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Philomel (2017-10)
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Books for very young children, children’s picture books & activity books


by Dao, Julie

Debut YA fantasy for fans of Stealing Snow and Snow White and the Huntsman.

Set in the mystical Far East, this reimagining of The Evil Queen legend is about one peasant girl's quest to become Empress--and the darkness she must unleash to achieve her destiny.

Eighteen-year-old Xifeng (pronounced She-fung) is beautiful. The stars say she is destined for greatness, that she is meant to be Empress of Feng Lu. But only if she embraces the darkness within her.

Growing up as a peasant in a forgotten village on the edge of the map, Xifeng longs to fulfill the destiny promised to her by her cruel aunt, the witch Guma, who has read the cards and seen glimmers of Xifeng's majestic future. But is the price of greatness too high? To claim her place beside the Emperor, Xifeng must cast aside Wei, the young man who has longed to marry her since childhood. And darker still, she will have to embrace the callous magic that runs through her veins--magic fueled by eating the hearts of the recently killed--for the god who has sent her on this journey will not be satisfied until his power is complete.

Set in an East Asian-inspired fantasy world filled with both breathtaking pain and beauty, FOREST OF A THOUSAND LANTERNS possesses all the hallmarks of masterful fantasy--dazzling magic, heartbreaking romance, and a world that hangs in the balance.

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A stunning reimagining of the Evil Queen. Filled with treacherous courtesans, dark magic, terrible choices, and bloody hearts, Julie Dao’s exquisite take on this classic villain rises far above the average retelling.

Quote: Stephanie Garber, New York Times bestselling author of Caraval

Paste named Forest of a Thousand Lanterns to its "Best YA Books of 2018" list!

Quote: Paste

Russian: AST ; Spanish: Roca Editorial

Quote: Penguin USA

Forest of a Thousand Lanternsis dark and seductive; beware, this tale will draw you deeper into the forest than you want to go. Disturbingly good.

Quote: Stacey Lee, award-winning author of Outrun the Moon

Bustle (42 million uvpm) exclusively reveals the cover and an excerpt of FOREST OF A THOUSAND LANTERNS by Julie C. Dao!

Quote: Bustle named Forest of a Thousand Lanterns to its best YA of the year list!


LUSHLY WRITTEN. . .tantalizingreading.

Review: Publishers Weekly, starred review

An enchanting debut with a powerful and ambitious lead. Vivid and seductive, Forest of a Thousand Lanterns is one of the best debuts of the year.

Quote: Zoraida Córdova, award-winning author of Labyrinth Lost

Bustle (42 million uvpm) includes the book in “13 Obsession-Worthy Young Adult Fantasy Books Hitting Shelves in 17” and “9 YA Retellings Out In 2017 That Breathe New Life Into the Fairytales & Classics” round-ups.

Quote: Bustle

The Mary Sue (1.2 million uvpm) ran a Q&A with author Julie C. Dao

Quote: The Mary Sue

Rich in detail and full of gore and blood, this dark novel WILLSATISFY 'GAME OF THRONES' FANS.

Review: School Library Journal

This is a book filled with turmoil and drama that will leave you wanting more.with wonderfully descriptive writing and prose WORTHY OF A MOVIE, this is one book that you'll want to check out.

Review: RT Book Review

I can't wait for Julie Dao's Forest of a Thousand Lanterns — a reimagining of the evil queen from Snow White based on Asian folklore and mythology that promises to be lush and immersive and gripping. In order to become Empress of Feng Lu, Xifeng must unleash a jealous god on the world and set free the viciousness of her own soul.

Quote: Kelly Gilbert, author of Conviction

A richly developed fantasy world coupled with an ambitious anti-heroine of complex agency, this story shines and surprises at every turn. Julie C. Dao is a talent to watch.

Quote: Marie Lu, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Young Elites

Listen up, fantasy addicts: Get ready to dive headfirst into A GORGEOUS, DARK AND MYSTERIOUS NEW WORLD.

Review: PureWow

Set in an East Asian-inspired fantasy world filled with both breathtaking pain and beauty, Forest of a Thousand Lanterns possesses all the hallmarks of masterful fantasy: dazzling magic, heartbreaking romance, and a world that hangs in the balance. Fans of Heartless, Stealing Snow, and Red Queen will devour this stunning debut.

Review: Goodreads

Readers will appreciate the sweeping fantasy saga lifted from East Asian dynasties and endearingCHARACTERS THAT ARE BEAUTIFULLY RENDERED.

Review: Kirkus

Dark, lush, and intense, Forest of a Thousand Lanterns draws you into a world filled with mystery and intrigue, led by a heroine determined to grasp her destiny. A stunning debut!

Quote: Cindy Pon, author of WANT and Serpentine

This weekend Julie Dao was in the spotlight as a guest on author Claribel Ortega's up-and-coming Write Or Die podcast, in which she talks about her publishing journey (it's very inspiring!) and her secret Harry Potter fan fiction!

Quote: Write Or Die Podcast

Buzzfeed (69,875,666 uvpm) included the novel in their holiday gift guide - and also in their YA gift guide!

Quote: Buzzfeed

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns will entertain you. It's an intriguing story set in a lush, descriptive world that will leave you wanting more.

Review: Black Girl Nerds

If you've ever read a story, watched a movie, or played a game where the protagonist struggles with their dark side and secretly rooted for them to give into evil's SEDUCTIVE call,FOREST OF A THOUSAND LANTERNSIS ABSOLUTELY THE NOVEL FOR YOU.

Review: Newsweek’s Player One

Magnetic, seductive, and alluring, Dao’s Forest of a Thousand Lanterns is a lush, captivating read about desire and the lengths to which we will go to find our true destiny.

Quote: S. Jae-Jones, New York Times bestselling author of Wintersong

Set in an Asian-inspired fantasy realm, Dao's debut novel is A MASTERFUL REIMAGINING of the early life of Snow White's Evil Queen. Subverting the all-too-white world of fairy tales, this novel will trap readers in a lush, dangerously dark, and often beautiful world from which they will want no escape.

Review: Booklist, starred review

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