Hello fellow book nerds!
I hope you are all doing well and are having a great reading year so far.
This book has caught my eye before and when it was the group book for the Sci-Fi/Fantasy team for the Trope-ical Readathon, I knew it was the perfect time to pick it up.
Have you read this debut yet?
This Golden Flame
3 out of 5 stars
Taken from Goodreads
Orphaned and forced to serve her country’s ruling group of scribes, Karis wants nothing more than to find her brother, long ago shipped away. But family bonds don’t matter to the Scriptorium, whose sole focus is unlocking the magic of an ancient automaton army.
In her search for her brother, Karis does the seemingly impossible—she awakens a hidden automaton. Intelligent, with a conscience of his own, Alix has no idea why he was made. Or why his father—their nation’s greatest traitor—once tried to destroy the automatons.
Suddenly, the Scriptorium isn’t just trying to control Karis; it’s hunting her. Together with Alix, Karis must find her brother…and the secret that’s held her country in its power for centuries.
This wasn’t a bad story but it also wasn’t anything memorable either. As a debut novel, I will say I am excited to see what other books Emily will give us and I am looking forward to her next one. But overall, this book is going to be a hit or miss for some. I really enjoyed the storyline and the world that was created but I wish more of the world was explained. There was so much potential to give us more information about the past and what had happened and I felt like that was a really big missed opportunity. Every time the past was brought up, I found my interest piqued a little to find out more information, but it was always so vague and never fulfilling. A lot was thrown into this novel as well which convoluted the plot a little but I understand where she was trying to go.
The characters were good but could have been better. What I found really successful was the dual point of view, especially Alix’s. It was definitely interesting getting the automation’s point of view and it worked out very well for the story. But it was honestly only Alix who had any development at all. Karis had a little but I felt like not much changed for her character. It was really nice though that romance wasn’t a huge aspect of this story. It really gave the author more time to focus on what was going on in the book rather than trying to do the love aspect. While we do get some relationship blooming, it wasn’t for the main characters and it worked.
Overall, This Golden Flame by Emily Victoria was good, but it had so much potential. I thought this world was absolutely fascinating but it could have been so much more. There was a lot of missed opportunities in the world building that I felt like would have made this book more memorable. I know representation is huge in books, and there was definitely a lot in this book that completely worked. It all felt natural and not just placed there because they wanted it to be. But there wasn’t much more to the characters than that. No real development ever really happened except for Alix. While this was an interesting concept and was good, it’s just not a story that will probably stick with me. If you are looking for a fast read without having too much detail, I would absolutely recommend this book for you.
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