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Dragon Sword and Wind Child (Tales of the Magatama, #1)
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Dragon Sword and Wind Child (Tales of the Magatama #1)

4.1  ·  Rating details ·  900 Ratings  ·  106 Reviews
In the land of Toyoashihara, the forces of the God of Light and the Goddess of Darkness have waged war for generations. But for 15-year old Saya, the war is far away and unimportant--until the day she discovers she is the reincarnation of the Water Maiden and a princess of the Children of the Dark. Raised to love the Light and detest the Dark, Saya must come to terms with ...more
Hardcover, 286 pages
Published October 16th 2007 by VIZ Media LLC (first published 1988)
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Kat I would say this is a good book for ages 11+. It includes a lot of war, death, and moral ambiguity, but nothing graphic.

Community Reviews

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Dec 28, 2008 rated it it was amazing
If I were to choose one thing I liked best about this book, I would probably choose the way that Ogiwara takes a bucket of fantasy tropes (magical swords, Chosen One types, Light and Darkness, etc.) and dumps it upside down. At first glance it seems like a rather cliché story, but read it and you will discover something strikingly original and beautiful.
Or I might choose the fact that this book struck me in the same way Ratha's Creature did. Original, interesting, a roller coaster of action with
Feb 18, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This is a gorgeous story, but not without flaws.
Saya is our protagonist, an "ordinary" teenage girl who learns that she is the one destined to have the power to awaken and still the Dragon Sword, the only weapon that can end the war that is raging between the Light and Dark. I know, sounds a bit too familiar, a bit generic right? Still, I found myself quickly pulled in by the beautiful atmosphere of the story.

I was instantly intrigued by the story's concept of Light and Dark. One side is led by
Mar 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Jayme by: Kaion Vin
It took me a while to get into this book, but it wasn't the story's fault, I think it was the translation. It felt very cold and didn't draw me into the amazing story that was unfolding right underneath the completely passionless words. But once I got used to that, the story was incredible.

While reading it I kept wondering if it was based on actual Japanese mythology. It had a real pagan, Greek or Celtic kind of saga feel to it, but Japanese instead. The afterword told me this was exactly what
Aug 31, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a rare impulse buy for me since I'd never heard of this book until I came across it at the bookstore. I was very glad I read it. It's a translation of a Japanese fantasy book written in the tradition of the common British and American fantasies based on Celtic mythology, only using Japanese mythology from the Kojiki as the basis for the story. I loved the fantasy elements and am definitely planning to pick up the second book in the Tales of the Magatama, which has also been translated i ...more
Oct 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of Asian Fantasy
Noriko Ogiwara grew up reading Western Fantasy books such as Narnia. While she loved those, she also kept dreaming of a fantasy set in Asia. In the end, she simply went ahead and wrote one herself. Dragon Sword and Wind Child is the first book in her Magatama-series, but it is also a stand-alone novel that can be read on its own.

Saya, a slightly tomboyish girl from a tiny village, would be living a perfectly normal life, if it weren't for the intense nightmares that keep reminding her of her dar
Nov 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
One of the best Japanese Creation Myths retelling I've ever read in my life, and it's a YA. People, read up!

What I remember about the story: we follows the heroine Saya, a daughter of the clan of Darkness, who is also a reincarnation of a series of Water Maidens before her. She is summoned to the Capital to serve the Moon God, son of the God of Light. Saya falls for the handsome, kind Moon God almost instantly. However, soon Saya finds herself caught between the conflict between the Moon God and
Whitley Birks
See this review and more at Whitley Reads

I recently found out that the second book in this series has been translated to English, so of course I had to do a reread of this one. For…what, the fourth time? Fifth? Who cares; I’m sure I’ll do more.

This one of my favorite books from my childhood, so one of those stars is probably from nostalgia.

That being said, the book probably won’t appeal to everyone. It’s a very dense, plot-heavy book with little in the way of in-depth character development. Whic
Jan 15, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
This was a different book than I expected. It has more similarities to the current fashion for YA romantic adventure fantasy ( the female main character getting a boyfriend who is a vampire/werewolf/angel/demon/dragon/god/whatevertheywillthinkofnext) in a very different tone (mythologic) and setting, a prehistoric type of fantasy Japan. I head this compared to The Lord of the Rings, or Narnia, or many other things, but I would only compare it to one of the longish chapters in the Silmarillion, b ...more
Sinead (Huntress of Diverse Books)
Check out my book blog for more book reviews and other bookish posts!

I’m so happy that I read Dragon Sword and Wind Child and would never have done so if it hadn’t been for Asian Lit Bingo. The prompt was to find a book that had been translated into English, and I decided that I wanted to read a fantasy book. Dragon Sword and Wind Child is a Japanese-mythology inspired fantasy story that had been written in Japanese. One of my favourite fantasy book themes are dark vs. light, so this immediately
Elizabeth Spencer
Aug 23, 2015 rated it it was ok
Dragon Sword and Wind Child is the story of Saya, a young girl who lives in very ancient Japan, where the kami of Light and his immortal children have imprisoned all of the gods of the earth. The prince and princess of Light have waged a very long war against the people of Darkness (i.e., all the mortals and their gods) so that their father, the God of Light, will return. Meanwhile, Saya thinks she's just a normal peasant girl, but it turns out she's the reincarnation of the Princess of Darkness ...more
Dec 05, 2016 rated it liked it
It is a fantastic retelling of Kojiki Stories, of the divide between Izanami and Izanagi, light and darkness, that is cast in a way that's understandable and profound for modern reader. Again, young adult literature proves to be so deep and moving.
Jun 10, 2010 rated it really liked it
I am not sure how I feel about this book. The ornate language reads like the classics that I grew up with and that turned me into a lover of children's books. The exotic worlds introduced within the book further made me aware that I was not reading any ordinary writer. Yet enough of the time I felt so confused that I am not sure how to react to this book.

Often I felt as if Ogiwara was explaining concepts alien to me, but which were so integral to the story that I remained unable to fully appreci
May 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
Dragon Sword and Wind Child is a translation of a Japanese fantasy novel that draws on Japanese mythology and Western fantasy tradition.

The forces of the God of Light and the Goddess of Darkness have been at war for generations. For Saya, an orphaned teenage girl living among the people of Light, the war exists somewhere in the background… until she finds out that she is the Water Maiden, a reincarnation of the priestess of the Goddess of Dark. As the Water Maiden, Saya is the only one who can t
Suzanne Rooyen
Apr 02, 2013 rated it liked it
More like 3.5/5 stars.

So much to love about this book but sometimes the storytelling got in the way of the story itself.

Firstly, this is a translation of a novel originally written in Japanese. The prose was heavy handed at times and did't always flow smoothly. Other times it read more like an anime series and I quite liked it. I think some of the head hopping might've been due to translation, and might not have been the author's intention, however, it still threw me out of the story a few times
Dawn Michelle

This was April's book-club book, and I have to admit, after last months read of "Monkey" I was a little dubious. We stayed in the Far East with this one, but this was centered in Japan and not China. And as I really love all things Japan, I was hoping that would help me love this book.

I am really surprised. I really, really enjoyed this book. I didn't understand HALF of it because I know nothing of Eastern Religion and the gods that they worship. Trying to figure out who they all were was the
Aug 14, 2007 rated it really liked it
Why is it that lame books stay around forever and good books, like this one, disappear off the face of the earth. I had to look this up under to even find it. Ridiculous. My only hope for society is that I tried looking up Catherine Called Birdie, (which I detested) and couldn't find that at all. Anyway, I liked this book a lot. It was kind of odd, much to my liking. It was set in Asia, or it's magical equivelant, and involved a quest, a sword, invading armies, that sort of thing. Not ...more
May 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Dragon Sword and Wind Child is a hidden gem. Ogiwara weaves a lyrical, whimsical, complex tale about love, war, fate and religion. Although the English translation is beautiful, I can't even imagine how gorgeous and nuanced it would be in the original Japanese. As a warning to fantasy fans looking for their next escapism read, this isn't a romp of an adventure; rather it is a slow burn, character and idea driven myth.
Jun 05, 2007 rated it really liked it
An intriguing read, with odd twists I didn't expect - I've heard that there are two more books in the trilogy, but I don't think they've ever been translated and it seems a shame, as I'd love to read them (and this one again!).
Nov 22, 2007 rated it liked it
Shelves: asian
This was the first novel I had read in a long while, and it kept my attention. The myth doesn't bog down the narrative and vice versa. Good read.
Jan 13, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love when books are loosely based on myths or legends that come from the author's country. This is a book aimed mainly for young adults, but I found that even as an adult you could enjoy it.
LG (A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions)
Fifteen-year-old Saya is the only survivor of an attack by the army of the God of Light on her village when she was a child. Although she occasionally dreams about the attack, she now lives with her adoptive parents in the village of Hashiba, which has accepted the God of Light and his immortal children, Princess Teruhi and Prince Tsukishiro. Saya has no memories of her birth parents and loves the Light just as much as any other person in Hashiba, so it's a shock when several strangers arrive an ...more
Dec 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was a really awesome read. It was written in Japanese and translated to English, so some things that might have been more obvious to a reader of the original, such as the godlings, the Prince & Princess of Light, corresponding to the moon & sun, took me a little longer to sort through. That certainly didn't hurt the story any though, and may have even added a little more mystery.

Saya, our main character is something of a reluctant heroine, and the path she travels throughout the st
Keri Sparks
Aug 12, 2017 rated it liked it
I'm probably rating this higher than I would normally, but despite the writing style being somewhat flat and lacking in pulling me in and it having no buildup, I really enjoyed the story. The characters were interesting even if they, too, we're flat and lacked a certain amount of depth. It was also very telling and not at all showing, which is probably the biggest reason why I had trouble getting involved with it.
I did have a few problems with the story line itself and some of the events, but I
Octavia Cade
Well-written and really enjoyable fantasy, based very loosely on the Japanese myth of Izanagi, Izanami, and family. My knowledge of Japanese mythology is minimal at best, so a lot of this was new to me, but it was sad and hopeful and lovely all at once. It's nice to have fantasy protagonists who are distinctly averse to battle, and the war parts of this story (thankfully minimal) didn't quite match up to the rest of it - in many ways Dragon Sword is a very quiet story, one that values reconcilia ...more
Jun 02, 2018 rated it liked it
Dragon Sword and Wind Child was definitely something else, though it ended up not really being my thing. Things were progressing at a rapid pace, with fairly quick changes both in setting and in the way the characters were, with very little time for reflection. None of it felt forced or unbelievable, it was just too fast for me to properly get into it and enjoy it - at times, the book felt more like it was going through story beats without actually developing them.

I still think that this book wi
Lauren AKA randomreader
Crap, my librarian friend Amy will kill me for not liking this book. Don't kill me Amy!
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I can definitely understand why people love this book. The writing is gorgeous, the premise is unique, but I did not click at all with this book. I felt like the main character was a very stereotypical " manic pixie dream girl" type character. Ugh, she was bland but adored, and I just couldn't do it.
The mythology started strong, but the more I read the more this book and I were not friends.
The big issue with Dragon Sword and Wind Child is pacing: it just drags on too long, and rather than slowly building a well developed story arc, it plods along placidly with miniature peaks and resolutions throughout. Feels almost more like a condensed epic or series of vignettes than a single novel. Though at first blush, it presents as a story with remarkable potential for nuanced rumination on belief, loyalty, and so-forth; it devolves into a not-that-exciting romance. It also occasionally co ...more
Aug 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A bit slow, but beautiful, lush descriptions and rich in Japanese inspired mythology and colour. #ownvoices must read!
Feb 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
A very good story, although Saya annoyed 😒 me a few times throughout the story. I may check out the second book later on. 😃
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