Mandy Reviews: Alison Goodman—"EONA"
*SPOILER ALERT FOR EON*
If you haven’t yet read EON – also known as The Two Pearls of Wisdom, EON: Dragoneye Reborn and EON: Rise of the Dragoneye… go and read EON first. Seriously – right now!
EONA is the sequel to the multi-award winning EON, and wraps up the story of the Dragoneyes. Both EON and EONA are set in a kind of ancient-magical-alternate-mash-up of China and Japan. Eona is the Dragoneye to the beautiful Mirror Dragon who suddenly reappeared after going missing 500 years ago. The Emperor is dead, replaced on the throne by the evil Lord Sethon while the true Emperor, Kygo, is missing. Only Eona and the power-hungry Lord Ido (Dragoneye to the Rat Dragon) survive… and only just.
Eona is on the run in search of Kygo with her supporters, Dela and Ryko, while Ido is a tortured captive of Sethon. Eona must learn to harness her own power to save the land, as well as put the rightful emperor on the throne and defeat Sethon. Just to confuse things a little more (a LOT more, actually) she needs to save her enemy, Ido, to do this. As the only other surviving Dragoneye, he is the one person who can teach Eona to use her power and call the Mirror Dragon safely. Lord Ido seems to have changed when Eona healed him – has he finally learned to feel compassion? Is his twisted thirst for total power of the land, the elements and the dragons finally quenched? Is he really the ally Eona hopes him to be? Is the chemistry between them real, or another of Ido’s tricks? These are just some of the questions that kept me holding my breath, furiously turning page after page… and then… and there was Kygo… *sigh*.
Kygo is the son of the slain emperor, the rightful heir. He even wears the Pearl at his throat – an enormous stone stitched painfully in place, a procedure that must be done within twelve breaths of the last emperor’s death. But Kygo’s uncle, Sethon made a bloody and successful grab for the throne throwing the land into turmoil. Will they succeed in their quest to put Kygo back on the throne? Can Kygo trust Eona? Can they trust their growing feelings for one another? Or will Ido and the connection he shares with the only female Dragoneye win her heart?
EONA, like EON, is told from a first person point of view. We’re there with Eona every step of the way as she battles her own feelings for these powerful men. We understand as she keeps deadly secrets from those she loves, knowing it will hurt them. We share her pain intimately as she learns the secrets of her ancestors and the Dragons and grows from a young girl into a strong, capable woman. Eona is far from perfect. She makes mistakes, she acts rashly and without thought, sometimes with terrible consequences. But throughout, as a reader we also understand she has no other choice.
EON is one of my all-time favourite books, and although I expected EONA to be just as amazing, I honestly didn’t expect Alison Goodman to create a sequel that was even better than the original. The world is richer, the action harder and faster. I cared more about the supporting cast of friends and allies this time around; I loved being there, inside Eona’s head as she grew and matured. The confusion she felt with her feelings between Kygo and Ido was palpable (as were some of the, um… kissing scenes!) and my stomach lurched with the violence in the numerous battle scenes. The Dragons themselves are intriguing and sad and it’s not far into this book you realise no character is guaranteed to make it out alive. Goodman has an incredible gift of evoking emotion with her words. I cried and I laughed out loud, and then I cried some more.
EONA is violent, furious and exquisitely tender and beautiful. You won’t put it down except to catch your breath.
Note: There has been a little confusion with the titles from this duology. For marketing reasons, they have numerous titles. EON is also known as: The Two Pearls of Wisdom, EON: Dragoneye Reborn and EON: Rise of the Dragoneye.
EONA will also be released in different parts of the world as: The Necklace of the Gods and EONA: Return of the Dragoneye.
EONA — Alison Goodman
Published by Angus&Robertson, an imprint of Harper Collins, Australia.
Paperback, 469 pages.
ISBN – 978 0 7322 8494 7