Empress of All Seasons by Emiko Jean Read Along – Part III

Title Empress of All Seasons

Author Emiko Jean

Section Covered Part III (Chapters 34 – Chapter 56, the end)

Initial Thoughts

Mari was the Empress. Taro loved her. Everything was going well. What could go wrong?

Favorite Quotes

“To love is to suffocate.”

— Page 297

Emiko Jean’s writing style is incredibly profound for a YA novel. There are themes and wisdom in her words that you really don’t see much of in this genre. I really have to stop and appreciate her writing ability.

“Do not let your fear decided your fate.”

— Page 301

The quote reminds me of one of my favorite quotes from the Princess Diaries.

“Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather, the judgement that something is more important than fear.”

Both quotes remind me that there’s no place for fear when you’re the empress. Mari had been through so much and she still found a way to be inspired. Her friends and her people, yokai and humans, alike gave her strength.

Favorite Character

Mari – finally, Mari was my favorite character. She became the Empress I wanted her to be. She learned so much about who she was meant to be. I loved her character evolution.

Something I Wasn’t Crazy About

The romance – I didn’t like how the romance was pushed to the back burner. Taro loved Mari and yet he had no faith in her (until the absolute last second). Akira loved Mari but he also abandoned his love. I get the idea that their revolution was more important that individual happiness, but I wanted a happy ending with romance!

Final Thoughts

This book was incredibly thought provoking. I really liked the social structure that Emiko Jean used showing real historical problems through the dynamic of yokai and humans.

This book gave me a lot to think about and I really enjoyed analyzing it piece by piece.

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