As I have mentioned before, I discovered Yoon Ha Lee, as many people did, with Ninefox Gambit. That book hit me like a freight train - there was so much happening, and I didn’t know if I understood half of it, it what I did get, I loved. I devoured the Machineries of Empire series and have been saving the short stories, reading them slowly, because I don’t want them to end. I read his YA novel, Dragon Pearl, when it came out, which I frankly did not love. I’m not sure if I just found the plot too haphazard, or if the YA tone didn’t work for me, or if I didn’t enjoy the Space Fantasy aspects, but when I read it, I kept thinking two things: this protagonist is making all of the wrong choices, and the writing style is too simplistic and is turning me off.
I decided to give Tiger Honor, another book in the same universe as Dragon Pearl, a try (thanks, NetGalley, for the eARC in exchange for this honest review!). I didn’t love this either, it I enjoyed it more than I did Dragon Pearl. I think my main problem is that I am not the target audience - this is more middle grade than YA, and so the conventions are different. I felt the pacing was off, and several of the secondary characters felt like cyphers, and the protagonist felt both too competent t and incompetent at the same time. I may just wait for the author’s next adult novel. But I will recommend it to my kid.