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.
Content Warnings: One mild scene of cutting for blood magic.
Title: Gold Spun
Author: Brandie June
Publication Date: June 8, 2021
Publisher: CamCat Books
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Romance
This book was so good! I loved so many things about this book so I hope I can properly explain my love for those things.
First, the world-building was amazing. June did a brilliant job of explaining everything and fleshing it out so I knew exactly where I was and what I should be seeing. It was a magical and cruel world that was exciting and unpredictable and amazing. I loved getting to experience this world.
There was also some great situational humor in this book. Really, the humor, in general, was superb. We have a great scene right at the beginning with Prince Casper that really shows how great the humor in the book is.
I also really loved our main character Nor. She was always surprising me because she didn’t always do “the right thing.” She did what she had to do to protect those she loved and to survive. Many times, that wasn’t necessarily “the right thing.” I love that about her because that makes her such a real character. She wasn’t there to be liked or appreciated. She just had to do whatever was needed to survive. I liked that about her.
These traits also made her very unlikeable sometimes, but I didn’t mind. I knew she wasn’t the “hero” of the story per se so I expected her to make unlikeable decisions. She’s a bit of a morally gray character in many ways and I was happy about that.
Lastly, the pacing in the book was perfect. It was quick and exciting, but still brought in plenty of emotional moments. The story is a retelling of Rumplestilksen so I thought there would be plenty of predictable moments, but between the fast pace and original characters, it stayed very enjoyable and mostly new.
Overall, June wrote a brilliant book that deserves all the praise and recognition of the world. I’ll certainly be recommending this book to others.
Disclaimer: I voluntarily read and reviewed a gifted and advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
About the Author
Brandie June loves storytelling in all sorts of formats, whether she is marketing animated movies or writing fantasy novels. Most of her early life she was on stage or at least as close to the front row as she could get. Initially an actor, she got her B.A. in Theatre from UCLA and branched out into costume design and playwriting, eventually getting her M.B.A. Her first stand-alone play, a dark comedy about Oscar Wilde, premiered at the Hollywood Fringe Festival to a sold-out run and won the Encore Producers Award. As a writer, she is especially passionate about fantasy and mythology, has published several pieces in anthology, and is a recent finalist with The Writers of the Future Award. Her debut novel, Gold Spun, is a fresh retelling of the Rumpelstiltskin tale through the miller daughter’s POV. Except now the miller’s daughter is a con artist and Rumpelstiltskin is a mysterious faerie with a dark secret.
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