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Kylie Chan

Dark Heavens, book 1

HarperCollins (2006) 

ISBN: 9780732282967

Reviewed by Tansy Rayner Roberts (this review was originally published in October 2006)

There have been some really great debuts for Australian fantasy writers in the last twelve months, with Karen Miller’s adventurous Kingmaker, Kingbreaker duology, and Grace Dugan’s promising first novel, The Silver Road. Like these two exciting new authors, Kylie Chan has produced a fast-paced and innovative debut novel, which adds a new dimension to the general picture of Australian fantasy fiction.

Emma is an Australian living and working in the childcare industry in Hong Kong, her English language skills being particularly prized. When she loses her job in a prestigious kindergarten for making the lessons a bit too much fun, she is snapped up for a full time nanny position by one of her regular clients, a mysterious and handsome Chinese businessman, Mr Chen, with an adorable, completely over-scheduled four year old daughter, Simone.

Sounds like one of those romantic comedies where the nanny falls in love with her employer and fixes his family while she’s at it? You wouldn’t be far wrong, though there is far more to this novel than that plotline. Despite the fact that it takes a long time to be officially revealed (to Emma, at least, who is a touch dense on this particular subject), it’s not too much of a spoiler to reveal that Mr Chen is not a mobster (as Emma first believes) but is actually a Chinese god, as are many of his strange and entertaining cronies. He and his half-immortal daughter are under attack from various demons, and his current lifespan is running short. It is vital that he trains his daughter to be independent before he has to leave her, and that is only a matter of a few years. Falling in love with Emma is not part of the equation… Read the rest of this entry »

Kylie Chan

Journey to Wudang, Book 3

Harper Voyager (2011)

ISBN: 978-0-7322-8688-0

Reviewed by Mitenae

Emma continues looking after Wudang Mountain while John is gone but Kitty Kwok is still on the loose and undetectable copies have infiltrated Wudang. But something large and dangerous is coming just as John (Xuan Wu) begins to slowly retake human form.

Heaven to Wudang is the sixth book about Emma, John, Simone and Leo and although it’s supposed to be the final book of the second trilogy, it doesn’t come across that way. This is a story about a family and a world and it doesn’t lend itself well to being a trilogy (or a series of trilogies). This book feels incomplete and the ending doesn’t come across as the cliffhanger it should. It feels like it’s an instalment of a regular series, rather than the end of a trilogy.

Kylie Chan

Journey to Wudang, Book 2

HarperVoyager (2010)

ISBN: 978-0-7322-8687-3

Reviewed by Mitenae

Hell to Heaven continues on fairly much from where Earth to Hell left off and it is very much a middle book.

John is still missing and they are trying to keep their lives and the Northern Heavens together as best they can. Leo has returned from Hell and although he is a Celestial,  he’s gone straight back to work. Emma is trying to find a way to rid herself of the demon essence. Simone has to learn to control her yin and accept her nature and Michael is coming to terms with his mother’s death and that she was a demon.

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