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Paper Dragons

Paper Dragons

The Fight for the Hidden Realm


Paper Dragons

About the Book

A 12-year-old girl wins an invitation to train as an apprentice to immortals in the first book of the new must-read magical series destined to take the world by storm—perfect for fans of Amari and the Night Brothers, Skandar and Eragon. Let the competition begin!

“A new classic fantasy adventure.” Eoin Colfer, author of the internationally best-selling Artemis Fowl series

An outsider in her village above the cloud sea, 12-year-old orphan Yeung Zhi Ging’s only hope of escape is to win the single invitation to train as a Silhouette: an apprentice to the immortals. After her ill-fated attempt to impress the Silhouette scout leads to a dragon attack on the jade mountain, Zhi Ging is sure that her chances, and her life, are over. But the scout spots her potential and offers her protection and a second chance. She’s in.

In her lessons in Hok Woh, the underwater realm of the immortals, Zhi Ging must face the challenging trials set by her teachers to prove that she’s worthy of being a Silhouette—despite her rivals' attempts to sabotage her. But as Zhi Ging’s power grows, so do the rumours of the return of the Fui Gwai, an evil spirit that turns people into grey-eyed thralls.

When the impossible happens and the Fui Gwai attack the Silhouettes, can Zhi Ging use her newly uncovered talents to save her friends and the world beyond? Or will the grey-eyed spirit consume them all?

“A soaring, luminous new world." —Jessica Townsend, New York Times bestselling author of The Nevermoor series 

Product Details

On sale: March 5, 2024
Age: 10 and up
Grade: Grades 6-8
Page count: 384 Pages
ISBN: 9780593706114
Reading level: Lexile: 940L | Fountas/Pinnell: W

Author Bio

Siobhan McDermott was born in Hong Kong and grew up on a steady stream of stories filled with Chinese legends and Irish folklore. She now lives in the UK and continues to order dim sum in Cantonese tinged with a distinctly Dublin lilt. Paper Dragons: The Fight for the Hidden Realm is her debut novel and was chosen as Waterstones Children's Book of the Month. The story was inspired by moments across her life: from childhood ferry trips between Lantau Island and Hong Kong, to travelling around Taiwan, Italy and Spain.


“A new classic fantasy adventure.” 
—Eoin Colfer, author of the internationally best-selling Artemis Fowl series

"A soaring luminous new world." 
—Jessica Townsend, New York Times bestselling author of the Nevermoor series 

★ "This imaginative world delights at every turn. Great for fans of world building and magical schools, the richly imagined setting introduces readers to a world they’ll be eager to keep exploring." —Booklist, starred review

"McDermott crafts a fantastical tale of one tween’s bravery and determination." —Publishers Weekly

"Classic themes of finding friendship and one’s own identity are refreshed by a Hong Kong–inspired fantasy setting....A solid contribution to the magical boarding school genre." —Kirkus Reviews

"With a plucky orphan heroine learning to harness mysterious powers in a well-realized fantastical setting built off Cantonese cultural motifs, this hits the sweet spots in the magic-school novel genre." —School Library Journal