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Young adult

Song of the Crimson Flower

by Julie C. Dao

Quick take

Rejection is only the start of these lovers' problems. Follow along their quest, immersed in Vietnamese folklore.

Good to know

  • Romance

  • Fast read

  • Magical

  • Quest

Why I love it

Growing up in small-town Indiana, I turned to books to learn about the world and other cultures. My favorite way to do so, then and still today, was through mythology and folktales. Reading Song of the Crimson Flower, I found myself riveted not just by the magic and lush setting, but also by the character dynamics and societal mores baked into superb worldbuilding based on a Vietnamese folktale.

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Synopsis

Will love break the spell? After cruelly rejecting Bao, the poor physician's apprentice who loves her, Lan, a wealthy nobleman's daughter, regrets her actions. So when she finds Bao's prized flute floating in his boat near her house, she takes it into her care, not knowing that his soul has been trapped inside it by an evil witch, who cursed Bao, telling him that only love will set him free. Thoug...

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