Ahoy there me mateys! I received this fantasy eARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. So here be me honest musings . . .
gilded cage (Vic James)
Title: gilded cage
Author: Vic James
Publication Date: TODAY!!! (Hardcover/E-Book)
This novel sounded awesome. It is a young adult dystopian with a magical twist. I thought this novel would float me boat. But I just could not finish it and had to abandon ship at 70%. Even though I did skip to the end and read the last chapters. Why ye ask? Well for a myriad of reasons (in no particular order):
- The revolution – it just got boring. This is what killed the book for me. I thought how the revolution began was rather uninspiring and the “dangerous” actions of the rebels felt lackluster. Spray painting walls. Hanging banners. I mean I know it was only the beginning of the rebellion but I didn’t care about it at all and didn’t even want to read about it anymore.
- Secondary characters – while I actually liked the main characters of Luke, Abi, and was even okay with Silyen, I had problems with many of the secondary characters being rather blah. Silyen’s brother Gavar and Jenner were very flat with seemingly little psychology into why they did what they did. Gavar was boorish and angry. Jenner was ineffectual and a hand-wringer. Add in sadistic guards, the hot love interest for Luke called Angel (Ugh!), and the rebels who happen to have super skills and I just felt underwhelmed.
- That being said, I did love the sibling relationships between Luke, Abi and Daisy. Also loved the street urchin Renie. She hit all me soft spots.
- The parents – well the good news is that parents are present in a young adult novel. Luke and Abi had loving wonderful parents. Okay there. But the bad thing is that after seemingly being involved even tangentially in the beginning, they just disappear from the plot. Silyen’s parents are present but seemingly to only have the father and mother be two-dimensional power hungry bad guys.
- Insta-love – Sigh. Jenner and Abi. Blech.
- Politics – the political maneuvering, which normally I love, was just not appealing. Somehow the problem seemed to be the set-up for how the world functioned. It just didn’t quite make sense.
- The magic – cool concepts but again didn’t seem to have a premise that made complete sense. I will will chalk it up to being a first in a trilogy. However I did want more of the magic that added to the usual dystopian flavor.
- I don’t normally read the endings of books I abandon but I guess the good news about the writing is while I didn’t want to have to “live” through it, I did want to know how this one tied up. That was just more proof that I am done with this series.
With so many books on the horizon, I just gave up. I want me reading to make time seem to disappear, not to accentuate every second passing. I am sad, but I couldn’t fight the tide.
So lastly . . .
Thank you Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine / Del Ray!
The author’s website has this to say about the novel:
NOT ALL ARE FREE – NOT ALL ARE EQUAL – NOT ALL WILL BE SAVED
A girl thirsts for love and knowledge…
ABI is a servant to England’s most powerful family, but her spirit is free. So when she falls for one of the noble-born sons, she faces a terrible choice. Uncovering the family’s secrets might win her liberty–but will her heart pay the price?
A boy dreams of revolution…
Abi’s brother LUKE is enslaved in a brutal factory town. Far from his family and cruelly oppressed, Luke makes friends whose ideals could cost him everything. Now Luke has discovered there may be a power even greater than magic: revolution.
And an aristocrat will remake the world with his dark gifts…
He is a shadow in the glittering world of the Equals, with mysterious powers no one else understands. But will he liberate–or destroy?
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