YA Book Review: PROPHECY by Ellen Oh

As someone who dabbles in (writing about) demons, I was drawn to Prophecy by talented author Ellen Oh. In the words of Legend author Marie Lu, “What an adventure! When I finished my journey with Kira, all I wanted was more. Spectacular!” I couldn’t agree more.

propechy 3 largeProphecy centers around 17-year-old Kira, the sole female warrior in the fictional Kingdom of Hansong, reviled for her yellow eyes and gifted (or cursed) with the ability to detect demons. Within the first few pages, crucial plot points are revealed.

***Demons possess the power to beguile humans. No one else but Kira can see/smell them.
***Outrageous rumors surround Kira’s unique powers. Kira pretends the lifelong prejudice she has endured doesn’t hurt, but deep inside, it causes crushing self-doubt.
***Kira is Crown Prince Taejo’s sworn protector. He is her beloved 12-year-old cousin, who views Kira as a highly protective older sister.
***There’s an age-old prophecy by the Dragon King, the ancestor of the current rulers, that his successor will arise and save mankind from the rising demon threat.

SEVEN WILL BECOME THREE

THREE WILL BECOME ONE.

ONE WILL SAVE US ALL.

This hoped for savior is called the Dragon Musado. But who is it? Trying to figure out the Dragon Musado’s identity becomes the central question of the book. Most characters, including Kira, believe the Dragon Musado is Prince Taejo: she’ll do anything, including sacrifice herself, to help him grow into his destiny. When the Dragon King’s fabled ruby ring is revealed as critical to the prophecy, Kira leads Prince Taejo and a small but loyal group on a perilous quest across the Seven Kingdoms to attain it.

seven kingdoms

All the characters are unique and compelling- good, evil, and fantastical alike. There’s an evil shaman, heavenly maidens, wise monks, sneaky imps, and hordes of demonic warriors and traitorous humans. Two young men vie for Kira’s attention, which will definitely appeal to YA readers. Kira is extremely close to her family and is bolstered by their love and support.

Magical, mystical, Asian-inspired elements abound in Prophecy. My favorite magical element is Kira’s tiger spirit, the reason for her shocking yellow eyes. Whenever she suffers injury, the tiger spirit visits during sleep, wraps her in a golden glow, and heals her wounds. How awesome is that?!

I give this rip-roaring, immersive adventure a solid 5 out of 5 stars. Author Ellen Oh is the co-founder, President, and CEO of WNDB:  We Need Diverse Books  (#WeNeedDiverseBooks), and credits a Genghis Khan biography for inspiring her fascination with ancient Asian history. I strongly advise you order the entire trilogy (Prophecy, Warrior, and King) from your library or bookseller, as you’ll be itching to know what happens next.

prophecy series

  

8 comments

    1. Thanks, Carol! I’m so glad you enjoyed it. I’ve been reading a number of Asian mythology-inspired books lately, and this one truly had me hooked!

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    1. You’re welcome, Kirsti! And yes, I recommend it for middle school on up. There are some difficult battle scenes, but nothing else inappropriate.

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