Book Summary: No one wanted Ai Ling. And deep down she is relieved—despite the dishonor she has brought upon her family—to be unbetrothed and free, not some stranger's subservient bride banished to the inner quarters.
But now, something is after her. Something terrifying—a force she cannot comprehend. And as pieces of the puzzle start to fit together, Ai Ling begins to understand that her journey to the Palace of Fragrant Dreams isn't only a quest to find her beloved father but a venture with stakes larger than she could have imagined.
Bravery, intelligence, the will to fight and fight hard . . . she will need all of these things. Just as she will need the new and mysterious power growing within her. She will also need help.
It is Chen Yong who finds her partly submerged and barely breathing at the edge of a deep lake. There is something of unspeakable evil trying to drag her under. On a quest of his own, Chen Yong offers that help . . . and perhaps more.
Liana's Summary: Ai Ling isn't going to wait for her father to return anymore. Because she's going to find him herself. He promised 2 months. He's already been gone for six. And besides, Ai Ling would rather die than marry Master Huang. But when she sets out on her journey, she realizes she can't do it alone. So, with the help of Chen Yong, a young man, and his brother, Li Rong, they set out to their destination to face what they must face, sacrificing a lot on the way. Meanwhile, Ai Ling and Chen Yong find out that their fates are more interwined than they think.
This was SO good. I don't know why l didn't pick it up earlier.
Wow Cindy Pon, wow. That was freaking amazing.
Okay, so, I am Chinese myself. And a fan of Chinese dramas. So whenever I read a Chinese historical fiction, such as Silver Phoenix, I feel like I'm watching a drama. LOL. There, of course, are a lot of historical references and since I know some of them, I often find myself recognizing the tradition. In this book, I not only recognized, but learned a few things about my own culture.
There are a lot of gods and goddesses and dragons and phoenixes and demons and trees of immortality (sounds almost like Greek mythology now, huh?) which just made me enjoy it THAT much more. It reminded me of a Chinese version of Little Sister by Kara Dalkey, honestly.
The title. Silver Phoenix. There isn't an explanation for it until the almost-end. Which I will not explain out loud because that's spoiling. And I hate spoiling, especially when the book is highly recommended by me. But oh ho, yah. It means so much.
So let me discuss the characters. (The fabulous trio that made me think of Harry Potter)
Ai Ling- She's brave and reckless and persuasive. Persuasive. PERSUASIVE. That's a really big part of her and I can't give any more emphasis. You'll see. Anyways, she seems like she can do fine without Chen Yong but then again he saved her life so much times. And she saved his life so much times as well. What I like about her is that she's not weak. She's not the type to cower, she's the type to approach the bad things.
Chen Yong- This guy. Ok. He's half Xian and half... White, I'll just say broadly. His father was White and his mother was Xian. His life story is so sad. And, he's hot. He's gorgeous. LOL. He's really kind and caring and he's ready to unsheathe his sword any time as long as it means he's protecting Ai Ling. Whenever he's mad or sad he just keeps his emotions to himself, which makes him somewhat introverted, but not really. He's just so lovable. The best part of him is that he went with Ai Ling even if he didn't have to. He risked his life so much times and he remained calm each of those times, never yelling at Ai Ling or blaming her in any way.
Li Rong- He's Chen Yong's brother. Well, not by blood, anyways. Without him, I doubt this story would have humor at all. Without him, Chen Yong and Ai Ling's travel would have been boring, dry, and flat. And 3 fighters are better than 2, right? I'm grateful that Cindy Pon decided to let Li Rong travel with them. Readers will never forget him.
I think it's time for quotes!
Some of these names bring me great amusement. Hei Po. #BrbDying LOL
"After two years, I implored your father to take a second wife."
"Fei Ming towered over her."
"I've been hungering for a taste of you."
"It was a mistake..."
"I've been waiting for you."
"I counted nearly three hundred strides. I saw no windows or doors, no way of entering the tower."
IT'S TIME TO CALL FOR RAPUNZEL
"I became a eunuch when I was twenty years.."
GOOD NOW HE CAN'T MAKE HER PREGNANT
"I don't doubt your capability to travel the world-- and beyond."
Toooooooo infinity, and beyond!
Hopefully there's more romance in book 2. I need it NOW. -cries-
The ending was just so sad.
And that's that. What did you think of this review? (;