Publisher, Date:
New York : Del Rey Books, 2017.
358 pages ; 22 cm
In an England where magically gifted aristocrats rule, not all are free; not all are equal; not all will be saved. Commoners must serve the Equals for ten years. Abi is a servant to England's most powerful family, but her spirit is free. So when she falls for one of their noble-born sons, Abi faces a terrible choice. Uncovering the family's secrets might win her liberty-- but will her heart pay the price? Abi's brother, Luke, is enslaved in a brutal factory town. Far from his family, cruelly oppressed, with friends whose ideals could cost him everything, Luke has discovered there may be a power even greater than magic: revolution.
9780425284155 (hardcover)
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MAGIC RULES. WE SERVE. <br> <br> In a darkly fantastical debut set in modern-day Britain, magic users control everything: wealth, politics, power--and you. If you're not one of the ultimate one-percenters--the magical elite--you owe them ten years of service. Do those years when you're old, and you'll never get through them. Do them young, and you'll never get over them.<br> <br> This is the darkly decadent world of Gilded Cage . In its glittering milieu move the all-powerful Jardines and the everyday Hadleys. The families have only one thing in common: Each has three children. But their destinies entwine when one family enters the service of the other. They will all discover whether any magic is more powerful than the human spirit.<br> <br> Have a quick ten years. . . . <br> <br> Praise for Gilded Cage <br> <br> "Beautifully characterised and compellingly plotted, Gilded Cage is an impressive debut." -- The Guardian <br> <br> "Exquisitely wicked . . . a lavishly opulent, yet brutally vivid, alternate England which subtly questions modern beliefs . . . If ever there was a speculative fiction book that captured the zeitgeist of an era this is it." -- SFFWorld <br> <br> "An alternate modern-day England where enticing drama and social unrest mix with aristocratic scandal and glamorous magic . . . conjuring up the specters of Les Mis#65533;rables and Downton Abbey . . . an absorbing first installment that presages an intriguing new fantasy series." -- Kirkus Reviews <br> <br> " Gilded Cag e is a heart-pounding combination of dark magic, political revolution, and forbidden romance that had me addicted from the first page!" --Danielle L. Jensen, USA Today bestselling author of The Malediction Trilogy <br> <br> "Devious and deliciously dark with lashings of magic, mystery, and mayhem, this juggernaut of a book will keep you hanging on by your fingernails until the very last page." --Taran Matharu, New York Times bestselling author of the Summoner series <br> <br> "A dark and intriguing vision of an alternate, magic-drenched Britain, Gilded Cage kept me up long into the night." --Aliette de Bodard, author of The House of Shattered Wings <br> <br> "Brisk plotting, sympathetic characters, and plenty of intrigue will keep readers on the edges of their seats, eager for the next book in a very promising series." -- Publishers Weekly (starred review)
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  School Library Journal Review

This captivating dystopian tale of forbidden love has all the makings of a successful YA fantasy novel. Riveting and accessible writing will quickly draw readers into a story full of surprises, grief, and mystery. The book follows two siblings at the bottom of their extremely stratified society. Abi and Luke must endure 10 years of mandatory service to the exclusive and manipulative elite class, ironically named the "Equals." Blending modern technology and Oliver Twist-esque poverty and cruelty, James has created a Britain that teens will want to see fall. Readers will easily connect with the variety of narrators. Some may be turned off by the blatant political undertones, but the plot is so well developed that most won't mind. VERDICT An easy sell to fans of fantasy and dystopian fiction, but be prepared-teens will be anxious for the next installment in the planned trilogy.-Ashley Selima, Lincoln Public Library, RI © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

  Booklist Review

At first glance, the world of James' first novel seems familiar, but that illusion is quickly dispelled. The monarchy has long since been destroyed the British aristocracy has been replaced with Equals, people born with magical gifts, who lord it over the commoners with their powers. The story starts just before siblings Abi and Luke begin the 10 years of slavery mandated for all commoners (i.e., those without magic). Unexpectedly separated, they quickly learn how little they understood of the Equals as their views of the world shift. Luke adapts to life in a factory town by joining a rebellion, while Abi and the rest of the family live together but grown apart while serving a powerful family of Equals. Nobody emerges unscathed from their slavery years, as the Hadley family can attest after mere months of service. The twists and turns make this book hard to set down; a second read may reveal many details that readers might breeze past the first time through. Readers will eagerly await the rest of the trilogy started here.--Moritz, Frances Copyright 2016 Booklist
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