TITLE: The Dragon's Pearl
GENRE: YA Fantasy
Fourteen-year-old Misha has always lived in the shadow of her mother, the most powerful mage in South Korea. When she accidentally frees a dragon from his magical slumber, Misha must track him down, now masquerading as a human in the underbelly of Seoul before he wrecks vengeance on the person who sealed him away in the first place: her own mother.
“I have time for one story,” her mother said. She was dressed in an eel-black suit, her phone in her pocket ready to vibrate and whisk her away at a moment’s notice. “Two, if my secretary drove off the bridge and hasn’t called yet.”
“Nothing about waterfalls,” Misha said, feeling toasty under a blanket of goose feathers. She’d hate to go to the bathroom now. “No tidal waves, either.”
“Sure,” her mother said. Then she proceeded to pick the one picture book with the ocean on the cover. Misha only forgave her because it was The Blind Man’s Daughter, her favorite. Her aunt had read it to her many times.
“Once upon a time, there was a girl who loved her blind father very much.” Her mother paused. “She would have done anything in the world for him.”
Every story came with a bad guy and in this folktale, it was the Dragon King, causing trouble for merchants who wanted to sail to China. He thrashed his golden scaly body under the ocean, sinking ship after ship. It was an epic tantrum.
“So he’s like that dragon in the news,” Misha said, eager to show off. Most grownups thought she was too young to understand her mother’s job, but they didn’t know about the encyclopedias she’d read, the Time feature on her mother she’d cut out. “Your nemesis.”
“Do you even know what that word means?” her mother said, with a wry smile.
“It means someone you have to stop.”