I came across Josie Jaffrey, an independent author, on Instagram. After contact with her, she offered me a copy of her latest Young Adult fantasy novel, The Gilded King. As I enjoy this genre, I agreed to read and review her work.
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 cannot accommodate. The Blue is her prison, not her castle, and she’d escape int 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.
From the first page of this novel I was drawn into Jaffrey’s world and swept away by her prose. The world she has created is refreshingly different and, even though it does not exist, her description of the Blue (and later the Red) captured my imagination and allowed me to suspend disbelief. I fell in love with the characters Julia and Lucas – and grew to distrust other Nobles living within the Blue. As the story moved to a climax, I held my breath and hoped for the survival of my favourites. The writer expertly takes you through a range of emotions, and does not allow you to put down her novel and forget her story.
I loved reading The Guilded King. the first in the Sovereign series. As the story came to a close, Jaffrey left me on tenterhooks, anxiously waiting for the next installment. Her writing and storytelling has converted me into a fan and I know that I am going read everything that she has previously written. If you love fantasy fiction, you should seek out a copy of this tale – you will not regret it.