Dragon Steel (Dragon #2) by Laurence Yep (review)

February 8, 2015 All Reviews, Fantasy, YA 0 ★★★½

Dragon Steel (Dragon #2) by Laurence Yep (review)Dragon Steel by Laurence Yep
Published by HarperCollins on October 20th 1993
Number of Pages: 274
Genres: Adventure, Fairy Tales & Folklore, Fantasy, Young Adult
Source: Purchased
Format: Paperback
Purchase: At Amazon

In a fantastic undersea world, one princess fights to save her home.


Leaving behind the human world of Ramsgate, Princess Shimmer transforms herself back into her real dragon form and, with Thorn by her side, dives deep into the waters of an underground volcano -- to seek help in restoring her once-gentle world of the Inland Sea. Because the evil Civet has stolen her sea home, Shimmer discovers that all surviving members of her clan have been enslaved by the High King and forced to temper dragon steel, deep within the sweltering volcano mines.

In a maze of coral caverns, guided by mist stones and breathing pearls, Shimmer and her companions Indigo and Thorn venture into danger-filled waters where neither friends nor foes are to be trusted. It is with a triumphant combination of magic and indomitable spirit that the princess avenges her claim -- with a wisdom and power as great as dragon steel itself.

Magic, adventure and Chinese mythology is blended into this fun story. It’s been years since I read the first book, and so I didn’t remember much at all about it. But there is enough summarization of key plot points that I was able to figure out what was going on fairly easily.

For being as old as she is, Princess Shimmer still has a childlike view of the world about some things. She expected to be lauded and welcomed back into her uncle’s court under the sea. Even though she had been exiled from the dragon-kingdoms. This is not what happened of course, and as the story goes on, she grows up a little bit. Enough that it’s plausible that she would be a good ruler of her clan.

I didn’t really like Indigo much, she came off as ‘me against the world’ in most of the worst ways. But towards the end of the book, she turned around and started losing her icy and sharp edges.

Thorn seemed like a typical little boy, quick to defend himself as well as Shimmer. Ready for more adventure, no matter what kind, and a little bit jealous of the attention Shimmer was giving to Indigo.

Nothing was really resolved in this book. They got the object they were going after, and lost something just as precious to the clan. But Shimmer’s home is still not very close to being restored at all, and there are now additional questions that didn’t get answers.

The book is listed as young adult, but I would say it’s more aimed at children. The whole tone of the book was much younger than I usually read now, though still enjoyable.


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