King by Ellen Oh

KingTitle: King
Author: Ellen Oh
Series: The Dragon King Chronicles
Publisher: HarperTeen
Published: March 31, 2015
Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3 out of 5)

The summary of King from Goodreads:

Girl warrior, demon slayer, Tiger spirit of the Yellow Eyes—Kira is ready for her final quest. In this thrilling finale to the Prophecy trilogy, fans will get even more of the fierce Kira and her quest to save her kingdom!

All eyes are on her. Kira, once an outcast in her home village of Hansong, is now the only one with the power to save her kingdom. She must save her cousin, the boy fated to be the future king, uncover the third lost treasure, and face innumerable enemies in order to fulfill the famed prophecy.

Kira braves a sea of tigers and battles armies of demons as she musters her inner strength and learns to trust herself, the romantic feelings for Jaewon that are growing within her, and the destiny that must be hers.

I’m happy I stuck with this series. While the major issue I had with it never really seemed to improve, and I had another small issue with this book, I felt content by the end. It certainly wasn’t a perfect series, but it was likable enough that I felt good about finishing. There are other series that I felt so strongly against that I couldn’t even finish them to know how the plot ended. The Dragon King Chronicles was not one of those series.

The Good:

Everything talked about in the first two novels and all the seemingly impossible tasks come together in this novel. Kira finds her confidence in herself (after a bit…more on that later). The good against evil fight takes place. There’s even a little bit of romance in this one. Just enough to make my heart smile just a bit.

I’m finding myself liking some of the secondary characters quite a bit in this novel. They seemed to find their own voice a little bit in this novel. Taejo really seems so come into his own. Seeing it from an outside perspective was one thing. I wish there would be an little extra from Taejo’s perspective because what happened to facilitate the change would probably be an interesting story. He is still quite young, but the gravity of his situation seemed to fully connect with him this time. I was really happy to see him come into his own.

There’s a lot these characters have to come to terms with about their pasts. There’s been a lot of hurt through these novels and I liked how Oh had the characters deal with it. It felt real and raw, and even made me tear up a bit. The resolutions of the novel were what I hoped they’d be.

The Bad:

As with the other novels, there’s a lot of telling instead of showing. I’ve made my peace with that issue, though.

My biggest problem is a portion of the story seemed to go completely out of character for Kira. She’s strong. She’s a fighter. Even when she didn’t believe in her value as a person, she believed in her value as a warrior. Facing horrible odds, she’d still find a way to come out on top. While I can understand the reason she began to crumble, I couldn’t understand why she lost her character so much, so fast. I think it would have made sense had I been able to develop my own sense of her character (the whole show me, don’t tell me thing…), but the way everything was written leading up to it meant I couldn’t see it.

The Recommendation:

If you’ve read both Prophecy and Warrior, you should probably read King. Yes, it still has its issues, but it’s still worth the read.

Purchasing Links:

Barnes and Noble

Thank you to Edelweiss and HarperTeen for an advanced copy of the novel in exchange for an honest review.

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