Book Review: Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley



Release date: April 28th 2015

3.5 stars

Aza Ray has been sick her whole life. What she has is so rare the doctors actually named it after her and the disease makes it almost impossible for her to breathe, speak, live her life. The doctors keep predicting her death and she keeps defying them. For now. When Aza Ray sees a ship in the sky, everyone thinks it’s just a side effect of her medication. Only Jason, her best friend, listens to her. Tragedy strikes before they can discover anything about the mysterious ship and Aza finds herself lost to our world – and returned to one called Magonia. Suddenly Aza can breathe and she’s not weak. She’s someone important to the survival of Magonia. But when war pits Magonia against Earth, what side will Aza choose? Magonia, where she can finally feel alive? Or Earth, where everyone she loves lives?

This book took me by surprise with how original of a concept it held within its pages. I wasn’t quite sure what to fully expect just from the synopsis but it ended up being a story that was interesting and I found myself enjoying. It was a mythology I’d never hard of before but it was one I would definitely like to know more about.

Aza Ray, the main character, was really likeable. She struggled through her daily life on Earth and was at the point where she just accepted her disease and her eventual death. It gave her character a maturity past her teenage years. The growth she showed as a character was just as unique as the plot. On Earth, she was physically weak but confident in who she was and her non-existent future. On Magonia, she was physically strong but she had no idea who she was anymore. Her whole world had changed, everything was so different, and that was something she had to come to accept.

I loved the friendship between Aza and Jason. He was adorable and so loyal and the scenes between them were so cute. The story of how they had met was brought up more than once and it never failed to make me smile.

The descriptions of the world of Magonia and its people were amazing. Ships in the sky, inhabitant who looked half-human, half-bird, squallwhales, all so beautifully vivid. The whole mythology was really well done. They create storms and natural disasters to cover up stealing crops from Earth. They do this with magical songs and the more powerful the Magonian, the more powerful the effect they have on the weather. There was a lot to the mythology and the magic of Magonia, which made it the type of book where every sentence felt important. Skim a paragraph and some important world-building or magical information could be missed. It meant the book wasn’t a light or fast read.

It was very imaginative with a great main character and I’m looking forward to seeing more of this world.

*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.



Filed under books, reviews, ya books

4 responses to “Book Review: Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley

  1. This book looks pretty interesting, this is the first I’ve heard of it! Great review:)

  2. Pingback: Weekly Reading Recap | Overflowing Bookshelves

  3. Pingback: April Wrap-Up/May TBR | Overflowing Bookshelves

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