DNF Review: Gilded by Christina L. Farley

Gilded #1
Christina Farley
Sixteen-year-old Jae Hwa Lee is a Korean-American girl with a black belt, a deadly proclivity with steel-tipped arrows, and a chip on her shoulder the size of Korea itself. When her widowed dad uproots her to Seoul from her home in L.A., Jae thinks her biggest challenges will be fitting in to a new school and dealing with her dismissive Korean grandfather. Then she discovers that a Korean demi-god, Haemosu, has been stealing the soul of the oldest daughter of each generation in her family for centuries. And she's next.

But that’s not Jae’s only problem.

There's also Marc. Irresistible and charming, Marc threatens to break the barriers around Jae's heart. As the two grow closer, Jae must decide if she can trust him. But Marc has a secret of his own—one that could help Jae overturn the curse on her family for good. It turns out that Jae's been wrong about a lot of things: her grandfather is her greatest ally, even the tough girl can fall in love, and Korea might just be the home she's always been looking for.
I tried to pick up Gilded where I left off at 90 pages I think but I couldn't go on. I really couldn't. 

At first it was like: Woooohoooo! Asian-inspired YA! First time I read something inspired by Korean mythology!. Then, the opening chapters were sort of okay. Mmmhhmmmm. Okay, it's fine. But as it progressed it went from five out of five to one out of five fast. And I just couldn't finish it.

I had high expectations I guess since I just love myself some Asian YA. But it just went stale. My problem with these kind of YA where you're inspired with a whole other culture is that some fail to hit the mark and capture the essence of that culture. It's like typical YA and let's just slap on some Asian elements there. Sometimes it's the lack of world-building and immersion. Sometimes it's the treatment. 

I also had a problem with the conversations. *sobs* Everybody spoke perfect English. OMG. Even the effing mythological character Haemosu spoke English and his reason was because I'm awesome that way in not so many words. The traditional harabeoji almost always spoke English. 

Ayanami Faerudo


  1. Aw, that's a bummer. This one looked really promising, too. Sorry this one didn't work out for you!

    1. All that promise, down the drain it went.


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