The Gilded Wolves (The Gilded Wolves: Book 1) by Roshani Chokshi

The Gilded Wolves (The Gilded Wolves, #1)

5 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, Wednesday Books

Date of publication: January 19th, 2019

Genre: Science Fiction, Fantasy, Young Adult

Where you can find The Gilded Wolves: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Goodreads synopsis:

Set in a darkly glamorous world, The Gilded Wolves is full of mystery, decadence, and dangerous but thrilling adventure.

Paris, 1889: The world is on the cusp of industry and power, and the Exposition Universelle has breathed new life into the streets and dredged up ancient secrets. In this city, no one keeps tabs on secrets better than treasure-hunter and wealthy hotelier, Séverin Montagnet-Alarie. But when the all-powerful society, the Order of Babel, seeks him out for help, Séverin is offered a treasure that he never imagined: his true inheritance.

To find the ancient artifact the Order seeks, Séverin will need help from a band of experts: An engineer with a debt to pay. A historian who can’t yet go home. A dancer with a sinister past. And a brother in all but blood, who might care too much.

Together, they’ll have to use their wits and knowledge to hunt the artifact through the dark and glittering heart of Paris. What they find might change the world, but only if they can stay alive.

My review:

Severin is a wealthy hotelier in 1889 Paris. He seems to have it all but looks can be deceiving. Severin is a treasure hunter with an agenda. He wants his House reinstated back into the mysterious Order of Babel. He wants to be acknowledged as the blood heir to the house. The only way for that to happen is to hunt down and retrieve a ring stolen from the Matriarch of one of the two houses that are left. He also needs to prevent an ancient artifact from coming to life and destroying the world. It is not going to be easy. Severin needs the help of his team. Can Severin and his team hunt down the ring and prevent the artifact from coming to life? Or will they be too late?

The Gilded Wolves showed up on my radar a few months back. When I read the blurb, I had a “meh” reaction and almost didn’t accept the review request from the publisher. At the time, my reading/review schedule was busy. Even though the book was due to be published in January, I didn’t think I was going to be able to read it. Then I reread the blurb and my “meh” reaction turned into a “Hmmm“. Since I had a few books scheduled for review in January, I decided to accept the review request. Let me tell you, I am so glad that I did. This has to be one of the best books I have read this year.

This was a beautifully written book. The author took her time building up the characters backstories while progressing with the main storylines. Any other book would have me sitting here and complaining about it. But not here. It worked. The author separated the backstories by having them in italics. What I liked also is that there was no confusion when that happened either. That alone made this book an enjoyable read for me.

I liked that the main characters were fleshed out and they were diverse. Enrique was from the Philippines and was mixed race. He was Filipino/Spanish. Laila was from India. Zofia was Jewish and from Poland. Hypnos was White and Black. Severin was Middle Eastern and White.  I enjoyed reading how each culture was different and how everyone meshed together.

I also liked how the author chose to bring up sexuality in the book. The century that the book is set in wasn’t known for being tolerant of homosexuality or bisexuality. So to have Enrique be bisexual was awesome. His attraction to both Hypnos and Zofia was written beautifully. He wasn’t ashamed at being attracted to both men and women. Which was fantastic. 

I didn’t like Severin when he was first introduced in the book. He came across as cocky and careless. As the book went on, I did start to like him. All he wanted was to bring his House back and to be its Patriarch. Which is why I was surprised when he did what he did at the end of the book.

I liked Laila. She was the heart and soul of the group. The relationships that she forged with everyone was prevalent throughout the book. I was surprised and intrigued by her backstory. I am wondering what is going to happen to her when she turns 19. Her hidden ability was amazing.

Zofia was odd but I liked her. She was brilliant. Her nickname of “the phoenix” fit her. I wanted to cry when she was remembering her years at the university. The way she was treated by both her classmates and teachers was horrible. I don’t blame her for doing what she did (even though it was by accident).

Enrique was one of my favorite characters in the book. For the reasons, I stated above. Also because he told it like it was to Severin. He was also brilliant. The history he knew blew me away.

Tristan touched my heart. From the beginning of the book, I could tell there was something wrong. The abuse that he suffered by Wrath broke him. He reminded me of a small child at points in the book. Because of that, I thought he job as a poisoner was odd. But he was brilliant. He was also obsessed with spiders. He devotion to Goliath was touching. Creepy, but touching.

The plotline with Severin and his quest to get his House back was fascinating. I liked that Egyptian mythology was used in the book. At times, the book reminded me of an Indiana Jones movie. I love it when a plotline keeps me guessing and this one definitely did.

The secondary plotlines enriched the main plotline. They added more depth to the book that was needed.

The end of The Gilded Wolves surprised me. It also broke my heart. The author did a fantastic job at wrapping up some storylines and leaving other ones wide open. The cliffhanger at the end of the book did its job. I am going to have to read book 2 when it comes out. 

I gave The Gilded Wolves a 5-star rating. This is a beautifully written book. It has a diverse cast of characters and plotlines that kept me reading. 

I would give The Gilded Wolves an Older Teen rating. There is no sex (there is mention of sex and several kissing scenes). There is no language. There is violence. There are trigger warnings. They would be child abuse. I would recommend that no one under the age of 16 read this book.

I would reread The Gilded Wolves. I would also recommend it to family and friends.

I would like to thank St. Martin’s Press, Wednesday Books, and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review The Gilded Wolves.

All opinions stated in this review of The Gilded Wolves are mine.

**I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**

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