Book Review – The Gilded King by Josie Jaffrey

The Gilded King

The Gilded King

Author: Josie Jaffrey
Series: Sovereign #1
Published: June, 2018 by Josie Jaffrey
Genre: Fantasy / Young Adult

Curious to know what this book is about and what I think of it?

The Gilded King

I received an e-book from the author.


The Gilded King

In the Blue, the world’s last city, all is not well.

Julia is stuck within its walls. She serves the nobility from a distance until she meets Lucas, a boy who believes in fairytales that Julia’s world can’t accommodate. The Blue is her prison, not her castle, and she’d escape into the trees if she didn’t know that contamination and death awaited humanity outside.

But not everyone in the Blue is human, and not everyone can be contained.

Beyond the city’s boundaries, in the wild forests of the Red, Cameron has precious little humanity left to lose. As he searches for a lost queen, he finds an enemy rising that he thought long dead. An enemy that the humans have forgotten how to fight.

One way or another, the walls of the Blue are coming down. The only question is what side you’ll be on when they do.

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Josie Jaffrey

Josie has always written stories, but it wasn’t until she started the first book in the Solis Invicti series in 2014 that she really became obsessed with writing. She loves to read, particularly where the escapism of the story is enhanced with an element of fantasy or science fiction. For Josie, writing is simply an extension of that journey, but she gets to decide what happens next.

You can find Josie on Twitter.

The Gilded King

A dystopian vampire novel

When Josie reached out to me and asked if I wanted to review The Gilded King, I immediately got very excited to start reading. The story sounds very interesting and I liked the cover.

The Gilded King starts with the introduction of Julia. Julia lives in the Blue, the world’s last city. The Blue is ruled by the Nobles and Julia is a servant. The servants mainly work in the kitchen. Julia’s best friend Claudia is becoming an attendant, a personal servant to one of the Nobles. After her first night with her Noble, Rufus, Claudia returns to the room she shares with Julia with bite-marks in her neck. The Nobles take blood from their attendants.

This is because the Nobles aren’t human. They are immortal and they need blood. Uncontaminated blood. And that’s the reason why the Blue is isolated from the rest of the world. The Blue is surrounded by the Red. Julia fantasises about escaping the Blue, but she is scared only contamination and death will await her in the Red. This is what the humans in the Blue are told and what they all believe.

But is this true? The second narrative in The Gilded King is the story of Cameron. Cameron is a Noble and he’s one of the Solis Invicti, the elite military of the Empress. Cameron goes on expeditions in the Red. He is looking for Emmy. Emmy went missing centuries ago and although the other Solis Invicti stopped looking for her, Cameron is still focussed on finding her and bringing her back to the Red.

Through Julia’s story you learn the way of the Blue. What is going on in the last city of the world and who are the Nobles? By reading Cameron’s story the life in the Red becomes clear. Is the Red really as dangerous as the people in the Blue are told? Is Emmy still alive?

The world building in this novel is amazing. I loved that the expeditions of Cameron take place in the Red and he goes to places that once were European countries. I want to read Josie’s other books, the Solis Invicti series, because I think the history of the Blue and the Red is explored in more depth in those novels.

My favorite character was Julia. She is strong, smart and curious. I also really enjoyed reading about Lucas, the Noble Julia will serve. He is different from the other Nobles and he talks about fairy tales.

I would highly recommend The Gilded King to readers who enjoy a dystopian novel, vampire stories and fantasy books.

4 out of 5 stars.


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