Book Reviews: The Gilded Wolves & The Silvered Serpents by Roshani Chokshi

Title: The Gilded Wolves

Author: Roshani Chokshi

Publishing date:  January 15th 2019

Publisher: Wednesday Books

Genre: YA Fantasy

Pages: 388

It’s 1889. The city is on the cusp of industry and power, and the Exposition Universelle has breathed new life into the streets and dredged up ancient secrets. Here, no one keeps tabs on dark truths better than treasure-hunter and wealthy hotelier Séverin Montagnet-Alarie. When the elite, ever-powerful Order of Babel coerces him to help them on a mission, Séverin is offered a treasure that he never imagined: his true inheritance.

To hunt down the ancient artifact the Order seeks, Séverin calls upon a band of unlikely experts: An engineer with a debt to pay. A historian banished from his home. A dancer with a sinister past. And a brother in arms if not blood.

Together, they will join Séverin as he explores the dark, glittering heart of Paris. What they find might change the course of history–but only if they can stay alive.

Goodread | Amazon

The Gilded Wolves is the story of a ragtag group, each with individual motivations that make them work together to steal magical artifacts from a powerful organization. The strongest element of this book is the characters, they are all very different from each other, they are interesting and they are easy to root for. The relationships between them are complex and captivating and they have a beautiful found family. Also, there are some amazing ships in this book, the romances are subtle, angsty and full of tension.

While I wasn’t really invested in the plot, I think the way the author used the plot to talk about the looting of global south countries by colonial European countries during this time period was very well done. The way this book addresses colonialism, colorism, and slavery, without it taking over the book, adds depth to the story. Also, while I didn’t really care about the plot, I liked the ending, it was sad and angsty and twists kept coming.

One of the main issues with this book is that the magic system isn’t explained, not even the abilities of some of the main characters, which are used often throughout the book to get them out of trouble. A part of this magic system is a mix between science and magic that helps them build artifacts and, since the magic isn’t explained, there’s no way to know how the artifact that they use in the heists are built or how they work, so a lot of times, it feels like these cool inventions came out of nowhere to solve all the problems.

Another issue with the book is that it is a bit confusing, the pacing is so breakneck that sometimes it’s hard to understand all the discoverings that the characters make and how they are making them. Sometimes it’s even hard to understand what is happening because everything happens so fast. Also, the breakneck pace means the characters are always in the middle of a heist, and since I wasn’t that invested in the plot, all I wanted was more time with the characters to get to know them better.

Overall, The Gilded Wolves was a fun, fast-paced story with amazing and complex characters and a very light magic system.

3,7 stars

Title: The Silvered Serpents

Author: Roshani Chokshi

Publishing date: September 22nd 2020

Publisher: Wednesday Books

Genre: YA Fantasy

Pages: 416

Séverin and his team members might have successfully thwarted the Fallen House, but victory came at a terrible cost — one that still haunts all of them. Desperate to make amends, Séverin pursues a dangerous lead to find a long lost artifact rumored to grant its possessor the power of God.

Their hunt lures them far from Paris, and into the icy heart of Russia where crystalline ice animals stalk forgotten mansions, broken goddesses carry deadly secrets, and a string of unsolved murders makes the crew question whether an ancient myth is a myth after all.

As hidden secrets come to the light and the ghosts of the past catch up to them, the crew will discover new dimensions of themselves. But what they find out may lead them down paths they never imagined.

Goodreads | Amazon

I liked this book a lot more than The Gilded Wolves. I think partly it is because I went into this with the right expectations, so I knew there wasn’t going to be a lot of explanations about how the world and the magic system worked. It’s still a pretty cool world and magic system even things are not really explained in detail.

The main characters are still amazing and the relationship between them got so angsty and so much more complex in this book, because all the characters are trying to deal with their grief over what happened in The Gilded Wolves and some are not handling it well, which is messing with all the relationships. Also, there’s so much longing in this book, everyone is longing for someone else and not only in a romantic sense, and it was very painful to read at times. Zofia and Eduardo are my favorite characters and their relationship is the best, I can’t wait to see where it goes in the next book.

This is another heist book and it isn’t outstanding but it’s interesting enough. Mostly, I was invested in everything that was happening because I didn’t want anything bad to happen to the characters, and this book did such a good job of keeping me at the edge of my seat for the last chunk because so much happens. While there were some predictable aspects, the plot was overall more engaging than the plot in The Gilded Wolves, I think partly because there weren’t as many things happening, so it was easier to follow and be engaged in the story. There’s a change of setting and the characters end up in a strange and magical place and it was interesting seeing them explore it, which is something I really appreciated about the story.

Overall, The Silvered Serpents was an angsty story full of complex relationships, longing and grief, but also a fun adventure with twists and turns that will keep you at the edge of your sit.

4 stars

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Have you read these books? What historical fantasy books do you recommend?

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12 thoughts on “Book Reviews: The Gilded Wolves & The Silvered Serpents by Roshani Chokshi

  1. I loved The Gilded Ones, but for some reason I still have not resd The Silvered Serpents, now I think I’m just going to wait close to the release date of book three haha!
    Great review!


    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think I need to reread The Gilded Wolves. I just was not invested at all the first time around, like I wasn’t even actually reading it, just skimming the pages. I think I was in slump territory when I was reading it, so I am willing to give it another go.

    Liked by 1 person

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