I absolutely adored F.C. Yee’s first book, The Epic Crush of Genie Lo, and I was delighted when the sequel was announced. Come see if The Iron Will of Genie Lo lived up to my expectations!
Genie Lo thought she was busy protecting the Bay Area from demons. But now, as a Heaven- appointed Guardian, even the well-being of demons is her responsibility—and their numbers are multiplying. Guanyin and Quentin are doing their best to help, but what they really need is for the Jade Emperor to get off his butt and deal with the crisis. While he’s AWOL, Genie nominates Guanyin to fill in his shoes, unaware that the role will go to the god who can defeat a mysterious threat to the supernatural order. Along with a few other contenders for the throne, including a former enemy, Genie and her friends embark on a Heavenly quest to an in-between world. But when faced with true danger, the group realizes that what will save the universe this time is sacrifice, not strength.
Iron Will is wonderfully fast and action-packed. The plot is sufficiently twisty, keeping things interesting throughout the whole story. I loved becoming more familiar with the more prominent Chinese gods, and Yee did his readers a favor by having them interact like a family or a ragtag band of heroes. It gave me a better glimpse into their personalities, their strengths and weaknesses.
Genie was definitely herself — angry and bullheaded and hilarious, head butting her way through the adventure in true Ruyi Jingu Bang fashion. Her relationship development with Quentin was good on the surface, but didn’t get nearly the weight it needed, given that the whole reason she became mortal was because she loved him. I feel like that was a missed opportunity and undermined the importance of the story as a whole.
The ending felt almost anti-climatic. A huge chunk of the story seems to be missing, which we will hopefully get in a future book. I wouldn’t be sad about that — I really want more Genie and Quentin stories!
Read It Or Not?
If you loved The Epic Crush of Genie Lo, you’ll love The Iron Will of Genie Lo. I recommend it for fans of the series, for sure. I laughed out loud several times, and overall I was satisfied with the story. I know I’ll be reading it again!
Until the next page turns, I remain —
Karie the Maknae
Dramas with a Side of Kimchi