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The Dragon Warrior

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  137 ratings  ·  79 reviews
As a member of the Jade Society, twelve-year-old Faryn Liu dreams of honoring her family and the gods by becoming a warrior. But the Society has shunned Faryn and her brother Alex ever since their father disappeared years ago, forcing them to train in secret.

Then, during an errand into San Francisco, Faryn stumbles into a battle with a demon--and helps defeat i
ebook, 288 pages
Published October 15th 2019 by Bloomsbury USA Kids
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Hannah Belyea The author has a "The Dragon Warrior 2" book in her list of works, so I assume this will become a series.

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Average rating 4.10  · 
Rating details
 ·  137 ratings  ·  79 reviews

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Truth be told, I finished this book a few weeks ago, but somehow I find much easier to review books I’ve either adored or hated. Because, usually, those books get me all fired up. This story… did not. It’s a good beginning to an original and diverse middle grade series, don’t get me wrong, but it’s also one of those books that you need to remind yourself to finish because your heart just does not automatically turn their way.

The East Asian culture and action are what I liked most about it. Fary
Katie Zhao
May 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Man am I glad I can count this to my GR challenge! I am so excited to share Faryn Liu's story with the world. Gods and demons and dragons, food and family and fun, all steeped in Chinese mythology and lore. This is a book that I would have devoured as a kid and I hope young Chinese (and non-Chinese!) readers will enjoy reading it and hopefully learning a thing or two about Chinese mythology.

Beyond the mythology, Faryn's story is a story about seeing people for who they are rather tha
Amélie Zhao
May 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I'm beyond THRILLED for this book to debut. I binged it over a flight and stayed up late into the night at my hotel reading this, and it was a rollercoaster filled with strong Chinese warrior protagonists, Chinese deities/gods and legends and myths and DRAGONS, set in a variety of Manhattan Chinatowns. The characters in it stole my heart with their stubborn and snarky personalities and their banter. And the humor, oh, the humor in this book is to DIE for. Guys, true story -- I literally woke up ...more
CW (The Quiet Pond) ✨
The Dragon Warrior is dedicated to immigrants, children of immigrants, and diaspora kids everywhere, and this book is a beautiful, heartfelt, and wonderful story that does its dedication justice.
I feel so honoured to have read this book, which is, very evidently, a book of Katie's heart -and is now of mine.

- Follows Faryn, a 12-year old girl who finds herself to be the foretold Heaven Breaker, a warrior powerful enough to wield a celestial weapon and able to command dragons.
- The Dragon Warrior
may ➹
The Dragon Warrior follows a 12-year-old multiracial girl named Faryn, who embarks on a series of quests with friends and family in order to prove that she is the legendary Heaven Breaker, the powerful warrior who serves the Jade Emperor.

I don’t want to compare ALL Middle Grade books about kids going on quests to Percy Jackson, but this book truly gives off strong Percy Jackson vibes with its inclusion of gods, quests, and sarcastic humor. (And you know it’s a high honor for me to compare this to Percy Jackson
✩ Ashley ✩
OMG that cover!!! 😍 Now I’m even more excited (and I was stoked before!)!! 😆
May 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, middle-grade
I had the pleasure of reading an early draft of this book, and HOLY. WOW. You'll be sucked into this wonderful world from page one, and fall in love with this amazing crew of characters. You'll laugh one page, and cry the next. I love how intricately Katie explores family and Chinese culture, and how rich the mythology this book is. As a die-hard Rick Riordan fan, I don't comp books to him lightly, but seriously: if you grew up reading Rick Riordan books, you'll want to read this book IMMEDIATEL ...more
chloe ♡
i received a review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. all opinions below are my own.

4.5 stars

reading the dragon warrior was the bookish equivalent of having a nice cup of hot milk while snuggling up in warm blankets. it made me feel the warm fuzzies all over, and i’m so excited for the diaspora kids who will get to read this book soon, and be able to relate to faryn and alex’s experiences.

the gods didn’t give me ultimate strength. my friends and family did.

the dragon warrior is a beautifully told story about family, friendship, anddid.
Francesca Flores
Aug 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I had the great pleasure of reading this book earlier this year, and even then, it was fantastic! I can't wait to re-read the final published version of this!

It has EVERYTHING - magic, adventure, strong family dynamics, hilarious jokes, food, a fantastic protagonist, heart-warming passages, and a story that keeps you glued to the page.

Apart from that, it's just extremely unique--a fantasy adventure based on Chinese deities, and spent racing through Chinatowns spread across the US? A
Did you just say Percy Jackson vibes?????? And October???? Yup, my birth month will gonna be filled with diverse books that's for sure.
Note: This is an OwnVoices review! But please note I'm not familiar with all the mythology present in this book. I also won this as an ARC from Katie Zhao's twitter giveaway :D Thank you to Katie for sending this my way <3

Overall 5/5 stars!
The Dragon Warrior is a delight through and through. This is the book I desperately needed when I was the characters' age! The humor is spot on and only gets better as you keep reading. I highly recommend this book, especially for Chinese diaspora/>
julianna ➹
look at that gorgeous cover!! this book is going to own my heart <3
May 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I LOVE THIS BOOK SO MUCH. Omg. Omg. THE DRAGON WARRIOR is such a gorgeous book that dives right into Chinese mythology set in our modern world. Katie is such a masterful writer and some of the big, emotional reveals in this made me audibly gasp. The world is lush, the characters jump off the page, and IT'S SO FUNNY. I'm not a person that laughs easily when I read--getting a snort out of me is pretty impressive. But this book had me laughing every chapter! Like, OUT LOUD! It's the only book I've ...more
Kelly Brigid ♡
Oct 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: middle-grade, fantasy
One of the most fun adventures I've ever had the pleasure to read through! A perfect little mixture of everything I adore from Percy Jackson with brilliant incorporation of Chinese culture! A must read for every bookworm! 💛
Sep 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

The Dragon Warrior is an action packed middle grade that will make your mouth water. There are sassy characters who will charm you, vulnerable ones who will worm their way into your heart, and moments that will make you smile. It's a story about family, forgiveness, forgiveness and believing in yourself. The Dragon Warrior is perfect for fans of Aru Shah (which is the last middle
Jun 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own, nice, arc, anticipated, fantasy, mg
Actual rating: 3.5

I'm so conflicted help

On one hand,

Ghost of Christmas Present: I adore the author (#ownvoices) and what she set out to accomplish is simply amazing. I really wish to support her endeavors no matter what. This novel gives a wonderful chance to POC girls (in this case, Chinese-American) to see themselves in a magical adventure of heroes and demons worthy of Rick Riordan. The divine world is rich, well-described, easy to acces and yet beyond any dream. Plus, the plot took s/>Ghost
May 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is the book for every little girl who read the Percy Jackson series and wanted to see herself as the hero of an amazing world. This is the book for girls with enormous hearts who believe love is more powerful than raw strength and physical attributes. This is the book for girls who have never seen themselves kick butt in middle grade books. This is the book Scholastic Book Fairs need to hand to every single middle grade reader in this country. This. Book.

It makes me laugh until I cry, and
caitlin ✶
Oct 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Like this review? Check out my blog for more :))

The gods didn't give me ultimate strength. My friends and family did.

This book is basically Chinese Percy Jackson, and I'm not saying this just because it's in the same genre and age group. Like PJO, The Dragon Warrior centers around mythology, but has a modern take on gods and goddesses that portrays them in a less godly light. The prose and dialogue are brimming with sarcasm and actually drew a snicker from me once or twice! And in the same vein as PJO, this book is a quest story

Tiffany Chiang

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for an ARC in exchange for an honest review!

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belle ☆ミ (mybookcastle)
reading about my culture so fleshed out in a book?
the best feeling ever.

Nov 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was so lucky to be able to read THE DRAGON WARRIOR early! It was this perfect blend of heart and humor, with settings so well-described I could envision myself in each of the different Chinatowns or the center of the Jade Society’s compound. The story was rich with truths, showing how friendships crack and mend, how family bonds might be tested, and how doing the right thing isn’t always what you think it is. The adventure in this book swept me away in a golden chariot led by flying horses!! ...more
May 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: To all fans of Percy Jackson
I was one of the lucky few who got to read an early draft of this book and let's just say, you're not prepared for this.

This book, I began to read in the middle of a boring lecture and immediately, I said immediately, it sucked me inside its world. The description and the world building alone are splendidly done. I could imagine myself in the world. On top of that, Katie is a master of spinning emotions and surprising you with twists and turns just across the corner of the events. Also, she's s
Tiffany Chiang
Oct 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Hello, everyone! I’m extremely excited for today’s blog post because I’m participating in the official blog tour for The Dragon Warrior which is hosted by Shealea from Caffeine Book Tours. I was so excited to be invited to review this #OwnVoices middle-grade fantasy because this was a story that spoke to my childhood. Through the incorporation of Chinese mythology and culture, Katie Zhao has crafted a world that touches the heart of every immigrant and child of diaspora. From hilarious dialogue ...more
Chloe Gong
Sep 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I'm so freaking happy that books like this exist. 12 year old Chloe would have adored the HECK out of it (though 20 year old Chloe did too!). Faryn is fierce, the plot is tight, the jokes are hilarious, the Chinese aspect is WONDERFUL, and YE YE!!! MY FAVE!!! It has my whole heart.
Kristi Housman Confessions of a YA Reader
Before I start my review, I just have to say how much I love that cover!  It's so perfect and I love that I have an idea of what Faryn was supposed to look like.

This was a fast paced book, full of adventure and culture.  I thought the author did an amazing job with explaining all the gods/goddesses and the demons.  I'm not as familiar with Chinese culture as I would like to be, but I was definitely able to follow this and also learn from it.

Faryn l
Jul 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: friends
A fun book that's the true spirit of a middle grade—you'll want to read THE DRAGON WARRIOR as soon as you can!!!

I'm so glad I got to read this book! The characters are charming, the adventure is fast-paced, and the whole thing was an utter delight to read. This is the beginning of a series that kids will absolutely love and would make a kick-butt Saturday morning cartoon. This is a book that will make even the most reluctant of readers dive straight in.

One thing that make
Claire Bartlett

Faryn is a girl who lives with her brother and grandfather in Chinatown. The three of them are ridiculed outcasts, trying to keep their heads down. That becomes hard to do when Faryn is called to be the latest in a long and glorious line of supernatural warriors - and tasked with defending the Gods themselves. As Faryn and her brother race to find the island of the Gods, they get a chance to find out wh
Pragati Chaudhari
May 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I'm so very glad that this is happening! OMG!!

This book is so very good and I was literally a mess while I was reading it. Such amazing writing, such a phenomenal plot and awesome characters! This book is such a treat and I'm really, really, really happy that this is getting pubbed because Katie deserves this. And so much more!!
Ms. Yingling
Aug 11, 2019 rated it liked it
E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus

Falun (Faryn) Liun and her brother Alex are being raised by their grandfather, Ye Ye, after their father, Ba, a dragon warrior, went missing several years ago. They live in San Francisco's Chinatown, but are not appreciated by the more wealthy members of the Jade Society. The leader, Mao, is openly hostile, as are others, like Wang and Yuhao, who are Faryn's age. Moli. Faryn's former best friend, also ignores her. During Lunar new year, Far
Sep 12, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is gonna be awesome for readers who grew up with the Chinese folklore it's based on. As someone not familiar with that pantheon, I struggled a lot to keep up, and was very glad to see 'Glossary TK' in the back of my ARC.

I did really enjoy reading a good old-fashioned riddle quest for the first time in a while! It just also... simultaneously felt like too much information (four main characters, plus a variety of gods with plans beyond mortal knowledge, and demons and other secondary character
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