I was offered a beta reading of Gilded Fae by Erica Reeder and I loved it. I reached out to the author the afternoon that I finished reading and asked Ms. Reader when the next book might be available; I was completely surprised when she said it already is. This version of Gilded Fae that I read, was a rewrite. Very cool, this meant there was no need for me to wait to see what would happen next in the action, since Ms. Reeder ended the book on a large cliffhanger!
It’s hard for me to decide which aspect of this novel I like the best. Without a doubt, I found the character development and the pace to be the strongest assets.
There is some predictability to the story. That is actually a good thing as it gives the reader something solid to use as a foundation to build all the new ideas on. So when we meet the handsome Sven, it’s not at all surprising to learn his heritage. That does nothing to detract from his character and in fact adds to it as we get to the climax of the story. In juxtaposition to the expected character traits of Sven, Cy is full of surprises. I love that her character is a female fae, bounty hunter. Immediately, we assume that she is strong, independent, and not afraid to get dirty. She certainly lives up to all of these expectations and then some as we keep learning (sometimes along with her) more about the depths of her character. Her choices are often extreme and yet completely justifiable. The extremes that she experiences are the crazy that we hang upon the slight predictability of the rest of the story, thus weaving a complete and detailed tapestry of interest. The chaos adds adventure, while the predictability gives a strong background, and the forefront is filled with such detail we are immediately transported to this other world and held captive in it.
The pace of the story is quick. There is no downtime, just some occasional pauses to catch your breath and gain some background understanding. Ms. Reeder builds the world, seemingly effortlessly, in a way that is easy for the reader to absorb and remember intermixed with one catastrophic event after another. The action keeps the reader engaged and wanting to read “just a little more” until the hour is late and the book is done. As I said, I was thrilled that the next book is already available.
I recommend this book to a wide range of readers. There is some sexual activity, but I would let my more mature middle schoolers read it. The swearing is PG, there is violence is in the story but despite pools of blood, it’s actually not that graphic. Religion is mentioned, but as this is a parallel world to ours, most people should be able to handle it, as the deities are mentioned but not long services or devout churchy-ness. As I said, the pace is quick, the book is well edited and therefore, I recommend it to almost anyone. If you enjoy urban fantasy, go get your copy of Gilded Fae!