Title: Shadow of the Fox
Series: Shadow of the Fox #1
Author: Julie Kagawa
Release Date: Oct 2, 2018
Genres: YA Fantasy
Blurb: One thousand years ago, the great Kami Dragon was summoned to grant a single terrible wish—and the land of Iwagoto was plunged into an age of darkness and chaos.
Now, for whoever holds the Scroll of a Thousand Prayers, a new wish will be granted. A new age is about to dawn.
Raised by monks in the isolated Silent Winds temple, Yumeko has trained all her life to hide her yokai nature. Half kitsune, half human, her skill with illusion is matched only by her penchant for mischief. Until the day her home is burned to the ground, her adoptive family is brutally slain and she is forced to flee for her life with the temple’s greatest treasure—one part of the ancient scroll.
There are many who would claim the dragon’s wish for their own. Kage Tatsumi, a mysterious samurai of the Shadow Clan, is one such hunter, under orders to retrieve the scroll…at any cost. Fate brings Kage and Yumeko together. With a promise to lead him to the scroll, an uneasy alliance is formed, offering Yumeko her best hope for survival. But he seeks what she has hidden away, and her deception could ultimately tear them both apart.
With an army of demons at her heels and the unlikeliest of allies at her side, Yumeko’s secrets are more than a matter of life or death. They are the key to the fate of the world itself.
If you’ve been following my blog, then you know that I struggled with the first 20% of this book. I’ve been such a mood reader lately, and I’ve noticed one big thing for me is character connections. This is always a thing for me, but just a lot more so right now. And while you meet the two main players in the first 20% of the book, they aren’t together. And things were just okay. Interesting. But, not producing any great intrigue in me.
Well, at 22%, the characters finally come together and things rapidly improve from there. I loved watching Tatsumi so very slowly open to Yumeko, and dreaded it at the same time for him. Emotions are dangerous where Tatsumi is concerned. And I mean demon-producing dangerous. But watching as his desire to protect Yumeko grew was pulling on my heart strings.
Adding to the intrigue are the other characters they pick up along the way. Okame in particular proves to be a rather amusing side character that adds a lot to the fun of the story. And the whole ordeal on how Okame comes to join them was entertaining in itself. Yumeko is quite naive (understandably so) having been locked away in a temple all her life, but her goodness brings out the goodness in others.
Once the characters are all beginning to mesh, I could really appreciate the world building and premise of the story! I also want to point out that I really enjoyed the little parables and bits of wisdom shared throughout the story. They were such an added bonus!
But, there was that ending that was just sooooo disappointing. And I’m dreading how it will leave things heading into the next book! But, I’ll definitely have to find out! If you’re wondering about what type of ending it has, all I can say is that the first part of a journey is achieved, but there are definitely tons of cliffhangerish things that will drive you crazy. At least you don’t have to wait on the next couple books to be released! 4 Stars!