While a couple of little things bugged me in this book, I ended up enjoying it far more than I thought I would. First, the things I found a little irritating: In the first part of the book, Yumeko’s character often talks to herself in italics, and every time it happened it dragged me out of the story. The other thing was the two-perspective approach… the two characters would sometimes go over the events of the previous chapter from their own perspective, which really just re-hashed what I’d literally just read. I rarely learned anything from it.

But despite these things, something about the story and characters kept me turning pages (and wanting to go back to the book after I’d put it down). Yumeko is a very naive and innocent character, while Tatsumi is pretty much the opposite. It makes for an interesting dynamic when added to the central tension of the book which is that they are essentially on opposing sides of the same fight. I also loved the addition of various characters Yumeko and Tatsumi picked up along their journey, particularly the Ronin character Okame. He broke up the dynamic nicely and was really fun to read!

The rich Japanese-themed world building was also a great additional character – Julie Kagawa really brought the mythology and landscape to life. ⭐⭐⭐ from me