The Captain’s Log – dragon pearl (Yoon Ha Lee)

Ahoy there me mateys!  I have been meaning to read more of this author’s work ever since I read the odd but interesting short story called the starship and the temple cat.  It can be found for free at the beneath ceasless skies website by clicking here.  I do own the first book in his machineries of the empire series but haven’t yet read it.  I decided to tackle this young adult title first.

The story follows a young fox spirit named Min who is biding her time until she can join the Space Forces like her older brother Jun.  Then her family is visited by a government representative who is looking for answers regarding Jun’s desertion from the Force.  Min is convinced that her brother is innocent and runs away to rescue her brother, clear his name, and bring him home.

Ah how I loved this one.  First of all its a coming-of-age story with a feisty, intelligent protagonist.  I adored Min and her trickery.  Secondly it combines Korean folklore and space travels.  Who doesn’t want space battles, lasers, magic, dragons, ghosts, and much more.  Thirdly, it showcases a loving, stable family.  Jun and Min’s relationship is lovely.   Fourthly, the ending is divine.  Fifthly . . . oh I don’t want to spoil anything.  The tale is magical and engaging and diverse and wonderful.  It was beautifully written and I am so glad I read it.  Go and get a copy and enjoy!

I am definately going to have to read more of his work.  Arrr!

Goodreads has this to say about the novel:

To keep the family safe, Min’s mother insists that none of them use any fox-magic, such as Charm or shape-shifting. They must appear human at all times. Min feels hemmed in by the household rules and resents the endless chores, the cousins who crowd her, and the aunties who judge her. She would like nothing more than to escape Jinju, her neglected, dust-ridden, and impoverished planet. She’s counting the days until she can follow her older brother, Jun, into the Space Forces and see more of the Thousand Worlds.

When word arrives that Jun is suspected of leaving his post to go in search of the Dragon Pearl, Min knows that something is wrong. Jun would never desert his battle cruiser, even for a mystical object rumored to have tremendous power. She decides to run away to find him and clear his name.

Min’s quest will have her meeting gamblers, pirates, and vengeful ghosts. It will involve deception, lies, and sabotage. She will be forced to use more fox-magic than ever before, and to rely on all of her cleverness and bravery. The outcome may not be what she had hoped, but it has the potential to exceed her wildest dreams.

To visit the author’s website go to:

Yoon Ha Lee – Author

To buy the novel please visit:

dragon pearl – Book

To add to Goodreads go to:

Yer Ports for Plunder Lis

22 thoughts on “The Captain’s Log – dragon pearl (Yoon Ha Lee)

  1. This book sounds beautiful! I’ve been seeing it around a lot lately thanks to the 2019 Asian books reading challenge many people have been taking a part in (though I cannot recall what the readalong is called…). That said, this is the only book by Lee I’ve seen around. I am definitely excited to read some of these! Is this YA novel a stand alone story?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This one was so lovely and hopeful. It currently is a standalone and seems to be likely to stay that way given the ending. But I wouldn’t be adverse to more tales in this world. I fricking loved it! Lee’s work is around and has been Hugo and Nebula nominated. But it involves mathmatics as magic from what I understand. The first book of the series, ninefox gambit, is on me list to read this year.
      x The Captain

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I love it when an author explores more in their universe but does not extend the series. Companion novels, they are often called, I believe? Seeing the world from other perspectives is always fascinating.

        Wow! Lee has been Hugo and Nebula nominated and I’ve never read any of it?! I am so disappointed in myself. I love the idea of mathematics as magic. I’ll have to check these other books out eventually. Once the series is published. 😉 Thanks for the tip!


    1. Well me best friend’s husband is friends with the author and so I was told I had no choice but to read it. And most people say if ye can push through the beginning then it will get easier. The book be on me 19 in 2019 list so I have to read it this year. No excuses. Glad to hear that ye love it. Thanks for the lovely comment.
      x The Captain


    1. Glad that ye liked this review. I do think this title has broad appeal. The author’s other works seem to be very heavy in concepts and ideas. It was interested to see him adapt for a difference audience and feel. Thanks for the comment.
      x The Captain

      Liked by 1 person

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