"Princess Taoshira of the Blue Crescent Islands is appalled when she is ordered to marry Prince Ramil of Gerfal. And he's not too pleased, either. She is used to a life of discipline, ritual, and splendor. He is used to hunting and carousing. They hate each other on sight. But both of their countries are under threat from a fearsome warlord, and the only chance of peace is to form an alliance.
When Tashi and Ram are kidnapped, they fear there's no escape--from their kidnappers or from each other. Can they put aside their differences long enough to survive ambush, unarmed combat, brainwashing, and imprisonment? And will the people they meet on their adventure--including a circus strongman, a daring rebel leader, a sinister master of spies, and the best female fighter they have ever seen--help them or betray them to the enemy?"
Dragonfly. Finally. After so many years of wanting to read this (more like two and a half years), I finally read it. Finally. After all this time. And truthfully, it did not fail me at all. Dragonfly passed with flying colors. Beautiful colors. Though there were some... parts that didn't work very well. But I'm willing to overlook that.
Taoshira. Princess Taoshira. I got very excited, because I thought she was Asian or something like that. Unfortunately, I can't practice my Chinese because there are no Chinese (yeah, I'm a nerd. Shut up and move on). Such a shame the author didn't put that in, but I didn't let it get to me.
Okay. I'll get to the main point.
Ramil is definitely a douchebag. I'm sorry, but not that sorry. First of all, he shows up drunk. Well, half-drunk. And a bit of a jerk. Even though his POV is there, I found it rather disappointing. Seriously, did he grow up as a whiner to everything? Sure, you are going to get married to a foreign princess, but is it really that bad? Why can't you just... elegantly figure out the problem and then... Oh, right. He has to learn a bit. But that guy is still a douche. And utterly unromantic. (At first). But he does make a great character development. Changed, different. Stronger. Wiser. When he was kidnapped, the author took it as a chance for him to grow. And grow he did.
(However, I remain quite... confused about the ending. I don't remember him being so... daring and flirty. Seriously. I mean that. Ramil's character at the ending of Dragonfly is at least confusing and strange and awkward).
Taoshira is a much better character in my opinion. She tries very hard to be perfect, but her flaws are clear and obvious. She remains optimistic, and she holds her faith in her goddess. Unlike Ramil, Taoshira's journey is more on a spiritual level (even at one point doubting her faith). But she comes out alright in the end.
Plus, Julia Golding made even the secondary characters memorable. I wish she only put a bit more humor into it. There was a chance...
Overall, Dragonfly is a great and wild adventure. It is only marred by the unfortunate character of Ramil (because how whiny he was in the beginning [to the point of annoying me very greatly and even confusing me]). I like the themes and messages Golding passed on, and it is very interesting. I'm not bored with Dragonfly, not even for a single second or page.
Rating: Four out of Five