Friday, October 19, 2012

Review: Gilt by Katherine Longshore

Gilt by Katherine Longshore
Release Date: May 15, 2012 
Publisher: Viking Juvenile 
Source: Library 
In the court of King Henry VIII, nothing is free-- and love comes at the highest price of all.

When Kitty Tylney's best friend, Catherine Howard, worms her way into King Henry VIII's heart and brings Kitty to court, she's thrust into a world filled with fabulous gowns, sparkling jewels, and elegant parties. No longer stuck in Cat's shadow, Kitty's now caught between two men--the object of her affection and the object of her desire. But court is also full of secrets, lies, and sordid affairs, and as Kitty witnesses Cat's meteoric rise and fall as queen, she must figure out how to keep being a good friend when the price of telling the truth could literally be her head.
I LOVE the Tudors. I mean, seriously, I LOVE them! I'm sure it was in the fourth grade when I first heard about Catherine Howard and Henry VIII of England and that was when I began hating Catherine. For those of you who know nothing of the Tudors, look them up because there is a lot to know about them! So along those lines, Gilt by Katharine Longshore was a perfect read into the life of Catherine Howard that went into all the scandals. It's long, yes, but it flies by really fast because you get seeped into the scandal and constant change and the lives of Catherine and Kitty.

I don't like characters who seem to have no backbone whatsoever and our Kitty seemed to be that girl. Did I like her? Yes, I did! Did I want her to stand up for herself? YES TIMES A MILLION. But you know, Kitty reminded me if my friend: fiercely loyal, determined and a very nice person that people used and treated horribly. Often times, I wanted to hug her because back then, if you were someone in the social classes, you didn't get rid of it. Kitty was someone because of Catherine and Kitty would literally have nothing if Catherine left her so Kitty had to get used to Catherine. A lot of the plot focuses on how Catherine's life and marriage to Henry VIIl impacted the monarchy and Kitty as well. A lot of Catherine's scandals were mentioned and you get a great feel for the type of person she was.

You all should know how much I love a romance. While I felt the the romance was rushed in Gilt, taking in the historical context, it fit the period. Many people didn't live beyond 30 (some obviously lived longer) so things happened quickly. Most women didn't have a love marriage either; the marriages were arranged between the girl's father and a man so it was refreshing (and well, OBVIOUS) that there was a romance.

I loved Katherine Longshore's writing. I mean, really, I loved it. I flew through the book because her writing kept me so engaged. Yes, I liked the plot and the characters too but the writing is the glue that puts everything together and makes the book THE BOOK. Her way of weaving words together was really well done and I loved it!

All of that said, I did feel that Gilt didn't have a lot of substance. While I liked the characters and the plot, it didn't go very deep into the characters actions or motivation or emotions. It was all on the surface which really made for a quick read.

Overall, I liked Gilt a lot. Did it have issues, yes it did but what book doesn't? Gilt was an enjoyable read with lots of scandal and lost loves and even some hilarious events. The majority of the time you want to slap Catherine and give Kitty a hug. While on the longer side of books, Gilt is surprisingly a quick read.
Cover Comments: 
Er. No. Just no. I love the font but the rest of the cover? Just, what were they thinking?! 
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