Eon: Dragoneye Reborn

Summary:

Twelve-year-old Eon is in the running to become the next Dragoneye, the intercessor between man and the energy dragons. Eon has a secret: Eon is actually Eona, a 16-year-old girl forced by qualification to live her life as a boy. Females are forbidden to use Dragon Magic and her consequences would be dire if she were ever discovered. Worse than being female, she is also a cripple, which puts her beneath the other Dragoneye contenders. When the Mirror Dragon chooses her at the ceremony, Eona’s secrets become even more difficult to hide. Now, Eona must hide her femininity and transcend her disability to avoid suspicion, all while being caught in the middle of a political battle for power divided by the emperor and the ruthless Lord Ido.


Reader Enjoyment Factors:

Asian cultural tradition and a strong female character collide in this fantasy that explores society and belief systems.

Content Awareness Factors:

Although written at a fifth grade level, the themes may be too mature for some middle grade students. There are mild sexual themes (including the exploration of gender differences and sexism) and some violence.


Young Reader Reaction

This book was a treat to read. I took my time so I could savor each chapter. I love how Alison Goodman took historical practices in Asian culture and acclimated it into her fantasy world. Those rituals were obviously well researched. I was also intrigued throughout was the exploration of gender and what it truly means to be “masculine” or “feminine.” The story treats sexism with care and realistic representation. The main character is not a traditional superhero. Eona is crippled, not only physically, but also mentally due to the unreachable standards that society has set – to obtain true masculinity.

The only thing I do not care for is the book's length (500 pages). The plot is very drawn-out and could easily be reduced to 400 pages. That said, I respect the author’s choice of drawing the reader in with detailed descriptions. I would recommend this book for ages 14+. This book would be a great gift to anybody interested in high fantasy and genuine female characters.

Type of Book:
This is the first book in the Eon trilogy. It is a high interest / low readability young adult novel.
Educational Themes:

There is a lot to explore. On the broader spectrum, the book can generate discussions on how we judge others and set societal standards, and what something *really* means. At the character level, Eona opens the door to talk about self worth, self value, limitations, et al.

Reading Level:
5.5
Recommended Age To Read By Yourself:
12 and Up
Recommended Age To Read Together:
10 and Up
Age of child:
Teen STAR Review Team, Be the Star You Are!™
Purchase Recommendation:
Borrow, at least. The book may be long, but readers will get wrapped up in Eona's story quickly.

Title Eon: Dragoneye Reborn
Author Alison Goodman
Publisher Viking Children's Books, a Penguin Random House Company © 2008
ISBN 9780670062270
Material Hard Cover
Genres Adventure, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Dragons, Asia | Asian People
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