Book Review: The Gilded King By Josie Jaffrey

Like most bibliophiles my TBR pile is ever increasing and sometimes books that I’m desperate to read end up lingering on there much longer than I’d like due to Blog Tour commitments. One such book is The Gilded King which was kindly sent to my by author Josie Jaffrey a couple of months ago, massive thanks Josie! However I’m pleased to say I have now devoured it and have my review ready to share with you, I hope you enjoy reading it!


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 can’t accommodate. The Blue is her prison, not her castle, and she’d escape into 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 going to come down. The only question is what side you’ll be on when they do.


Since finishing The Gilded King, I have agonised for days over writing my review and have begun writing it numerous times. I know whatever I write won’t do this fabulous novel justice, but here it is, I hope you enjoy it…..

This book comes under the umbrella of Young Adult, dystopian fiction which is a genre until a few months ago I hadn’t read much of, now I can’t seem to stop, and this offering is the best yet!

The story is told from two POV’s, Julia, a lowly server in the Blue and Cameron, a silver belonging to the nobility. Julia feels trapped in the city that is meant to be a safe haven from the certain death that awaits her in the Red and dreams of escape. Whilst Cameron spends his time scouring the Red in search of Emmy, a lost member of the silver whose significance becomes clear as the book progresses.

With a distinct hierarchy that’s been in place for centuries and Julia powerless to instigate change she finds herself assigned to serve Lucus. He’s unlike other members of the nobility, kind, gentle and respectful, which leaves Julia in turmoil, uncertain of the boundaries and where she stands.

Cam’s search of the Red has so far been fruitless, but a final lead sends him back out into the Red in the hope of completing his self-enforced mission to find Emmy. His journey isn’t without hurdles though and is far from smooth sailing. Whilst travelling he befriends Felix who provides information to help with his quest and offers to travel with Cameron to help.

But, tensions are building within the Blue and there is trouble afoot. What will happen if the Red begins to seep into the city and who is to blame if it does?

This story is filled with lies, deceit and double crossing which left me with no clue as to what was going on – in a good way! I’ll openly admit I’m one of those readers who tries to work out what’s going to happen, and I genuinely had no clue, especially the ending which left me with a cliff-hanger plus a humdinger of a twist!

Alongside the drama we are also privy to a couple of blossoming romances, including a same-sex love interest – I think this is amazing as it’s not something many books portray. I really enjoyed the love interests as it gave the book some wonderful romantic moments perfectly intertwined with the full-on drama of the story.

The Gilded King is the first book in the Sovereign Series, however there is a prequel series, Sols Invicti. You don’t need to read the previous series as this book works perfectly well as a standalone book, however I feel the background knowledge would be of use to help with understanding the hierarchy and class system of the Blue. It did take me a few chapters to get my head around it, but once I did I was fine.

I loved every second of this book, it’s a real page turner and I have been recommending it to everyone who will listen. I’m super excited to read the second book, The Silver Queen* , which was released today. It will most certainly be fast-tracked to the top of my TBR pile as I’m impatient to find out what happens next.

About The Author

Josie lives in Oxford, England, with her husband and two cats. When she’s not writing, she works as a lawyer, specialising in intellectual property and commercial law. She also runs a video book review club, The Gin Book Club, through her website.

The Solis Invicti series (a prequel series to the Sovereign series) is available now.

To find out more about Josie and her books visit her website or give her a follow on social media; Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

The Gilded King is available to purchase from Amazon*

*This post contains affiliate links

**I was gifted a copy of this book in return for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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