Dew on Ginkgo Leaves

The Tigress and The General

Fiction - Historical - Event/Era
274 Pages
Reviewed on 12/22/2016
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Romuald Dzemo for Readers' Favorite

Todd L. Shuler takes readers on a very fast ride with intense drama and action in Dew on Ginkgo Leaves: The Tigress and The General, an action novel that features two powerful warriors - Jade Flower, aka the Tigress, and the General, Yu Luan - battling an elusive organization that has only one purpose: to sink the empire. While there is a romance developing between the two lead characters, they have to remain focused while working through an intricate network of enemies to protect the interests of the empire. The plot gets interesting while they have to fight for a course and to protect a love that animates their spirits.

The author seems to understand the Chinese tradition very well and the top-notch fighting skills of the characters, their resourcefulness and teamwork are things that embellish the plot. The conflict is introduced from the very start of the novel and Todd L. Shuler wastes no time in creating action-packed scenes, and readers can feel their pulses rising as they read on. The sense of impending danger that precedes each scene makes the story one that is just right for a movie. The descriptions are clear and the writing polished, so readers can picture the characters clearly through every scene. The plot is fairly complex, but it is the focus on action that makes it exciting. Fast-paced with many insights into characterization, some interesting social commentaries, and humor, Dew on Ginkgo Leaves: The Tigress and The General becomes a breezy read, the thing you need when your spirits sink and you want to wake up. A highly entertaining story from a skilled storyteller.

Christian Sia

Dew on Ginkgo Leaves: The Tigress and The General by Todd L. Shuler is a fast-paced, mesmerizing and action packed story set against the backdrop of traditional Chinese society. Readers are introduced to two hard-core warriors of the empire, Jade Flower (the Tigress) and Yu Luan (the General), as they take on a powerful and sinister organization that threatens to bring the Empire to its knees. The ride is exhilarating with dangers strewn on every step of the path. But there is a disturbing twist: the two warriors are in love with each other and they have to stand the ultimate test of remaining focused while protecting their love.

Todd L. Shuler has a skill for action-driven writing. The narrative voice is very clear and the simplicity of the language allows the reader to grasp the complexities of the intricate plot. The characters are well-built and watching them through intense action is thrilling. It’s hard to read Dew on Ginkgo Leaves: The Tigress and The General without thinking about the famous Chinese actors like Jet Lee or Jackie Chan, and, yes, this novel could be great on screen. The plot moves very fast and the author does a great job when it comes to POV and backstory. Although the story is action-focused, it features powerful streams of consciousness and huge psychological conflicts. I enjoyed the fact that the author used romance as a theme and as a way of creating suspense. Readers are keen to know what happens between the two warriors, and they also watch as the love between the two drives them to make decisions in the midst of harrowing dangers.

K.J. Simmill

Dew on Ginkgo Leaves is a historical fiction story written by author Todd L. Shuler. Wu Lei and Jade Flower had been the perfect team. They fought side by side in deadly union in protection of the empire, and their battle cry struck terror into the hearts of all. Then, after one gruelling battle, Jade Flower's cry was not echoed by her husband. She found him in the grip of death, and his passing would have marked the end of her own life, if not for the dart she found embedded within him. She knew then no enemy was responsible for his death; they had been betrayed by one of their own. She vowed to seek out his murderer, but the empire had not finished with her. Deemed essential, she was quickly reassigned into another unit of husband and wife warriors, forbidden her time of mourning, and assigned a new partner. Despite this new loyalty, she vows to find her husband's assassin, but first, the tigress that she is needs to be tamed. She must learn to see through the rage, to transform this act of personal vengeance into an act for the empire. Only with such detachment and clarity can she hope to bring down her husband’s killer, and remove the threat they pose to the empire itself.

Dew on Ginkgo Leaves is a truly gripping read. I found myself immersed in ancient China, complete with traditions and historical accuracy. I learnt many new things, and was encouraged to recall some I knew from history lessons and personal research, yet at no time did I feel I was being schooled in this era. The writing is smooth, gripping, and wrought with well-scripted, and realistic action. Todd L. Shuler writes a believable tale based in the ancient era and does so brilliantly. I thoroughly enjoyed reading Dew on Ginkgo Leaves. It was a truly fascinating tale of love, loss, patriotism, and deceit, certainly more than enough to keep any reader turning the pages.