Wednesday, 5 November 2014

The Land of Dragor Book One / The Gift of Charms by Julia Suzuki // Review

Luckily for Julia Suzuki, who kindly offered me a free transcript of her new dragon-themed children's book The Gift of Charms for review back in August; I really enjoyed it. Unluckily for Julia, it is now November. Sorry about that, if you're reading. I got around to it eventually!

HOW CUTE WAS THIS BOOK. The Gift of Charms covers the coming of age of the main character Yoshiko, through everything from learning how to "make flames," friends, and take to the skies. You or your child will learn a little, although nothing too complex, about dragon history and the dragon clans (separated by their colour and abilities) which exist within Dragor. Adorable, right? Within a few chapters I was actually envious that I was never read stories about dragons as a child. Saying that, I don't think at all that this book should be read to a child, as much as by a child. I think the language, vocabulary and writing style in this book is such that it could be read independently as a child's first full-length book; if they are at an age to take this step. The cover illustration is completely charming and something I think a little girl or boy would be very proud to own.

Having grown up watching films like Eragon, TV shows like Game of Thrones (though that's more of a recent development), and playing games like Spyro, the appeal of dragons to my generation seems almost limitless. I have a feeling books like this and those to follow in The Land of Dragor series are going to stir up those same feelings of admiration in the next generation of children - especially with the possibility of dragsaurs (evil hybrid dinosaurs and dragons) cropping up later in the series. Suzuki and the publishers insist that the book exists for people "of all ages" to read, and whilst I as a seventeen year old girl vastly apprieciated the opportunity to read such a lovely nostalgia-inducing story, I maintain that it should and probably will be predominantly read by children around eight and ten years old. Yoshiko himself at the beginning of the book is "ten winters old".

My thanks go out to Julia for giving me the opportunity to review a book like this among all my gruelling college texts.

Rating for those my age: 2 stars
Rating for children: 3 1/2 stars

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