Melanie's Reviews > The Gilded Wolves

The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi
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really liked it
bookshelves: young-adult, fantasy, arc, read-in-2018, romance, buddy-reads, lgbtqiap, own-voices, subscription-box-owlcrate
Recommended to Melanie by: Chaima ✨ شيماء


ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

“Sometimes the only way to take down what had destroyed you was to disguise yourself as part of it.”

Most of you know that Roshani Chokshi is one of my favorite authors. I loved both The Star-Touched Queen & A Crown of Wishes with my whole heart and soul! So, I knew when she was writing a brand-new series, about a found family completing heists and solving puzzles, that I wouldn’t be able to resist once I got my hands on an ARC. And friends, this was such a treat to read.

This is a historical fantasy set in alternate 1889 Paris, France, and in this alternate world, children will manifest magical powers by the age of thirteen. And there are two different kinds of magic; the magic of mind and the magic of matter. There is also a very powerful secret society, that goes by the name of the Order of Babel, and it used to be made up of four houses, but two houses took over ten years ago. And by doing so, they made a very big mistake claiming the heir of one of those fallen houses as dead.

“Turning into ghosts is not what the dead deserve.”

Séverin - Biracial (Algerian & French). For sure the leader of the group, who wants nothing more than to keep his crew safe and out of harm’s way. But he is on a mission to reclaim his true inheritance that was stolen from him with lies ten years ago, because he gets an offer than he couldn’t possibly refuse.

Laila - Indian (ownvoices), dancer, who is dealing with a lot of grief and a lot of anxiety over her past. She has the magical (matter) forging ability to touch any object and read it to know everything about it. And she desperately needs Séverin’s plan to work.

Tristan - White, and Séverin considers him his little brother, because they moved around a lot together in foster care. Also, Tristan loves his pet tarantula, Goliath, more than anything, but he’s still my favorite little gardener/botanist.

Zofia - On the Autism spectrum, Jewish, Polish, has anxiety, and a lot of her actions (in my opinion, as someone who has OCD) feels like she may also fall on the OCD spectrum. She finds comfort in numbers, needs to have things in their rightful place, and is willing to do any and everything for her little sister that she was forced to leave behind. Zofia also has magical forging abilities of the mind.

Hypnos - Black, queer (probably pan, maybe bi, and maybe even non-binary), heir of a French aristocrat but know he is also a descendant of slavery. His story line is a little rough at first, but you soon realize that he considers Séverin a brother to him, and honestly? Hypnos ended up being my second favorite character. Also, he made me giggle so much that my tummy hurt.

Enrique - Biracial (Filipino (ownvoices) & Spanish), queer (he is either bisexual or pansexual, but I’m not sure my heart can take reading about a half Filipino, pan character because it is all I’ve ever wanted in literature!) But, this character meant a lot to me. I am not sure I’ve ever read specifically about a biracial Filipino dealing with cultural erasure on both sides of their heritage before. I mean, this book is literally people trying to erase cultures from history, and Enrique is literally a historian, but seeing people make comments about his looks and biraciality just really hit home for me on a really personal level. I completely realize that there comes an immense privilege with being white passing but reading this book and feeling how real and hurtful it is when people disregard you and erase you because you don’t fit in their stereotypical mold of what a half Asian person should look like, but they also never let you forget that you’re not fully white. Yet, also not feeling like you truly fit in because of your lighter or more westernized features, even if they comment about it in a way that they believe is positive and a compliment. And Enrique also has to deal with people thinking that Asian people are interchangeable and thinking that their cruel and ignorant words are acceptable to say. I loved all the characters in this book, but Enrique just felt like the character I’ve been searching for for a very long while and he just really encompassed so many things that I hold inside myself every day. His character just meant a lot to me, and I will cherish him forever and always in my heart.


(Breathtaking art(s) by Nicole Deal!)

And this ragtag group of misfits come together and create something so beautiful that I hardly have words to describe it. This book heavily talks about colonization. And even though the heart of this novel is about a found family who unconditionally loves one another, the soul of this novel is about cultural erasure and how important it is to keep the traditions and history from your culture, no matter who tries to make you believe that theirs is superior. And this book really puts an emphasis of the terrible acts people will commit while saying that it’s for or because of a higher power.

“But the greatest thief of all was the Order of Babel, for they stole more than just objects . . . they stole histories”

But all these characters feel like a tier above the rest of what YA has to offer. They feel so real, their pain feels so raw, and you just want to protect them all at all costs. Roshani really is a master word weaver and I can’t help falling in love with every story she puts into the world. She is also the master of romance, and I was swooning extra hard for two people in this. (Also, the set up to book two will probably be the death of me!) As for the other romantic relationship, Roshani is either going to completely slay me with the love triangle or give me everything I’ve ever wanted with a polyamorous relationship. Lord, hear my prayers.

Also, because I don’t think I mentioned this above, a good portion of this book is set at a hotel called L’Eden where the crew lives and develops new advancements to help them with their missions. I know I’ve already gushed pretty hard over this book, but I love books that are set in hotels and inns so much, and it was just such an unexpected treat. Then again, Roshani always writes the best settings and my heart fell completely in love with a poisonous greenhouse in this story, too.

Overall, I just really loved this one. I am sure many people will compare The gilded Wolves to a mix of Six of Crows & The Da Vinci Code upon release, and I think that’s valid, bu I think it has its own unique spin, too. The cast is diverse and lovable, the writing is lush and beautiful, the themes are important and heartfelt, and the story is captivating and unputdownable. If you like a story with secrets and mystery, filled artifacts and puzzle solving, with a little romance and funny banter, then I completely recommend picking up The Gilded Wolves upon release.

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The quotes above were taken from an ARC and are subject to change upon publication.

Content and trigger warnings for colonialism, cultural erasure, and racism (always challenged and in a negative light), blood depiction, mention of past suicide, loss of a loved one, bullying in the past, abandonment, anxiety attacks, mention of a stillbirth, and depictions of grief.

Buddy read with Kristi, Mel, Amy, Caidyn, Lily, & Alex! ❤
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Reading Progress

May 7, 2018 – Shelved
May 7, 2018 – Shelved as: to-read
May 7, 2018 – Shelved as: young-adult
May 7, 2018 – Shelved as: fantasy
September 26, 2018 – Shelved as: arc
September 26, 2018 – Shelved as: read-in-2018
September 26, 2018 – Shelved as: romance
December 15, 2018 – Started Reading
December 15, 2018 – Shelved as: buddy-reads
December 17, 2018 – Shelved as: lgbtqiap
December 17, 2018 – Shelved as: own-voices
December 18, 2018 – Finished Reading
June 13, 2019 – Shelved as: subscription-box-owlcrate

Comments Showing 1-49 of 49 (49 new)

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Chaima ✨ شيماء Mel I literally kept thinking about you throughout this entire book, so many things you've told me were reflected in these characters and I was clutching my heart the entire time I hope you love it, my dove 💕


J.A. Ironside My love for you is literally thd only thing stopping going on a rampage of envy 😂 I was turned down 😣 but I hope you love it xx💖


Melanie Em wrote: "Mel I literally kept thinking about you throughout this entire book, so many things you've told me were reflected in these characters and I was clutching my heart the entire time I hope you love it..."

hey, i love you more than all the stars in all the galaxies. (also, i'm so going to live update you over this one!) 🧡xx


Melanie J.A. wrote: "My love for you is literally thd only thing stopping going on a rampage of envy 😂 I was turned down 😣 but I hope you love it xx💖"

Awh, I'm sorry, babe. Let me know if things work out before I read it though, and I'll have my entire body crossed! 🧡xx


Lance This is honestly tied with King of Scars for my most anticipated 2019 release because Historical Fantasy? Band of Misfits? AND Filipino rep? I’m SHAKING.


message 6: by Candace (new) - added it

Candace Robinson I got approved too!!! So freaking excited!!!! ❤️❤️❤️


message 7: by *Ellie Reads* (new)

*Ellie Reads* I looked through all of your books they all look amazing. I am currently reading the book "The Book Thief" I think you might like it.


Booklover925 wait there's filipino rep in this! yay!!!


Renee Godding I’m so excited for this one! Looking forward to your review. Also; I’ve probably said it before but your photographs are so beautiful!!


Melanie Lance wrote: "This is honestly tied with King of Scars for my most anticipated 2019 release because Historical Fantasy? Band of Misfits? AND Filipino rep? I’m SHAKING."

You are going to LOVE Enrique more than words, Lance! Ahhh! I'm so excited to gush with you about this book, love! 💖xx


Melanie Candace wrote: "I got approved too!!! So freaking excited!!!! ❤️❤️❤️"

I hope you love it, sweetheart! I'm counting the days until our Wicked Saints buddy read! 💖xx


Melanie Ellie Reads wrote: "I looked through all of your books they all look amazing. I am currently reading the book "The Book Thief" I think you might like it."

Awh, thank you, Ellie! I really do need to pick that one up someday! Hopefully in 2019! 💖xx


Melanie Booklover925 wrote: "wait there's filipino rep in this! yay!!!"

Yesssss! Praise/bless! You are going to LOVE Enrique! 💖xx


Melanie Renee wrote: "I’m so excited for this one! Looking forward to your review. Also; I’ve probably said it before but your photographs are so beautiful!!"

Awh, Renee, you are too kind, sweetheart! Thank you so very much! I hope you're having happy reading and happy holidays! 💖xx


Miri ♪ Book Dragoness ♪ Oh my goodness, the elements you mentioned here make me so excited for this! Puzzles! Hotels! Thank you for the review 💖


Helena Summers Glad you enjoyed it too! I need the sequel now, especially after THAT ENDING


Natalie I really, really liked this too--the characters are marvelously real and the writing is so gorgeous and thoughtful. Can't wait for the sequel!


Melanie Miri ♪ Book Dragoness ♪ wrote: "Oh my goodness, the elements you mentioned here make me so excited for this! Puzzles! Hotels! Thank you for the review 💖"

Awh, thank YOU for these kind words, Miri! It was such a damn treat to read! I hope you enjoy, too! Happy reading and happy holidays! 💗xx


Melanie Helena wrote: "Glad you enjoyed it too! I need the sequel now, especially after THAT ENDING"

Heheh! Right? Ahhhh, I think a piece of me died with this book! I hope you're having happy reading and happy holidays, Helena love !💗xx


Melanie Natalie wrote: "I really, really liked this too--the characters are marvelously real and the writing is so gorgeous and thoughtful. Can't wait for the sequel!"

Awh, this comment made me smile so big, Natalie! Thank you, love! I can't wait to have the next book in my hands! I hope you're having happy reading and happy holidays, love! 💗xx


Helena Summers Melanie wrote: "Helena wrote: "Glad you enjoyed it too! I need the sequel now, especially after THAT ENDING"

Heheh! Right? Ahhhh, I think a piece of me died with this book! I hope you're having happy reading and ..."


aww, happy reading and holidays to you too, Melanie!


Emily G I’m so glad you loved it! I can’t wait to get my hands on it 💖


Melanie Emily wrote: "I’m so glad you loved it! I can’t wait to get my hands on it 💖"

Awh, thank you, Emily love! I hope you're having the happiest of reading and holidays! 💖xx


Felicia I figured you'd enjoy this one. Great review 💖


Melanie Felicia wrote: "I figured you'd enjoy this one. Great review 💖"

Awh, thank you so much, Felicia! I hope you're having happy reading and happy holidays! 💖xx


Tiffany v. holliman good review


Tiffany v. holliman i love your words in your books


Tiffany v. holliman some day you will be the word greatest author .


Tiffany v. holliman im excited for this review.


Tiffany v. holliman i kept thinking about how this review is going to be.


Catherine Hi Melanie! I have a question if you don't mind. I read The Star-Touched Queen and it really wasn't for me (as in one star rating)... I'm sorry, I know you love it... But The Gilded Wolves sounds great, so as someone who read and loved both books, do you think it's an author that's just not for me or it might just have been that one book that didn't work for me?


message 32: by Kristina (new) - added it

Kristina Awesome review! I'm hoping it's in this month's OwlCrate


message 33: by JW (new) - added it

JW Great review! I’m so excited for this one.


Kayla Jones This sounds AMAZING! I've heard so many great things about this book and I cannot wait to read it!! (Tuesday is almost here!! *squeals with excitement*)


Melanie Tiffany v. holliman wrote: "good review"

Thank you! 💗


Melanie Catherine wrote: "Hi Melanie! I have a question if you don't mind. I read The Star-Touched Queen and it really wasn't for me (as in one star rating)... I'm sorry, I know you love it... But The Gilded Wolves sounds g..."

Gosh, this is a hard one... but it is SO different than Star-Touched Queen, that I think it would be for sure worth a try for you! 💗xx


Melanie Kristina wrote: "Awesome review! I'm hoping it's in this month's OwlCrate"

*crosses everything* 💗xx


Melanie JW wrote: "Great review! I’m so excited for this one."

Thank you so much, love! Happy reading! 💗xx


Melanie Kayla wrote: "This sounds AMAZING! I've heard so many great things about this book and I cannot wait to read it!! (Tuesday is almost here!! *squeals with excitement*)"

I'm so excited for you to give it a try! Happy reading, Kayla love! 💗xx


Catherine Melanie wrote: "Catherine wrote: "Hi Melanie! I have a question if you don't mind. I read The Star-Touched Queen and it really wasn't for me (as in one star rating)... I'm sorry, I know you love it... But The Gild..."

Thank you for your answer lovely! Well, I'll try this one, it really sounds great after all :)


ℓуηη, ℓσкιѕℓутнєя¢ℓαω As always, beautiful review 😊 Your reviews always make me want to go out and snatch these books up! I can't wait to read this one. And that cover, too 😍 Anyway, I'm so glad you loved this & that there was a character you connected with so profoundly 💜 The message this story shares sounds so good & so important 🙏


Melanie ℓуηη, ℓσкιѕℓутнєя¢ℓαω wrote: "As always, beautiful review 😊 Your reviews always make me want to go out and snatch these books up! I can't wait to read this one. And that cover, too 😍 Anyway, I'm so glad you loved this & that th..."

Awh, thank you so much for these kind words, love! I am so blessed to call you my friend! And I hope you are currently having the happiest of reading! 💖xx


ℓуηη, ℓσкιѕℓутнєя¢ℓαω You're so very welcome! Friendship blessings go both ways <3 And thanks, I am enjoying my books!


message 44: by edith (new)

edith omg I need to read this so badly it has all the elements I love in a fantasy story !!!thank you for the wonderful review 😌🧡🧡


Melanie edith wrote: "omg I need to read this so badly it has all the elements I love in a fantasy story !!!thank you for the wonderful review 😌🧡🧡"

Awh, thank YOU for these kind words! I hope you love this one, sweetheart! Happy reading! 💖xx


message 46: by W505 (new)

W505 u guys dont catch up that often


message 47: by ARAS AZGIN (new)

ARAS AZGIN hvjtfvjnvvjnhgu


message 48: by ARAS AZGIN (new)

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Michelle Mckimmey I am still reading this book but the whole race thing with Enrique hit so close to home. My husband is Filipino/white . And his older siblings a are full Filipino and treat him like an out cast it’s really sad and breaks my heart and from what little I have read this will too....


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