Disclaimer: I received an eARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Growing up on the moon, Xingyin is accustomed to solitude, unaware that she is being hidden from the feared Celestial Emperor who exiled her mother for stealing his elixir of immortality. But when Xingyin’s magic flares and her existence is discovered, she is forced to flee her home, leaving her mother behind.
Alone, powerless, and afraid, she makes her way to the Celestial Kingdom, a land of wonder and secrets. Disguising her identity, she seizes an opportunity to learn alongside the emperor’s son, mastering archery and magic, even as passion flames between her and the prince.
To save her mother, Xingyin embarks on a perilous quest, confronting legendary creatures and vicious enemies across the earth and skies. But when treachery looms and forbidden magic threatens the kingdom, she must challenge the ruthless Celestial Emperor for her dream—striking a dangerous bargain in which she is torn between losing all she loves or plunging the realm into chaos.
Daughter of the Moon Goddess begins an enchanting, romantic duology which weaves ancient Chinese mythology into a sweeping adventure of immortals and magic—where love vies with honor, dreams are fraught with betrayal, and hope emerges triumphant (Goodreads, 2022).
Things I Enjoyed: The author does a great job of transporting us into the world of Daughter of the Moon Goddess. I can imagine myself inside the palaces and the clothing and jewelry are amazing.
In terms of the protagonist, I really liked Xingyin. I found myself sympathizing with her struggle to save her mother. I also could relate to her struggle with the prejudices of others due to her assumed lowly station and her gender.
In my opinion, the plot was a good mix of adventure and romance. I thought that the love triangle in this one was very well done. Both Wenzhi and Liwei were well developed and they each had a unique relationship with Xingyin making it hard to choose between the two early on in the story.
Things I Didn’t Enjoy: The pacing was off for me. The first third and the last were great, but the middle felt almost like a filler
Overall Thoughts: This was 3.5 star read for me. The pacing proved very detrimental with regards to my enjoyment of the story. However, if you enjoy a slower paced story and like YA fantasy then consider giving this book a try.
Quotes I Enjoyed:
A palace you cannot escape is a prison nonetheless
Their unkindness only had as much power as I gave it, and I would wrench back my tattered pride from beneath the soles of their feet because.. it was all I had left.