Page Count: 450
I won this book from the First-reads program on Goodreads.
The world is no longer a safe place when Kasumi, a Japanese princess from a village few know exist, and Sara, a teen from America, find each other. Kasumi is Bushi, with a thousand years of proud Samurai heritage. Sara is a politician’s daughter with ten years of practice as a spoiled brat. When terrorists attack, they find themselves bonded together by birth and battle as the two girls learn to fight together against an unknown adversary. Recovering from her wounds in the mountains of Japan, Sara begins to discover who she is as a person, and adopts the ancient ways from the one she comes to call her sister. With these “Dragon Twins” at the forefront, the samurai of ancient Japan are once again called upon as a determined Sara faces her father’s scrutiny and brings her troops into battle on the ground and in the skies of Washington, D.C.
I entered to win this because it sounded like a really intriguing concept and not to mention the name sounds cool. I really don’t like giving bad reviews so I’m trying to be gentle when I say this was a bit of a disappointment. The copy I received appears to be a final print, yet the editing for this was not all that great. There were spelling, grammatical, formatting, and punctuation errors all through out. The author has commented that he submitted this without professional review at first and that he is (was) working on correcting the issues with the publisher. I’m not sure if this will be done I feel the need to let you know of the errors, but be aware the copy you get my not contain these errors. The formatting issue will effect your reading at times due to it not leaving the proper amount of spacing between the start of a new section. So you will suddenly skip forward in time without warning.
Editing aside, the story itself needs some work. It has potential to be a good novel and the story overall is fairly interesting, but somethings just didn’t feel right. The characters themselves are interesting and have some depth to them, but I feel the speech is a little forced at times and switches between informal and formal with an uncomfortable frequency. The first thought I had about the writing style was along the lines of “fan-fic” status; it came off as a interesting story but written with a lack of details in speech, character development, etc. A lot of the story line did come off as “that would never happen” but as it is fiction it’s always hard for me to decide when it’s okay for that to take place. I did enjoy the scenery created for the village as well as them living an older and ‘outdated’ lifestyle because it sounds truly beautiful not to mention relaxing. As I mentioned before, the speech was very hard to relate to and even embarrassing to read it at times. I’m not shy about book content but when a character is overly naive I become embarrassed for them and it makes me want to put the book down. I also have trouble classifying this into a genre really, it would seem young-adult from just looking at the summary and the title but as the story progressed it kind of grew out of that in some areas but remained young-adult in all the rest.
Overall if this were reworked some I think this could rise to it’s full potential, but as it is now it’s simply okay. There is some violence but nothing too terrible so there shouldn’t be any real concern there. There is however a lot of ‘private’ talk. By this I mean the embarrassing naivety I mentioned earlier, that hovers around sex. There is also a few sex scenes that are fairly tasteful. I can’t say I fully recommend this but if you do ever want to try it I suggest trying to find a copy to borrow.
You can buy a copy here: Amazon