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Reviewed by Susana Ramirez Baena
Opening sentence
‘If you bring the star to me, I will reward you… You, my child, will be reborn in my image–as a Gom and a healer. And I will restore your sister’s life.’
In The Last Fallen Star by Graci Kim, Riley Oh is part of a community of gifted people, such as her sister and adoptive parents. Riley is different from all of the Goms (healers). She is a saram, a non-gifted person. All she wants is to be gifted and part of the five clans.

Now, more about the clans. Clans are groups of mortals chosen to do the goddess's work in the human world and are based in Los Angeles, and they enter their temple by the Korean fried chicken cart. The five clans are the Gom healers, the Gumiho illusionists, the Samjogo seers, the Miru protectors, the Tokki infusers, and lastly the Horangi.

The Horangi clan was part of the gifted community as scholars until they got expelled because of their thirst for power. Afterwards, there was a devastating battle, many people died on both sides. After the battle, they disconnected from their patron goddess, leaving them powerless.

OK, now back to Riley. Hattie, Riley’s sister, is about to be initiated into the Gom Clan, and since Riley wishes she could get initiated into the clan, they make a plan. Hattie learned a spell to make Riley a Gom. The plan was to summon the Mago Halmi, but it didn’t go the way they expected. Emment, Riley’s best friend, helped them. Without him, they would be done for.

Graci Kim has a different way of telling a story than other authors. She tells a story with lessons but they are subtle and significant. Such as that family is an important part of your life and you should never let them go.

I liked to read about myths but I stopped. This story makes me want to read more. This story is based on Korean mythology. The Last Fallen Star is published under the Rick Riordan Presents Publishing Label. I have never heard about him, but I started investigating, and he normally writes about myths. In this book, the more you read the more you want to be in this world and eat the food. Also, where can I find the K-Fried chicken?

This story makes everyone feel like they fit in, even me who has no connection to Korean culture. Even all the magical scenarios are relatable which is refreshing because some mythical stories make my life feel boring! The main idea is about family and relationships. This heartwarming story is about how you can always count on your family and they can always count on you.

I liked the book but it went too quick on some parts and too slow on others. I was good in the story line but it skimmed through some important parts, in my opinion. This book is made for people my age but it still felt a bit bland. In some parts, it has good emotion. This book is very easy to understand but it also has some messages that make you keep thinking. For example: “Don’t let a curse define who you can and can’t be. Only you have the power to decide that.” Which says you be who you want to be not what everyone tells you to be. While there are other parts:

‘I crack up and slap my thigh so hard it stings. "You know what this means, right?"
Hattie frowns. "No, what?"
"If you guys get married and hyphenate your last names, you'll be Hattie Oh-Noh.”’

This part is just funny.

This book is so good but I am waiting for the next book! Graci Kim is such a good author, she nailed the story.

If you like to read fantasy or mythological stories, this is your story. This book will make your bookshelf look and feel different. What drew me to the story was the blurb because of the keywords they used. All in all, this is a good book.

- Susana is 11 and lives in Hamilton.
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
ISBN: 9781368059633
Format: Hardback
Publication: 2021
Ages: 10+
Themes: Fantasy, Korean mythology, family