Gild by Raven Kennedy

Five Word Summary

Icky, evocative, thrilling, explicit, epic.


  • Fantasy lovers
  • Dark Spice Lovers


The fae abandoned this world to us. And the ones with power rule.


Gold floors, gold walls, gold furniture, gold clothes. In Highbell, in the castle built into the frozen mountains, everything is made of gold.

Even me.

King Midas rescued me. Dug me out of the slums and placed me on a pedestal. I’m called his precious. His favored. I’m the woman he Gold-Touched to show everyone that I belong to him. To show how powerful he is. He gave me protection, and I gave him my heart. And even though I don’t leave the confines of the palace, I’m safe.

Until war comes to the kingdom and a deal is struck.

Suddenly, my trust is broken. My love is challenged. And I realize that everything I thought I knew about Midas might be wrong.

Because these bars I’m kept in, no matter how gilded, are still just a cage. But the monsters on the other side might make me wish I’d never left.

The myth of King Midas reimagined. This compelling adult fantasy series is as addictive as it is unexpected. With romance, intrigue, and danger, the gilded world of Orea will grip you from the very first page.

Please Note: This book contains explicit content and darker elements, including mature language, violence, and rape. It is not intended for anyone under 18 years of age. This is book one in a series.

My Thoughts

This is not an easy book for me to review. Initially, I considered abandoning it. The sex at the beginning (it opens with an orgy) is not hot – it’s icky. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind spice in my stories, but this was … challenging. We are talking rape, group sex and other dark themes. Which meant, instead of it being juicy and intriguing, it was gross and repulsive. Some people have compared it to Game of Thrones, but I would argue that George RR Martin knew how to handle his discomforting themes with consummate skill. This just felt … wrong. It was as if the writer was simply trying to shock as much as she could. I’ve also seen comparisons to Sarah J. Maas and Jennifer L. Armentrout, but I disagree with this, too. SJM, in particular, manages to make her books sexy. The sex scenes come (no pun intended) at the right time and they progress the story and characters. This felt like banging for shock’s sake alone.

However, I kept reading another page, then another page and suddenly, it was like the sun came out from behind a cloud. There was a shift in the story, and I was captivated. It moved from sex dungeon to fantasy quest filling with danger, friendship and became entirely page turning.

The bad guys were scary, and the stakes were high. We get to see the main character, Auren, show her compassionate side, pushing against the ‘must-not’ rules to help others. Now we have a character to root for (no pun intended). I admit, by the end I was yearning to find out what happens. I have to know how Auren’s story plays out and discover who the villains are and who the heroes are. I suspect we are in for a surprise here.

There is a good twist at the end and it is well set up for the story to continue.

So, if I’d only read the first part of the book, I would have given it one star. But because it redeemed itself, I gave it 3.5 stars and will go on to read book 2 this month because I need the questions answered. Which says – ultimately – it was a good story!


Love the dark, moody cover, but to any parents out there – beware. It may look YA, but the book IS NOT!

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