. Barron is Eona's master who she trained under. Barron bought Eona from a salt mine when he realized she could see all the dragons' energies. She has a complicated relationship with him. Regardless they both still care for each other.

Eona becomes friends with Ryko, Lady Dela, and Prince Kygo. Also some of the dragoneye's and their apprentices. Lady Dela spends her time navigating Eona through all the political intrigue and Ryko is tasked with guarding Lady Dela. Lady Dela is a transgender female. Prince Kygo and Eona become friends for mutual interests. There are hinting's of a romance between the two. Nothing becomes of it in this installment.

All these characters shape Eona. And grow from one-another. I really liked the relationship's she had with all of them! My favourite is Lady Dela. She was such a fun character but knowledgeable as well.

I also liked all the plot twist's and foreshadowing you get throughout the book! Some of it was predictable. Though I still found it entertaining. Truly this book kept me on the edge of my seat. 

I did have some problems with this book. I felt that Lady Dela wasn't done that well. There are several times when Eona will mention that Lady Dela would sometimes look like a male or have the strength of a male. Which didn't feel that well done to me. Once Eona has truly bounded with her dragon her leg is 'fixed'. Magically she's cured. And it does send the wrong message.

Overall I thoroughly enjoyed this book! I am looking forward to reading the sequel. I highly recommend this series!
Profile Image for Liz.
600 reviews504 followers
January 3, 2016
Back when this book was released I had abandoned it after some 50 pages because it had reminded me on another dragon-book which I found much better ( Nihal of the Land of the Wind), now after giving it another chance I must admit that it differs a lot from the other one, though they do have some obvious parallels.
I did enjoy it and I will read the sequel but there were many aspects of the book that irked me.

What I liked:
The characters. There was just the right amount of different characters introduced with very individual struggles, well-rounded, who all contributed something to the plot and Eona's development. Thankfully, all of them were memorable and interesting enough for me to form the desire to know what will happen to them in the next book.
The setting and writing. The world Eona lives in is described quite vividly. I felt like there was just enough world-building to feel drawn to this world that is ruled by politics and magic equally. Also, the power-struggle was well-developed and made a lot of sense though there is a counterpoint to this one too.

What I didn't like:
Predictability. My my... I saw it coming. It? Let me explain - everything. Maybe because I've read the same or a similar trope in many other YA Fantasy books, maybe because it was simply obvious. I personally think it is more the second than the first. Because - doh - the answers were right there and Eona created half of the problems herself because she couldn't just stop and think. So no surprises for me in this one.
Eona. Damn was this girl stupid. Weak, easy to manipulate and intimidate, overall rather spineless, not very bright, at times overdramatic. All in all, emotional whenever she should have stopped and thought for a moment. Oh, and her inner monologue was annoying. She let both her Master and Ido and Kygo control her, treat her like nothing. Ugh.
Dragons? Magic? Like, it was too easy. The catastrophe at the end was a bit weird. Eleven mighty Lords with their apprentices and the villian got rid of them quite easily. Furthermore, there was not enough about the dragons for my liking and generally lots of questions with few answers. Perhaps they will be answered in the sequel, but it is not like the author didn't have enough pages to provide at least some explanations.

To summarize - Enjoyable enough, but not a book I will come back too. It could have been better if the author had put more into the logic and plot rather than Eona's (unnecessary) emotional rollercoaster.
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