“Make yourself a myth and live within it, so that you belong to no one but yourself.”Roshani Chokshi, The Gilded Wolves
No one believes in them. But soon no one will forget them.
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.
As a massive fan of Roshani Chokshi’s writing, when The Gilded Wolves came out I knew I’d be reading it above all other books on my TBR. As expected, I wasn’t disappointed.
When I first read the synopsis for the novel I was intrigued as it was like Chokshi was pulling a page from Leigh Bardugo and giving me a new band of misfits to love and root for.
Chokshi does an excellent job of doing just that. You have a group of people, all with their own quirks and specialties, that have banded together to aid Severin, the possible heir to a long-forgotten house, in being recognized as the true heir. From the start of the novel the reader is faced with Severin and one of his cohorts, Enrique, attempting to steal an artifact from an auction in order to gain information. From there, you’re introduced to Laila, Zofia, and Tristan, who all serve Severin in varying ways as well.
Laila the dancer that loves to bake, but can also read the histories of any objects she touches. Zofia, the mechanical engineering genius that is often alluded to as being on the autism spectrum. Tristan, the sweet baby that loves to garden and play with his spider, Goliath. And Enrique, the beautiful Hispanic-Phillipino historian who struggles to find acceptance in a society that deems multi-racial people as being less than.
With the many characters that all seem to be the main focus of the story, Chokshi writes from multiple perspectives, giving each character their own personality and back story. While I appreciated the multiple points of view, I can see why some people may not have loved the novel as the multiple perspectives tend to slow the pacing down. With a heist-based story line it could at times feel lengthy.
Essentially, Chokshi manages to create a novel that embodies what Leigh Bardugo has done with the Six of Crows series. She’s created a lovable, yet quirky cast of characters fighting for justice, while using a multiple character point of view to pull the reader through the story.
Overall, I gave The Gilded Wolves 5/5 stars. While, yes, the pacing could be a bit slow in the beginning, once the conflict was posed things really picked up and the story took off.
If your looking for something similar to Six of Crows, than you should certainly consider reading The Gilded Wolves.
Have you read The Gilded Wolves? What did you think? If not, would you read it?