“Only dull people have plans, Luke. ‘Go here. Do this. Hope other people do that.’ It never works. No, clever people embrace possibilities. Seize opportunities.”
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In an alternate modern-day Britain, magic users control everything: wealth, politics, power—and you. If you’re not one of the ultimate one-percenters—the magical elite—you owe them ten years of service. Do those years when you’re old, and you’ll never get through them. Do them young, and you’ll never get over them.
So on the one hand I really love this story. I love the horrendousness of the slavedays and the whole system of Skilled governance and how twisted it is. I really love the character relationships and how well-woven together everyone is.
I particularly enjoy reading Silyen Jardine, and in this book Jon Faiers, because I totally cannot get a good read on them. Silyen sometimes, especially in the beginning of the first book, gave off a little bit of a misunderstood bad boy vibe but by the end of Gilded Cage you know that he is definitely up to something. In this book, we start to see how brilliant he quite possibly is and he is certainly playing the long game but I still can’t figure out what his ultimate goal is…and I love it. He could end the series murdering literally everyone and I have no doubt that I will still love his storyline because of how well written it has been.
But with how much I love the story, I can’t deny that it has some flaws. Namely that it feels too rushed, whole scenes, plotlines, and occasionally even character development that are vital to the story progression skipped over.
In Abigail’s very first chapter, she becomes a fugitive when she decides to run away to attempt to liberate Luke after the events of the first book. I personally feel like this is a pretty momentous decision but it is all summarized in one short paragraph and then the actual escape gets another, slightly longer, paragraph and then she is practically on the doorstep of people that can help her.
Everything made a logical sense but I wish the time had been taken to show these events rather than just telling me that they happened in as brief a manner as possible.
There were other instances where I felt like the story didn’t go quite as smoothly as it could have if time were taken to let things build naturally rather than rushing and kind of forcing events to happen.
However, I am still addicted to this story even though it has these bumps along the way occasionally. The intricacy of the storylines and the characters’ relations to one another absolutely has me hooked and I am even more excited for book 3 than I was for this one.