Hellooo lovelies! Happy Saturday. I know I promised you a haul from YallWest, but alas that had to be put on hold for this weekend. It’s coming though, promise!
Today, I’ve come to you lovely people with a review of this beauty. The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi. Let’s take a moment to gush about how beautiful this cover is. I adore the leaves, and the gold, it’s like I’m in the garden described in the book (which, honestly sounds pretty awesome). If you don’t know what this book is about, it’s a YA historical fantasy taking place in the backdrop of Paris, France during the Exposition Universelle. We follow quite a cast of characters from a treasure hunter and hotel owner, to a scholar, to a cabaret dancer, to an inventor, and many more. Basically this group of misfits is trying to get Mr. Severin’s inheritance back, aka his rightful place as a Patriarch in the Order of Babel, but of course all hell breaks loose when the group is on a particularly difficult job.
I genuinely enjoyed this story! Roshani has a way of making sentences come to life. Her writing reminds me a little bit of Laini Taylor, more so with her other books, but this book had it’s moments. I enjoyed the way she built this fantastic world and magic system around the city of Paris and the World Fair (which I think is what the Exposition Universelle is haha). It was interesting to see how Forging (which is the magic system) weaved it’s way into the normal world, essentially making magic kind of main stream.
Roshani also has a way of writing character interactions that I really like! There’s a ton of snark and sass and it makes the relationships between this group very real. I honestly found myself thinking, “yeah I would say that to my best friend” or “I’ve said something like that before.” I’m a genuine sucker for found families in YA because I honestly believe that, while your blood will be there because they love you are related to you, it means all the more when people choose to stay in our lives without that blood tie. Anyway, Severin and Tristan’s relationship is my favorite because they genuinely found each other at the worst time in their lives and their brother-like relationship is very apparent. I ALSO am a big sucker for romantic tension and we do get that in this story from a number of characters.
Admittedly there were a bunch of slow parts where they were planning the heist or investigating what happened to the Babel ring and I did find myself skimming over those parts because I wanted to get back to the banter and the action. I can honestly see why some people found something lacking in this book — I however would recommend giving it another chance! It does get exciting and fun I promise. It had the right amount of action and mystery for me.
One piece of the story/plot that I found so so interesting was the secret society that the story centers around. I’ve always found secret societies interesting so to see this one kind of out in the open, at least in France ( I don’t know about the rest of the world in the book). They were throwing parties and inviting people willy nilly so I was very confused about the whole “secret” part, but I digress. It was still a wild ride, especially AT THE END OH MY GOSH. I honestly need the sequel now.
I can’t really think of a novel or series to compare this to as a whole, but it has the heist factor of Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo, the found family aspect of Percy Jackson and the Olympians and the romantic tension of….I can’t think of one with romantic tension quite like this, especially considering how the novel ended, haha. Honestly though, pick it up and give it a shot! I would love to hear your thoughts! (also this would be more of a 3.75 rating from me).