This review does not contain any spoilers for The Silvered Serpents but may contain very minor spoilers for The Gilded Wolves.
Synopsis: They are each other’s fiercest love, greatest danger, and only hope.
Séverin and his team members might have successfully thwarted the Fallen House, but victory came at a terrible cost — one that still haunts all of them. Desperate to make amends, Séverin pursues a dangerous lead to find a long lost artifact rumored to grant its possessor the power of God.
Their hunt lures them far from Paris, and into the icy heart of Russia where crystalline ice animals stalk forgotten mansions, broken goddesses carry deadly secrets, and a string of unsolved murders makes the crew question whether an ancient myth is a myth after all.
As hidden secrets come to the light and the ghosts of the past catch up to them, the crew will discover new dimensions of themselves. But what they find out may lead them down paths they never imagined.
A tale of love and betrayal as the crew risks their lives for one last job. (Goodreads)
Publication Date: September 8th, 2020 (Wednesday Books)
Genres: YA Fantasy, 2nd part of The Gilded Wolves trilogy
Trigger Warnings: child abuse, mutiliation, anti-semitism, animal cruelty mentions, murder
The Silvered Serpents is the highly anticipated sequel to The Gilded Wolves and I was beyond excited to read it. This book surpassed all my expectations and I truly loved it so much. Did this book make me emotional? YES. Was this book super stunning in every way? ALSO YES!
The story follows the group after the events of The Gilded Wolves. The tone of this book is grim and they have to continue the journey they started in the first book. I love how this book not only takes the story and the plot forward but also gives more depth to the characters and the character arcs. I also truly loved how you think that it can’t get more painful than The Gilded Wolves but then Roshani is like: just you wait. There was a treasure hunt in this book mixed with secrets and intrigue and it was glorious. It was emotional, painful, interesting and keeps you reading because of the secretive vibe of the book. I loved the first book so much and after reading the sequel, my love for this series has only grown.
The characters in this book are some of my favourite bookish characters ever! I adored them in book one and this book just made me love them even more. In this book, we see a more grim Séverin and even though his character frustrated me, I loved how well it was written and the direction it took.
Laila was amazing as ever and her love and protection for the group was always warming to read. In this book, we also see her as a more self-assured person and I loved watching her character grow in that aspect. I also liked that Zofia’s character was given more depth and scenes and I enjoyed reading her scenes so much. Enrique was also amazing and this book also explores more of his historian side and his mixed race identity and his struggle with fitting in.
Hypnos is his adorable and supportive self just wanting to be included in the group. All the characters are written well and if you loved them in book one, The Silvered Serpents will only make you love them more (and also make you more afraid for them). There also quite a few interesting new characters who only make the story more better and suspenseful.
The World Building
One of my favourite things about this series is the intricate and well written world building. It is so rich and beautiful. This book is set in Russia and the descriptions of chilly and snowy Russia mixed with the intriguing story set the perfect vibe for the book. The world sucks you right in and it makes you feel like you’re actually watching it it unfold in front of your eyes. I loved how all the fantasy elements were woven together with the world and the plot, making it a stunning book giving the most perfect winter vibes.
The Writing and Pacing
The writing was so good. It was so well-written and the writing goes well with the plot. It flowed like an undisturbed stream of water and it made the reading experience so much better. The pacing was fast-paced and a treasure hunt trope with lots of secrets and twists made this book really hard to stop reading once you start.
This book tackles colonialism and racism just like book one but this book also majorly focuses on anti-semitism narrative and sexism in 19th century Russia. It talks about the horrendous treatment of women and how some of them are considered more “disposable” than others and how this is a consequence of the deep rooted racism, misogyny and patriarchy in the society. Historical fiction is a genre which might get boring but Roshani Chokshi does it so well that there is no part where you feel bored or want to stop. She handles everything so sensitively and combines the fantasy, mythology and intriguing elements so well.
Overall, The Silvered Serpents is a stunning sequel which will make you fall in love with the series, tug at your heartstrings and make the wait for book three even more difficult. This is one of my all-time favourite series so I highly recommend this for everyone who is a fan of rich world building, diverse cast of characters and found family with a superb mix of fantasy and mythology elements.
Thank you to the publisher Wednesday Books for providing me with an eARC through Edelweiss. All opinions are my own.
Have you read The Gilded Wolves and/or The Silvered Serpents?
Do you plan on reading it? Tell me about it!