If you’re one of the readers who loved the Chinese mythology and folklore that inspired Mulan (1994), the Southeast Asian mythology and mythical creatures from Raya and the Last Dragon (2021), the magical worlds and Chinese high fantasy in Shang-Chi: Legend of the Ten Rings (2021), or this mystical new novel, then you might also love the brand-new enchanting romantic duology that’s being released in January! The first book in the Celestial Kingdom duology is called “Daughter of the Moon Goddess”, by Sue Lynn Tan, and it’s being released on January 11 2022. It’s also based on a famous Chinese legend, and the advanced book reviews for it have been amazing!
According to Goodreads, this book (which is the first book in the duology) is “a captivating debut fantasy inspired by the legend of Chang’e, the Chinese moon goddess, in which a young woman’s quest to free her mother pits her against the most powerful immortal in the realm”.
The summary reads as follows: “Growing up on the moon, Xingyin is accustomed to solitude, unaware that she is being hidden from the feared Celestial Emperor who exiled her mother for stealing his elixir of immortality. But when Xingyin’s magic flares and her existence is discovered, she is forced to flee her home, leaving her mother behind. Alone, powerless, and afraid, she makes her way to the Celestial Kingdom, a land of wonder and secrets. Disguising her identity, she seizes an opportunity to learn alongside the emperor’s son, mastering archery and magic, even as passion flames between her and the prince.”
This book is meant for adults, but it’s still got plenty of adventure and magical artifacts to satisfy any Disney fans who are secretly fantasy lovers and kids at heart! Apparently, “to save her mother, Xingyin embarks on a perilous quest, confronting legendary creatures and vicious enemies across the earth and skies. But when treachery looms and forbidden magic threatens the kingdom, she must challenge the ruthless Celestial Emperor for her dream—striking a dangerous bargain in which she is torn between losing all she loves or plunging the realm into chaos”. This book is the author’s debut novel!
If stories that merge “ancient Chinese mythology” with “a sweeping adventure of immortals and magic—where love vies with honor, dreams are fraught with betrayal, and hope emerges triumphant” are a big favorite of yours, then you might also like this Mulan retelling or the fairy tale retellings mentioned here!