I received this book via the publisher CamCat Books. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of this review.Gold Spun by Brandie June
Series: Gold Spun #1
Published by CamCat Books on 2021-06-08
Length: 530 pages
Reviewing eARC from the publisher CamCat Books
Reading Challenges: 2022 Beat the Backlist
If Nor can’t spin gold, she can always spin lies.
When seventeen-year-old Nor rescues a captured faerie in the woods, he gifts her with a magical golden thread she can use to summon him for a favor. Instead, Nor uses it for a con—to convince villagers to buy straw that can be transformed into gold. Her trick works a little too well, attracting the suspicion of Prince Casper, who hates nobody more than a liar. Intent on punishing Nor, he demands that she spin a room of straw into gold and as her reward, he will marry her. Should she refuse or fail, the consequences will be dire. Desperate for help, Nor summons the faerie’s aid, launching a complicated dance as she must navigate between her growing feelings for both the prince and faerie boy and who she herself wishes to become.
I’m doing things a bit backwards this week, reviewing Curse Undone yesterday for a blog tour before I’ve reviewed book one. I debated adding my review of Gold Spun to the blog tour post, however I enjoyed the book enough that it deserved its own post 😀
Gold Spun by Brandie June is the first book in a YA fantasy duology about a young girl trying to keep her family alive, a prince who should never become king, and a fae boy who will unravel it all. I love retellings, especially those that take the darker Grimm tales and put their own spin to it which is exactly what June has done with this one. You’ll never see Rumpelstiltskin the same way!
Elenora Molnar is seventeen when she encounters a fae in the Biawood. The fae in question is trapped by two hunters who plan to kill him or turn him into the king for a reward. Taking pity on the seemingly innocent fae, Nor helps him escape and asks for nothing in return. The fae gives her a golden bracelet weaved from a piece of his own shirt and says that if she ever wants to call in her debt, she can by simply adding her own blood to the bracelet. It isn’t long before Nor, a cunning thief who travels the countryside with her brothers selling a miracle “cure all” potion, finds herself face to face with Prince Casper, the soon-to-be king who doesn’t take kindly to thieves. Trapped and unsure of what to do, Nor finds herself in a tower full of straw and with no choice but to call on her favor.
The world building is vivid, and you don’t even realize it is happening. There are no info-dumps, rather it is built into the story itself, woven into the action and revealed as Nor lives it. Nor is a fun character to follow. It was easy to empathize with her and understand her actions. I felt so bad for her when she was caught, but even more so how and why she’s caught. This girl will do anything for her brothers and that unfortunately comes back to haunt her.
The author sets up a small love triangle between Nor and Pel, the fae, and Nor and Prince Casper. I wasn’t sure how I felt about it at first. I was intrigued by Pel. Nor describes him as beautiful, a god among men, but he frightens her with his blood magic and all the unknowns of the fae. Casper is harder to like. I wanted to love him from the start, however his harsh treatment of Nor and then his sudden reversal of feelings (like he was ready to execute her, then he’s declaring his love for her) was questionable.
Overall, I really enjoyed Gold Spun. The twist on the classic tale along with the world June created for it is amazing. I devoured it. Highly recommend for anyone that enjoys YA fantasy with a touch of romance.
This sounds good and I do love retellings like this! Thanks for sharing! I’ll have to look into adding to my own TBR.
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