The Gilded Wolves (B&N Exclusive Edition)

The Gilded Wolves (B&N Exclusive Edition)

by Roshani Chokshi

Hardcover(B&N Exclusive Edition)

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250237132
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication date: 01/15/2019
Edition description: B&N Exclusive Edition
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 270
Product dimensions: 6.40(w) x 9.40(h) x 2.40(d)
Age Range: 12 - 18 Years

About the Author

ROSHANI CHOKSHI is the New York Times bestselling author of The Star-Touched Queen, A Crown of Wishes, Aru Shah and the End of Time, and The Gilded Wolves.

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The Gilded Wolves (B&N Exclusive Edition) 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
Pens-and-Parchment 1 days ago
Rating: 4.5 stars Please consider getting a copy of this amazing book if you enjoy: - clever puzzles - art history - Six of Crows level banter and friendship - All things French - Fancy parties that may end in death - Moving floors and treasure hunting a la National Treasure - Giant rolling balls of fire (see Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom for reference) - Romance that definitely wants to make you pass out - Exploding walking sticks - Lovable boys - Lovable tarantulas - An ending that makes you want to sue the author for not having the sequel immediately Even if none of those speak to you, I can guarantee that there's something for everybody in this gorgeous historical fantasy that is sure to be one of my favorites of the year!
Sylira 8 hours ago
The Gilded Wolves is about a band of charming misfits, each with their own set of skills, working together to hunt down some ancient artifacts. The heists were fun to read about and full of intense scenes. I really loved the main cast of this book this, especially Séverin. He's so smart and intriguing. If you loved Six of Crows, you'll definitely enjoy this book! The one thing I did not like about this book was the ending. It was a little jarring and it felt like it came of nowhere. The twist wasn't done as well as well as it could have been. However, I do look forward to the next book and seeing how it will all develop. Also that cover? Is so pretty! I fell in love with it as soon as I saw it! It really suits the lush and gorgeous feel of the story.
Monnie777 18 hours ago
This is a fast-paced book. You get sucked right into the story and don't want to stop reading. I like how we switch people telling the story throughout the book. It is at times to hard to remember that all the people in this story are under the age of 20 because they act and talk well beyond their years. This story takes place in Paris near the turn of the century but with magic. I'm not really sure how to describe Forge but to call it magic. This is a fun adventure that had a lot intellectual writing and I'm really looking forward to the next book. *I received a free copy of this book via NetGalley and am voluntarily leaving a review.*
hufflepuffilicious_books 1 days ago
I received an ARC of the book from the publisher for an honest review Set in an alternate Paris in the late 1800s where magic reigns, this book follows six teenagers as they attempt to find various magical artifacts that will eventually help their leader, Severin, reclaim his birthright. The characters are diverse, come from many different backgrounds, and are well-developed. Although, they seem to act a little older than teenagers most of the time. They also really reminded me of the crew from Six of Crows. The story is well-written and the world building is phenomenal! I absolutely love the history and how it connects to the Tower of Babel. There are lots of action scenes that are exciting and will keep you wanting to read more. There were a few points of the book that dragged a bit, but the story was mostly face-paced and gripping. The ending leaves you with more questions to be answered, and some big ones at that! I am really looking forward to the sequel.
Sabrina207425 1 days ago
I absolutely loved The Gilded Wolves. The story is set against the backdrop of 1889 Paris and features the recently constructed Eiffel Tower and upcoming Exposition Universelle. This enchanting tale blends genres as a heist storyline is enriched by a world of extraordinary abilities where select individuals can “forge” matter (either liquids, solids, or gases) or the mind. Forging involves a scientific and magical manipulation or influence as real flowers are coaxed to life from strips of silk and portals are created from gilded leaves and liquid silver mirrors. The Gilded Wolves features an ensemble cast you will undoubtedly fall in love with. Each of the main characters has a well-developed backstory that is revealed as the point of views alternate by chapter. I do not always love having such a variety of POVs, but Roshani has given each of them such a distinct and charming voice that it is a pleasure to experience the scenarios from their varying viewpoints and ways of analyzing situations. This book balances devotion to others with ambition for the self, history with fantasy, and calming, decadent descriptions with action packed suspense. What an amazing beginning to a new trilogy. I can’t wait for the next installment.
Librarian_V_Reader 1 days ago
Librarian: If you're looking for a book to use for a teen book group or one to use for a battle of the books competition, this is a great choice. It has a little bit of something for everyone. Mystery, Adventure, Fantasy, Humor. There's plenty for all sorts of readers to enjoy, and enough actual meat to encourage all sorts of debate and discussion. Plus, it's by an author who is definitely on the rise, so it's likely to be in demand by many readers. I would definitely encourage teen librarians to snap this one right up. Reader: So much fun. This book is part fantasy, part historical fiction, part heist story, non-stop action. The story drew me right in and didn't slow down. I loved the ride, and I can't wait until the next one comes out. Because, man, that cliffhanger. I need to know what happens next.
QuirkyCat 1 days ago
Gilded Wolves is the first novel in a new series of the same name by Roshani Chokshi. Honestly, this is the first novel I’ve read by her and I wish I had found her sooner. Her writing style is exquisite and I never wanted the book to end! The novel is one part fantasy, one part steampunk, and one part heist. There are also a couple of romantic subplots, which is a bonus. The characters that carry the plot are incredibly well written. Each one of the expanded cast is unique, from the way they act and dress to what their passions and motivations are. Gilded Wolves takes place in Paris, 1889. But the Paris is this novel is very different from the one written about in history books. Here the elegance of the city is transcended thanks to the forging abilities of the people that live within it. Forcing is very similar to magic, though it is somewhat more specific and specialized. Each character we’ve seen with a forging ability has had an affinity for one particular material. Some forge metals, others paper, yet others the mind. One last thing worth commenting on before I begin my actual review: The cover. I honestly think this is one of my favorite covers so far. Admittedly I am partial to the deep green used, but it’s more than that. Even the cover speaks of elegance and fantasy all in one. It’s a perfect representation of the novel. I honestly think I loved almost every moment of Gilder Wolves; even the twists that were designed to make me cringe. It was all so beautifully written. The writing felt like it flowed from one scene to the next, slowly building up the tension. What really made this novel, in my opinion, were the characters. Originally we were introduced to five main characters. With time we’ve given the impression that a sixth might join the group (the jury is still out on that one). Six characters is a relatively large cast, especially before considering the number of secondary characters that are involved. But despite that, I never had a moment of trouble telling each one of them apart. Their way of thinking, speaking, and acting were all so clear and distinct. The best part of these characters was their varied backstories and reasons for being involved. I’ll confess that I think they did the best job with the true main character, Severin. Each of his chapters started with an italicized backstory focused on one element in his past. All those moments were tied together with a common theme. It was brilliant and I found myself looking forward to those moments. The rest of the characters fit their backstories well. Each one had a painful past, but they also had the drive to keep them going, and I respect that so much. Chokshi did a wonderful job of making these characters feel so painfully human at times. The writing style allowed us to do more than just see what drove each character. At a certain point, it became impossible to avoid seeing the faults in these characters. The human faults, that is. Their obsessions, their weaknesses, their fears. All those elements were slowly revealed with time, but in the end, they all came into play as well. It was brilliantly done. As for the plot…it was as intense as it was breathtaking and heartbreaking. The convoluted nature of their missions helped to obscure the true goals of those behind each scenario, leaving us at the edge of our seats. It became quickly evident that there was more going on here than meets the eye. I enjoyed watching the plot unravel, as it showed a unique l
Anonymous 1 days ago
This book is like Six of Crows, but even better. Every single character makes me fall in love with this book even more. There's Severin, Tristan, Laila, Zofia, Hypnos, Enrique. Each one has their own amazing personality and carefree ways and hilarious moments and serious faces. This book has history, mythology, suspense. The only problem was the little romance. As I'm a sucker for romance, that was a little issue for me. So that's the minus one star. But even with that little annoyance, I fell in love with this book. I happen to love this author and would read any of her books. But this one goes even beyond. The characters and setting and politics kept me up all night. I can't wait for the second book in this series!
WeezieL 1 days ago
Won paperback ARC from BookishFirst.com First of all, the cover is breathtaking! Do not buy the e-book, buy the gorgeous hardcover edition! It's one of the prettiest I've ever seen. This was my first Chokshi novel, I'm ashamed to say. I own her Star-Touched Queen duet but I have not read it yet. I will be putting it at the top of my TBR list now! Even those covers are beautiful! The magic in this book was very unique and interesting. Also a little confusing. Something about Babel Fragments and Forged items and mind vs matter affinities. It was explained at the very early stages of the book, which was good but then I kind of forgot how the magic worked by the time I awas halfway through. It was all just magic to me! I sped through this book once I started reading it! I liked all of the characters, even the bad ones. They were very well fleshed out and I think Zofia is my favorite. And the romance was swoon-worthy. This is definitely a 2019 must-read. Put the sequel in my grubby hands NOW! I cannot even wait to see the sequel's cover!!
Cleverdragonreading 1 days ago
Prepare yourselves because Roshani Chokshi does it again. This book has her signature, decadent, luscious writing that helps you imagine the most beautiful world. Paris is a glittering, dangerous city where our characters are all diverse with different drives and needs propelling them. I loved this little band of misfits and just want to give them all hugs and take care of them. There are four points of view in this book, each distinct and unexpected. The plot was very evenly paced, with multiple heists and exciting moments, along with moments of downtime with tea and cookies. I can't wait to see the puzzles in physical book format. This is one to get your hands on straight away before Severin comes to steal it from under your nose!
StephWard 1 days ago
4.5 Stars 'The Gilded Wolves' is the first novel in a fantastic new young adult historical fantasy series that will have readers begging for more. I absolutely loved this book and even though I expected to liked it - I didn't think I'd adore it this much. I can't really think of any negatives for me, except for the fact that it took me a little bit to get into the story. I'm a huge francophile, so once I was inside this exceptional alternate Paris I didn't want to come back out. The world building was amazing with the author leaving no detail undone. Everything was perfectly described and the book had tons of vivid imagery, which brought this magical world to life right in front of my eyes. We have a group of main characters for the novel: Severin, Tristan, Laila, Zofia, and Enrique. I loved getting to know each of them throughout the story. They each had unique personalities and traits to set them apart and I liked getting to know their backstories. They all played well off each other and worked great as a team and as individuals. One interesting thing was that the author chose to write the book from different character's viewpoints in alternating chapters. I thought this was a fantastic idea and fit well with the story line and feel of the novel. I liked getting to see the story through different eyes and figure out how each fit into the narrative. The plot wasn't anything hugely unique - but you can't really find anything that is anymore. The espionage, intrigue, and politics were all fascinating and kept you on your toes about what was going on in the story. The author put her own touches on the story and made it her own and something completely fresh and new. I'm so excited that this is the beginning to a series because I definitely need more time with these characters and inside their amazing world! Very highly recommended for fans of YA, historical, fantasy, and spy fiction.
ShesGoingBookCrazy 2 days ago
I received a copy of this book via BookishFirst in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! Well, I'm pretty disappointed that this turned out to be a DNF for me. I've been looking forward to this book for a while (since 2017 when I discovered the author was working on it). Unfortunately, while I thought the concept very interesting, there was a lot of forefront content that I just didn't want to read about. More important even than that point, comes my issue with the lack of setting. While atmosphere is certainly present, I had a very difficult time understanding where I actually was. This is a historical fiction set in France. While there were many, many finer details given, I could not grasp where I was supposed to be in this late 1800's locale. This era fascinates me, in almost any setting in the world, so I was very disappointed when I couldn't get a clear picture of where I was, where the characters were, and how the settings intermingled. I felt that there was a lot of filigree without a good base coat. The last main issue I had with this book was how the characters were portrayed. Naturally, we want to fall in love with characters in a book we decide to explore. But, I couldn't help to feel as though these characters, and my "love" for them, was being forced down my throat. There were a few times that I chuckled at their interactions, as there where characteristics I liked about each from this group and how they complimented one another. Each line of dialogue was formed in a way that felt like it was trying too hard, though. I'm sure many people will love these characters. For my tastes, it did not suite. Since this is a DNF read, I will not be assigning a star-review.
Rebecca_J_Allen 2 days ago
A heist, a unique magic system & a found family comprised of diverse characters! For me, it was a must read! Voicy writing and tight dialogue pulled me into the story of Séverin and his crew from page one. The characters are each larger than life, yet someone you’d love to hang out with whether over one of Laila’s mouth-watering confectioneries or while Tristan feeds his pet tarantula crickets. Some of the characters have magical powers and the magic system is both unique and quite complicated. I found myself at once amazed by their abilities and feeling a bit like they were too super-human, tilting the scales in their favor. Luckily, the bad guys are equally overpowered, keeping the tension high. The heist plot is of full of high-stakes action and surprising twists. A page-turner. This book will appeal to fans of both heists and fantasies. I requested an advanced reader copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Anonymous 2 days ago
Set in an alternative Gilded Age Paris where there are four houses in power, this book brings together five uniquely talented young people who need to work with each other to save civilization from collapse. At first, these unlikely allies are only looking for ancient artifacts to benefit their own agendas, but when they find out that the Fallen House is trying to find and awaken the Babel Fragments in order to destroy and remake civilization, they must decide to put their lives on the line to stop these evil people from committing unspeakable horrors. This first book in a new series will follow Severin, Laila, Zofia, Tristan, and Hypnos as they hunt for important artifacts and end up in danger along the way. I enjoyed this book overall, with some reservations. The writing was exquisitely descriptive, making me want to experience this alternative Paris myself. The cover is so beautiful as well and helped me envision parts of this world. The characters were well drawn and easy to sympathize with. I found myself laughing and crying several times as they went through difficult and dangerous circumstances together. The heist that occurred was so interesting that I couldn't stop reading. I didn't care for the profanity, didn't agree with some of the views presented, and at times the violence was a little too descriptive for me. Other than that, I will be looking forward to reading the next book, and I recommend this book to older teens and anyone who enjoys a good adventure story. I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher through the Bookish First program. A positive review was not required, and all opinions expressed are entirely my own.
LeighKramer 2 days ago
This is Six Of Crows meets Ocean’s Eleven meets The Librarians, with a dash of Indiana Jones. If that doesn’t reel you in, I don’t know what will. The Gilded Wolves is a historical fantasy set in 1899 Paris centered around a crew of friends. In this world, the Order of Babel rules. Some people are divinely gifted with Forging affinities, allowing them to change or enhance creation. But as you might suspect, not all is well in this world. There’s the Fallen House, which no one will talk about. There’s a House without an heir. And, oh, there’s the way the Order doesn’t always act in everyone’s best interests. Enter Séverin, the denied heir of House Vanth, who delights in reclaiming the items sold off from his House and tracking down Order items for those who will pay him. He’s assisted by Zofia, Laila, Tristan, and Enrique, each of whom bring a great deal to the table. Séverin believes the Order falsified his inheritance test because he’s biracial (Algerian-French) and there was already a mixed race patriarch (Hypnos of House Nyx, who had a Black mother and French father.) Séverin wants nothing more for House Vanth to be restored. This leads to a treasure hunt for items which will allow him to blackmail the Order but his quest for a compass leads him in an entirely different direction. The rest of the novel is part treasure hunt, part heist and I could not get enough of it. I don’t want to say much more about the plot but suffice it to say, you’re going to want to talk about it. The real star is the group of friends. All of the details and interactions show how well they know each other and care for one another. The different dynamics, such as who was closer to who, was fascinating to watch, as well as see what love stories might emerge, if any. (I was especially here for the unrequited but maybe requited longing.) I also loved how badly Hypnos wanted to be part of their group and how this aspect of the plot developed. I would be remiss if I didn’t point out how seamlessly diverse the cast of characters is. Laila is Indian and bakes by day and dances as L’Enigme by night. Enrique is Spanish-Filipino and likely bisexual—I fully geeked out on his character because he’s a historian and symbolist and I can’t get enough of symbolism. Zofia is a neurodiverse, Polish, and Jewish math whiz. Tristan is white and has anxiety and has somewhat of a codependent relationship with his tarantula Goliath but can do amazing things with plants. Laila and Zofia were especially strong female characters, which was refreshing to see when it comes to a heist plot. While Séverin’s obsession with getting his House restored is what gets them into a pickle, each person has a vested interest in the plan succeeding. They test themselves and each other and this made for some wonderful character development. I cared so deeply about each one of them. There’s such a great sense of humor throughout, no matter the stakes. This was a suspenseful read, to be sure, but more than anything else it was fun. The ending makes for an incredible set up for book two and I cannot wait to see where Chokshi takes us next. CW: racism, colonialism, death of a loved one, grief, references to past bullying, past child abuse (neglect, mental, emotional), anxiety attacks Disclosure: I received an advanced copy from BookishFirst in exchange for an honest review.
marongm8 2 days ago
Such an enticing novel with a romantic mystery twist. Every chapter was engaging in a time period of 1889 where gangster crime is at its beginning. Some parts however were somewhat predictable but it made up for incorporating unexpected turns and surprises to keep the story more exciting. This story was also the 1889 Paris version of Indiana Jones where three people come together to find an ancient artifact with all at stake. The story is so enticing and adventurous that it was hard to stop reading. That is why we give this book 5 stars.
Anonymous 2 days ago
Roshani Chokshi has delivered another stunner with The Gilded Wolves. I love each and every one of our main characters and would die for them. They each have their own distinct personality and voice and it's so well done. The plot is also absolutely phenomenal with twists and turns up to the last page (waiting for book two is killing me right now). And then the writing. Roshani's writing is always phenomenal and this one was no exception. The way she describes things is so lush and well done, and with this setting, which also was very interesting, she captured the luxury perfectly. There also were some romances brewing that were oh so interesting and compelling. I'm eager to see how they are resolved when book 2 comes out.
BookFreakOut 2 days ago
I wanted to like this book a lot more than I did; ultimately I'd say if you're interested in reading it, then go for it, but it's not one that I'll be actively recommending to my friends/family. Jokingly described by the author as "National Treasure but with hot people," it certainly delivers in that regard, and I enjoyed the puzzle/clue aspects that were based in history and mathematics. However, the overall pacing felt slow, and by the end all the high-action points had muddled together in my mind to the point where I had forgotten about some of them. It was also difficult to keep track of what was happening overall during complicated action sequences. The "gang of misfits" cast will inevitably draw comparisons to Six of Crows, especially since there is a heist element to The Gilded Wolves. While the Wolves cast is diverse and fairly interesting, it fails to reach the heights achieved in Six of Crows - I didn't develop strong emotions of any kind toward any of the characters, and I would've liked to see more into the mindset of Séverin and Laila, who are positioned as the leading POVs. Enrique, Zofia, and Hypnos were most interesting to me, while Tristan seemed to exist solely to aid in Séverin's characterization. The Forging magic was initially intriguing, with details about how users had to understand the physical composition of the item they're trying to influence (like Tristan having an affinity for the water within plants). However, it quickly devolved into a catch-all for imbuing any and every item with magical properties. The twist ending (literally, last sentence) failed to excite me, though there are some interesting setups for book 2, including a faux romance and the chance to move the story out of France.
pooled_ink 2 days ago
pooled ink Reviews: A little wicked, a little bold, a little enchanted, and a whole lot of thrilling mysterious panache... Roshani Chokshi has done it again! Once more she graces the page with an alluring balance of evocative prose and characters you'll want to either love or throttle or perhaps even both. Gilded darkness, Parisian mystique, secret history, and a thrilling current of witty banter all ties this dangerous chase together into a must-read for readers everywhere.
sincerelykarenjo 2 days ago
Roshani Chokshi has created another masterpiece that is absolutely dazzling, breathtakingly gorgeous, and deliciously thrilling. Filled with mystery, pulse-pounding suspense, exciting adventure, playful bantering, and lovable characters, The Gilded Wolves was an utterly fun and amazingly fantastic read. I loved The Star-Touched Queen and Chokshi’s writing style is simply beautiful so I was beyond excited when I won an ARC of The Gilded Wolves from Bookish First. I was really looking forward to having an epic adventure and this book did not disappoint. The pacing was good and I never felt bored. Even if some parts were kind of weird and a little bit confusing, I was still completely enthralled by everything! From the wildly captivating writing, mesmerizing world-building, action-packed plot, and rambunctious characters, this book undoubtedly charmed me. Chokshi created such a fascinatingly gorgeous world I never want to leave. It’s full of wonder, mystery, danger and magic and I just couldn’t get enough. If the world-building dazzled me, the characters undeniably captured my heart. I thought they were incredibly charming and absolutely intriguing. Getting to know each of them was truly a wonderful and enjoyable experience. I don’t want to ruin the fun for you, but these characters -- Séverin, Enrique, Laila, Zofia, Tristan and Hypnos – they each had their own quirks and were so easy to relate to. They’re funny, unique, talented and adorable. Be prepared for this amazingly multifaceted, diverse, and wonderfully entertaining cast of characters that I’m sure you’ll fall head over heels in love with just as I did. I already miss them and cannot wait to see where they’ll be in Book 2. The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi is a beautifully crafted tale that will sweep you up in an unforgettable adventure full of mystery, action, humor, and suspense. I enjoyed so much of this book and so darn in love with Chokshi’s delightfully enchanting storytelling. I loved the creative world-building, the background stories, the multiple POVs, the fun bantering, the fight scenes, the friendships, and the romance. I really can’t wait to continue this adventure and to see where the story will lead to next. I received an advance reader copy of this book from Bookish First in exchange for a fair and honest review. All thought, feelings, and opinions are my own.
Anonymous 2 days ago
The Gilded Wolves is about a group and friends and treasure hunters in 1889 Paris who have found a family with each other. Their reckless leader Séverin gets an opportunity to get back what was once stolen from him and he jumps at the chance. He takes his friends along for the ride even though they all are not as eager as him. What follows is an adventure across Paris where they find a few friends ad lots of enemies along the way. I was excited to read this book, but I didn't love it like I thought I would. I always enjoy books with a close group of friends so I did enjoy that aspect and Séverin was my favorite character hands down! While there was a lot of action in the book at times I felt like the story was dragging. Sometimes I also wished there were less heists and more interaction between some of the characters. This was fairly enjoyable and I'm interested to see where the story goes next.
Katizee 2 days ago
A gorgeous gem of a book! I received an ARC from BookishFirst, so thank you to them and the publisher. All opinions are my own. I was very pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed this book. The writing is lush and engaging, the setting is luxurious and enchanting, the characters are vivid and extremely endearing. I found myself lost in the story and did not want to put it down, but at the same time I wanted to savor each scene and be transported to this gilded age of whimsy and glamour. I loved the story with the heist element, there’s tons of action and so much angst it hurt, the sense of humor had me chuckling to myself quite a few times, and the "found family" aspect of the characters just got me in the feels. I cannot recommend this more, anyone can find something to enjoy here, so do yourself a tremendous favor and read this wonderful book.
tpolen 2 days ago
My expectations for this book were high, and it more than surpassed them. If I could rate it more than 5 stars, I gladly would. With such unique, magical world-building, and a closely bonded clan of charming characters planning a dangerous heist, The Gilded Wolves has the feel of Six of Crows. I've also seen this book compared to Indiana Jones and National Treasure, and with clues, puzzles, and historical elements, I can see why. The incredibly well-developed characters made this novel for me. They're a family of their own choosing, and along with that comes humorous dynamics - I laughed with them, but also felt their pain. Each of the six has their own talents and skill set and bring something to the table. And such wonderful inclusion! Bisexual, gay, autistic, with different cultures and backgrounds. At over 400 pages, this is a chunk of a read, but I didn't want it to end. An intricate plot, beautiful writing with so many quotable lines, charismatic characters, and masterful world-building - I highly recommend The Gilded Wolves to fantasy, history, and adventure fans. Easily one of my best reads this year, and the next book can't come soon enough. Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the digital ARC.
onemused 2 days ago
"The Gilded Wolves" is a fantastic YA fantasy. Although given a year in the 1800s and a historical setting, the world is completely different and did not feel like a historical fiction to me (I'm not always a historical fiction fan so this was preferred). I would definitely label this as a fantasy vs. historical in terms of genre. Anyway, I absolutely loved it. We follow a group of young people who are led by Severin, the heir of House Vanth. Although he is the financial heir, he has been unable to claim his birthright (embodied by the House ring)- he believes that the results were falsified because of the color of his skin. This birthright would have placed him as one of the leading houses of the Order of Babel. "Half of winning, my dear wallet, is simply looking victorious." The Order of Babel safeguards the location of the Babel Fragments, which were scattered throughout the world after the failure of the Tower of Babel. These led to certain individuals developing powers in a certain skill, which is called Forging. Severin has assembled such a group of individuals with these gifts who are bound by their contracts/promises (in a magical type of way) and by the fact that they have become a family. They work together to steal specific artifacts which they believe will further their causes- to seek hidden treasures. "Is it our shame that we're hiding or our delusions that we can hide at all?" We follow the book from various points-of-view. Although Severin is probably the main figure, we also follow Laila quite a bit. She is known as L'Enigme, who performs for crowds and is rumored to have slept with many wealthy and influential people. She came from India in search of a specific book and has a long scar down her back which represents her biggest secrets. There are also Enrique and Zofia, who work on Forging specific items with a host of skills. Enrique is personable and has a big personality, while Zofia must decode human interactions and act according to what she has learned (I suspect she is on the autistic spectrum). Zofia is mathematical and loves to use explosives/fire. The last of the group is Tristan who adores his spiders and spends a lot of time in his greenhouses, forging. He grew up with Severin and they are essentially brothers (though not through blood). We get glimpses of the horrors of their upbringing with their foster fathers labeled according to which of the 7 deadly sins they most embodied. "I think the greatest power is belief, for what is a god without it?" The group is soon joined by Hypnos, the young heir of House Nyx and also a POC, who strikes a bargain to restore Severin's birthright/ring in exchange for his group's help to locate and obtain an artifact. Hypnos was delightful with many jokes and much hopefulness (for instance when he asks Zofia if they are/can be friends, she asks what it would entail and he replies "Well, on Wednesdays, we sacrifice a cat to Satan."). I absolutely loved his addition to this lovely group of people. As they begin this quest, they find they have stumbled upon something bigger and more dangerous than they could have imagined. And what a journey it is- magic, villains, and traps at every turn! "Lust is safer than love, but both can ruin you." This book absolutely captured me from the beginning, and I loved every second of it. The characters were amazing and so diverse, with different ethnicities and sexual orientations. They are all completely endeared to my heart, as Choks
CaptainsQuarters 2 days ago
Ahoy there me mateys!  I received this young adult fantasy eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.  So here be me honest musings . . . I really wanted to like this young adult fantasy novel.  But this one just did not float me boat.  Instead I had to abandon ship and watch it sink to the watery depths never to be seen again.  I picked this one because of the following reasons: - set in 1889 Paris; - a heist story (Arrr!) - has a diverse cast - has magic I read about 100 pages of these before calling it quits for the following reasons: - The book did not feel like it was set in 1889 Paris.  The world-building really felt like it could be in any time or place.  In addition I couldn't really figure out what was really going on in the beginning.  It was just confusing.  The politics, geography, and how the magic society functioned seemed vague. - The first mini heist was lackluster and confusing.  Ye are thrown into the very last part of the job.  There is an artifact to be stolen and no idea of how the thieves even located it.  How the thieves work around the magic guards of the artifact room is so poorly written that I read it three times and still didn't understand exactly how they managed to escape the traps. - I individually liked the core group of characters - particularly Zofia.  But their banter felt too silly and childish for their ages.  There was also some cheesy romantic angst going on.  There was definitely a diverse group.  But the dialogue was mostly painful and the dynamics between the characters were odd. - The magic was just plain incomprehensible.  There were some cool concepts.  I liked how all things could be marked by the owners with a ring.  I liked how one character could read an item's past.  I liked the idea of the mirrors.  I have no idea how or why the babel items work the way they do or even where they came from.  Magic rules were very unclear and seemed to change on a whim. After that many pages, I should have been hanging on every word.  Instead I was befuddled and tired of trying to make sense of what I was readin'.  I felt like this is a bad version of six of crows or the lies of locke lamora. Some of me crew members are highly enjoying this one but the little bit that I read was less than stellar.  Check it out and see if ye be on the side of yer Captain or with the crew. So lastly . . . Thank you St. Martin's Press!