I was pleasantly surprised by these books. I picked Eon up on a whim, because I liked the cover. I never dreamed that I'd be delving into a yet unexplored (for me) world that took my imagination to the limits and created images in my mind that made the new Alice in Wonderland look tame.
I love it when that happens.
There were so many things I liked about these books. So many intrigues to jump right into. So many characters to love (and then hate).
From the beginning, I suspected that something was amiss with Eon. "He" was slightly girly, and I figured that "his" femininity had been suppressed. I was right. Being a girl just made the situation that much more interesting, as I wondered what on earth would happen. The setting makes things that much worse, as ancient Asia was not known for tolerance towards women, at least in positions of power like a Dragoneye.
(The books are not actually set in ancient Asia, just based on China and Japan. The Kingdom of the Celestial Dragon is fictional.)
I really loved how things worked together in these books. I loved the level of intrigue and how things worked together. I loved how everything was important, even though it may not have seemed so at the time. I loved how the mythology of Asia was worked through the book and how well it flowed. I really felt like I had been transported back there and was living the story along with Eona.
The characters were rich and well-developed. I loved seeing their individual personalities shine through. I raged when things didn't go as I thought they should, and I mourned when bad things happened. I could understand why some of them did the things they did, because I probably would have done the same in their situation. I just really, really liked the characters.
I think fans of fantasy, Asia, and YA in general would really like these books. Go pick them up!
I'm giving them both a 'Pick Me' rating.