BOOK REVIEWS

Peasprout Chen, Future Legend of Skate and Sword Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2018-09-29 
Review Score: 3 out of 5 star From 0 user ratings
ISBN:1250165695
LANGUAGE:English

"Going in, I wasn't sure what to expect from this book. Martial arts mixed with ice skating sounded a bit too far-fetched for me, as strange as that sounds, but, once you make yourself comfortable in the world, it grows on you. Lien creates such an immersable world here, though I wish we could have had seen at least some moments of Peasprout in Shin so that we could see the differences in cultures and power dynamics a bit better, but maybe we'll see that in the future.

At first, I thought things came a little too easy for Peasprout. She excelled so much in whatever she did that it was starting to become a tad unbelievable. However, it becomes clear that Peasprout's struggle in the book doesn't come from her academics, but from the prejudices she encounters and basically being an outsider in this new world.

I'm very interested to see what Lien will touch on in the next installment and how this world can become even bigger.
" said.

" 4.5! Utterly charming and imaginative, while also being profound and thought provoking. The world of Pearl is fantastically wrought and I love the important lessons Peasprout learns (I’m also going to start using “Ten thousand years of stomach gas” as an expression of frustration...) " said.

"In Henry Lien’s debut middle-grade novel, PEASPROUT CHEN: FUTURE LEGEND OF SKATE AND SWORD, we meet Peasprout Chen, a spunky martial-arts figure skater from the mythical county of Shin. When she and her painfully shy younger brother, Cricket, are sent to the Pearl Famous Academy of Skate and Sword to hone their skills—and, Peasprout hopes, for her to become a future legend in the deadly martial-arts form of wu liu—Peasprout encounters more difficulties than she expected, including a posse of mean girls and an accusation of vandalism. Can Peasprout rise above the fray and skate to the top? Find out and see! A delightful, gracefully written epic, filled with excitement and adventure. Sure to please readers of middle-grade fantasy, particularly Harry Potter fans!
" said.

"Did not finish - I got about a third of the way through. The concept is unique and interesting, but the execution is flawed. I found the world in this book to be very confusing. The history, political dynamics, and even the make up of the world were never fully explained. Does the pearl material cover the entire land of Pearl? Does everyone have to wear skates to travel around? Why do they wear fog glasses? Why does the country of Shin want the pearl so badly? I also found Peasprout to be a bit inflexible and arrogant, hopefully her character arc addresses these issues but I was not compelled to continue the journey with her. It's getting great reviews from other places and here on goodreads so I may come back to it, but at this point I have other things I'd rather be reading! " said.

" I have a lot of conflicting feelings about thisss @__@ " said.

"Great fun! This was a bit of a departure from what I've been reading lately, and unlike any middle grade/YA I have read before. I absolutely love this world that the author, Henry Lien, created. The setting is unique, especially to someone more used to reading about western cultures, and brought me back to my past love of manga. He's created a believable world and iceskating/martial arts system in such a remarkable way. I'm a visual person, and could imagine the fantastical figure skating battles and Pearl-formed buildings really well from the text. I also loved all of the descriptions of food. The story is filled with eccentric characters, boarding school drama, and epic teen battles but also feels so relatable. The interactions between Peasprout and her brother Cricket often made me teary-eyed. I'm pumped for the second book, especially after that ending!!" said.

" Wow. Just wow. This book was one of my biggest surprises this year. Full review to come, but let's just say that if you're looking for a fun MG adventure, look no further than this bizarre mashup that I can only describe as Crouching Tiger, Hidden Harry Potter... on ice. I read an advance copy of this book. " said.

" What a fun, beautiful, and original book. Henry Lien's PEASPROUT CHEN transported me to Pearl, where the future practitioners of wu liu train. The world-building in this book is breathtaking from every angle. I won't write much for fear of spoilers, but I loved this book, it's brave, yet flawed, hero, and I thoroughly enjoyed sharing Peasprout's journey in a world where so much was not as it seemed. " said.

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