The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi
Firstly, I want to say that I had the pleasure of meeting Roshani Chokshi in Atlanta and if you ever get the opportunity to listen to her speak, you totally should do it because she is hilarious and really nice! I went in not having read any of her books but came out extremely excited to read all of them! (Also, she has a lot of random fun facts– like she talked about how people thought tomatoes were poison and also ranted about how ice was invented which was pretty great!)
ANYWAY, now to the review hehe:
I usually don’t read historical fiction novels (though I always want to but am never in the right mindset for it) so this was definitely a fun surprise! Not only is it set in 1889 France, but there’s also a whole other world of magic and a secret Order that really set apart the world! On top of that, the thing that really caught my attention was that this is a HEIST NOVEL. Those are my jam!
I went in knowing that since I just read Crooked Kingdom recently, I would unintentionally try and compare, and though every heist novel has its similarities, Chokshi did a great job setting her world apart!
While the world building was well done, I did find myself just a little confused in the beginning with all of the magic mixed with technology. I didn’t quite understand Forging, but once the story set in, it all started to make a bit more sense.
While I found myself getting lost in the riddles and the actual heist, I thoroughly enjoyed the characters and the wit and banter! The plot itself sort of went over my head, and I discussed this with some other people and I know I’m not the only one that felt confused at times. There would be parts that I’d have an AHA! moment, but then something else would happen and I’d be thrown into the dark again.
While I didn’t mind that as much since it adds to the mystery and mayhem, I can see why it could be a bit of a put-down.
HOWEVER, as I said before, the characters really made the story enjoyable! We get to follow an amazing set of unique and fun characters that each have their own strengths, weaknesses, and oh-so-wonderful secrets! I loved diving in to the backstories and personalities of each of the characters! And what made me really fall in love with the books was how FUN it was seeing the characters interact!
There’s Severin (the leader), Laila (the mysterious baker with a well known alter ego), Enrique (the “know-it-all” historian who honestly made every dangerous situation HILARIOUS), Zofia (the mathematician and inventor who doesn’t completely understand sarcasm–or flirting), and Tristan (the most adorable person ever okay?! fight me… and his pet tarantula Goliath).
BUT WAIT– along with this team, they also have to join forces with Hypnos, the most dramatic, hilarious, most relatable character ever to be honest. I don’t want to ruin all the fun, but there were times where he just made me laugh out loud. Actually, there were times where all of them made me laugh out loud!
If y’all have been following me for a while, you all know I immediately fall in love with character based stories and that’s why this story is worth the read. It made me laugh, made me cry, and was overall really entertaining despite the little bit of confusing plot points (clearly, I need to do more riddles and exercise my mind! Or maybe Zofia needs to teach me math and Enrique needs to teach me history and Tristan needs to teach me to love gross spiders).
Anyway, I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys a good heist, some magic, unique and diverse characters, some really hilarious banter and storytellings, secrets and inner turmoil mwahaha!
This is perfect for fans of flawed characters that somehow make a really great team, falling in love with every single character, CHARACTERS OKAY? I JUST LOVE THEM ALL!