Gilded Cage (Dark Gifts #1) by Vic James

When I had time to read this, it was a fast read. Dystopian Britain is ruled by a powerful, magical class called Equals that make the common people serve for them for 10 years of their lives as slaves. Abi’s parents still need to serve their slave days so she plans a way for her family to serve together at an Equal’s estate instead of at a slavetown, thinking that the work will be less grueling and cruel. Her plan goes sideways when her brother, Luke, is reassigned to a slavetown, Millmoor. Her parents and her along with her sister, Daisy, are sent to Kyneston Estate, owned by the Jardines, one of the most powerful, and as it turns out evil and scary-powerful, Equal families in the country. As 10-year-old Daisy cares for one of the Jardine’s bastard children and falls in love with the eldest of the Jardine children, Abi falls in love with the middle Jardine child. But comments falling in love with Equals is dangerous, especially since the mother of the child Daisy cares for was a commoner that was “accidentally” killed by the child’s father and eldest Jardine child, Gavar. Meanwhile, Luke is befriended in Millmoor by a group of misfits trying to make life better at Millmoor and cause an uprising by the slaves as the country’s Parliament questions the morality of the slave days. Will Abi’s family survive their slave days? Will the country change for the better or is it doomed to be forever trapped in the past?

I loved the world building and how all of the characters are very human, having good and bad in them. There are still a lot of questions that need to be answered at the end of this book that makes me wish the second book was out now.

I gave this book 4 out of 5 stars on Goodreads.

I received an advanced readers copy of this book from NetGalley for review consideration.

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