by Raven Kennedy
Book 2 in the Gilded Prisoner Series
“You want to make your life easier? Then be the caged bird that you are and sing.”
For ten years, I’ve lived in a gilded cage inside King Midas’s golden castle. But one night changed everything.
Now I’m here, a prisoner of Fourth Kingdom’s army, and I’m not sure if I’m going to make it out of this in one piece. They’re marching to battle, and I’m the bargaining chip that will either douse the fire or spark a war.
At the heart of my fear, my worry, there’s him—Commander Rip.
Known for his brutality on the battlefield, his viciousness is unsurpassed. But I know the truth about what he is.
The betrayers. The murderers. The ones who nearly destroyed Orea, wiping out Seventh Kingdom in the process. Rip has power sizzling beneath this skin and glinting spikes down his spine. But his eyes—his eyes are the most compelling of all.
When he turns those black eyes on me, I feel captive for an entirely different reason.
I may be out of my cage, but I’m not free, not even close. In the game of kings and armies, I’m the gilded pawn. The question is, can I out maneuver them?
RATED: 18+ CATEGORY: MOOD:
Steamy Adult Fantasy Interesting
Glint is the second book in Raven Kennedy's The Plated Prisoner series, and while having a few different POV's, mostly centers on Auren, King Midas's favored saddle, the one he has gold-touched, as she navigates being prisoner to the fourth kingdom. All she wants is to get back to her beloved King, but as time trickles by, Auren learns more about the fourth kingdom's army, and they aren't the monsters she was told about. And Commander Rip, named for his affinity for ripping the heads off his enemies - he isn't a monster either. As Auren tries to come to terms with the conflicting feelings she has for Commander Rip, and the fractures of trust she has in her King, she is also encouraged by those who are meant to be her enemy to step out of the role as the gilded prisoner, and be herself. When things come to a head, who will Auren side with - the King who rescued her, and protected her, or the Commander who brings out the real Auren? And what deep, devastating secrets will come out in the end? This one was better than the last one. And I'm saying that not hating on the first book, but it just didn't draw me in like I hoped. I was glad to give this series another chance though. Just like the first book, it still is a very original, thought out story. Are some things predictable? Of course! The hints given to us throughout the story are pretty clear. Some spoilery content --------> After the first book, I was sure that Auren was most likely fae. I mean, she did turn the captain to gold, and those ribbons. Plus, she could feel the power emanating from Commander Rip, much more than the humans around her. So getting confirmation on that was pretty cool. <-----------. From a story standpoint, we get a few things clarified for us ---------> like how much power is Auren's vs. Midas < .-------. And as for predictions, who else guessed that -----------> Commander Rip IS King Rot? I spent the whole book SURE of it, stumbled a little bit when Commander Rip and King Rot were in the same room (but held on to the small details that made me think Rip was a decoy), but the confirmation at the very end? I did like that. <-------------
The best part of this book was Auren "owning her shit." For her to see what most others saw. One of the things I hated about the first book was her devotion to King Midas, despite the fact that she was literally in a cage, and he treated her like shit. Her love and gratitude for her rescue from her old life on the streets blinded her to the truly cruel things he did to her. Her skewed idea of love was disturbing. The subtle change throughout this book gave me hope, despite her making the wrong choices. The way this book ends, it gives her another chance to make some rights, BUT, I totally get her feelings of betrayal on both sides of the coin. It took a long ass time for her to "own her shit.," though.
Glint was a massive improvement in character development. Honestly, after Gild, I didn't really want to move on to the second book, but did so because of the rave reviews on #booktok. After Glint, I'm still not head over heels in love with the whole story, but I am intrigued enough to start the third one. And as it's a Kindle Unlimited series, what do I have to lose?
The fighting circle moment
Rip's light kiss
Lu and Judd getting Auren to help steal the wine barrel
Rip helping Auren down from her horse.
Time changes with torment. It stretches on, lengthening seconds, extending minutes. I've learned that pain and fear have a way of prolonging. And as if that weren't cruel enough, our minds make sure we relive those moments again and again and again, long after they've passed.
What a bastard, time is.
Hojat: "We're all captives of something, even things we don't want to admit to."
Rip: "Your anger is misplaced, but I like it. Every time you let it leak out just a little bit more, I can see you better, Goldfinch."
Auren: "You see nothing."
Rip: "Oh, I do. I can't wait to see the rest of you. When you let it go, when you finally let that out, your fury is going to light up the spirit you've shadowed. I hope you burn so bright that you scorch your Golden King down to ash."
I suddenly understand the insects that fly willingly into carnivorous plants. The draw is too strong, the pull too bewitching, that you forget about the danger until you're already trapped inside.
He kissed me.
He kissed me.
He knows what I did, and yet ... he still kissed me.
Lu: "Can I give you some advice, Gildy?"
Auren: "Umm ... sure."
Lu: "Own your shit."
Lu: "There will always be someone who will try to make us choose option one. But don't. Don't lie down and make it easier for the world to keep you under its thumb. Own your shit and choose yourself."
Lu: "And they say women are the weaker sex. Men are only as strong as those sensitive dangly bits between their legs."
Rip: "If you tried, you could shine brighter than the fucking sun. Instead, you've chosen to sit back and wither."
Solider: 'Commander, I must insist that you don't touch King Midas's favored."
Osrik: "I must insist that you shut the fuck up."
I've been bending over backwards for so long that I forgot I even had a spine.
Check out the rest of the Plated Prisoner series