Book Review: Reflection by Elizabeth Lim

What if Mulan had to travel to the Underworld?

When Captain Shang is mortally wounded by Shan Yu in battle, Mulan must travel to the Underworld, Diyu, in order to save him from certain death. But King Yama, the ruler of Diyu, is not willing to give Shang up easily. With the help of Shang’s great lion guardian ShiShi, Mulan must traverse Diyu to find Shang’s spirit, face harrowing obstacles, and leave by sunrise⁠—or become King Yama’s prisoner forever. Moreover, Mulan is still disguised as the soldier called Ping, wrestling with the decision to reveal her true identity to her closest friend. Will Mulan be able to save Shang before it’s too late? Will he ever be able to trust her again? Or will she lose him–and be lost in the Underworld⁠—forever?


I had always admired Mulan ever since I was a little girl so when I heard that there was a retelling, I eagerly hunted for a copy of the book! The story of Reflection occurs after Mulan causes an avalanche that decimates most of the Hun army. However, unlike the Disney version, the story takes a different turn because Captain Shang Lee is fatally injured during this incident. Unable to heal from his wounds, his soul drifts off to the Underworld, and Mulan travels down to the Underworld to bring Captain Lee’s soul back to the living.

Mulan’s journey to the Underworld is action-packed and I loved how the author created the Underworld. I’m not sure if it is based purely on her imagination or if it is based on mythology but the world that she created was so mystical. It was also so well described that when I was reading it, I could envision what the Underworld looked like. It was so easy to imagine it, that there were times that I felt that there was a movie in my mind while I was reading because the scenes were just forming in my head.

Overall, this is a great book that people across different age groups can enjoy and I highly recommend it!

Tweetable Quotes

“I am Fa Mulan, a girl who would sacrifice her life for her family and for China. I am a girl who journeyed into the Underworld to save her friend from dying. I am a girl who has fought battle after battle to finally recognize herself in the mirror. And now I do.”
― Elizabeth Lim

“Only the brave may enter, but only the worthy may leave.”
― Elizabeth Lim, Reflection

“‘The flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all.”
― Elizabeth Lim, Reflection

Synopsis from

6 thoughts on “Book Review: Reflection by Elizabeth Lim

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  1. Mulan is way inspirational than any heroine I have seen and frankly speaking she made me believe I can be more just by having a brave heart and here I am today. A story turned me into my own lady hero. Great write up Days

  2. That’s true. Interesting there’s another story plot of Mulan, if not for you i wouldn’t be aware maybe after years I would hear of it but thanks to you I get to follow it up

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