Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao
after a long time since this book was sent to me I finally managed to read it, also considering all the commitments I’m having lately.
In this book we do not find any hero figure, but the figure of a so-called villain as a protagonist. Xifeng actually may seem like a normal girl in love at the beginning, who wants to pursue the future that her aunt predicted for her, even though her Guma has always been very strict towards the girl.
But soon her will is altered by the obscure suggestions of the demon that hosts within her body. She will end up killing and plotting against people who are close to her to become empress, thus conquering the emperor’s heart and exterminating all her rivals.
I sincerely believed that in the end she chose the prince heir to the throne, but apparently he left to go and save his brother, but without knowing he was killed. We do not know what happens, but he does not come back. I was totally misled by the way the plot took at the end.
The first half of the book is normal, explanatory I would dare to say, because we do not encounter many mysteries as in the second part, the part where everything really happens. For the second book I do not know what to expect. The first ends with the realization of her goals, but I’m almost sure that Julie has very clear ideas since on instagram many times she posts photos of her progress for Kingdom of the Blazing Phoenix (title of the sequel).
And as if having a book in which the protagonist is a real badass was not enough, Forest of a Thousand Lanterns is one of the few books in which there is a guide to the pronunciation of the characters, which, as an addition in a book, together with maps, it’s something that I love a lot.
For me this book deserves 4.5 stars, but I’ll get to 5 for the beautiful cover, the plot that comes out from the usual lines, and the content.
To the next article,