*WARNING! The below contains spoilers for The Prison Healer*
My reading slump is over thanks to this book! I can’t thank Kate at Hodderscape enough for approving my request on Netgalley, I’ve never read a galley so fast! I started The Gilded Cage late on Friday eve (my mistake) and I didn’t want to put it down to go to sleep. It’s been a long time since a book kept me up late so thank you Lynette Noni for writing such a captivating story!
The Gilded Cage kicks off not too long after the end of The Prison Healer (previously reviewed), Kiva has arrived at the palace with Tripp, Jaren and Nazeri and soon becomes torn between her duties and her heart as she gets closer to Jaren and his family. The change in setting was perfect, considering book one took place entirely in a prison, it was refreshing to change it up and this really gave the characters room to grow through the narrative of book two. Kiva has gone on such a journey but we knew her background from The Prison Healer, The Gilded Cage develops Kiva but also gives us background to the royal family and it introduces new players – some of them I really enjoyed getting to know (Caldon became a favourite for me in this book).
One of my favourite things about this series (so far) is the amount of content Noni can cover in one book! I’m seriously looking at her back catalogue. This series is fantasy but it includes themes that you would find in a contemporary novel. I love it so much. The world building and magic system is simplistic but effective, leaving focus for the actual storyline. It’s a hard balance to maintain and usually I would worry about ‘second book syndrome’ which many authors struggle with as they try to get the reader up to speed ready for the conclusion book but that doesn’t apply here!
It’s hard to review this one, I’ve thought about it all week as it is full of twists and turns, revelations and secrets – a joy to read. I loved seeing some of Kiva’s family after only having flashbacks in book one and it turned my stomach at the difficult position Kiva was put in by them. I dreaded getting to the end of this book but at the same time I could not stop. My heart rate went through the roof as I was reading, my emotions changed from one page to the next, it really was a rollercoaster! Kiva is such a fantastic character, I connect with her on so many levels thanks to Noni’s talented writing and, thanks to that ending I am absolutely desperate for book three! Every time I thought I had something figured out I was so far from the truth – definitely kept on my toes!
Basically – I loved The Gilded Cage and I need it to be October now so that everyone else can read it too! I also need it to be next March when book three will hopefully be out!