⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 4 out of 5 stars
What an interesting story concept! In The Golden Desires we are introduced to two main characters: Trent & Isabella. Trent lives in the modern world, in a large city (exactly what city isn’t important) and he’s fed up with his life. The busy-busy, rush-rush of his daily grind has finally done him in and he decides to kip off into the wilderness for some solitude. While journeying he sees, as if a mirage in the distance, a huge castle-like fortress atop a distant mountain. Driven by curiosity he endeavors to reach the huge edifice.
Meanwhile, in that far away fortress, lives a young woman: Isabella. Her society is the polar opposite of Trent’s, an egalitarian civilization where everyone works for the betterment of others, safe within the walls of their city. As Trent journeys ever nearer, both parties begin to have dreams of one another, drawn inexorably toward someone they’ve never met.
When Trent finally reaches the fortress, he finds only rubble. The issue: Trent and Isabella are centuries apart! While they can see and interact with one another, none of the villagers can see Trent, nor can he see them or the thriving village within which they live. This magical quality was a nice twist, delving into the realm of fantasy romance.
This is the fourth book I’ve read by Ann Pratley, and as such the style of The Golden Desires felt very familiar to me. As some reviewers have pointed out, Ms Pratley’s writing can include some rather long sentences, however this never bothered me in her other works and especially not in this tale. In this particular instance, the author’s style was well suited to the tone of the world she has created. It provided an old-world flair, reminiscent of classic literature and befitting of her unique civilization.
I enjoyed the budding relationship between Trent and Isabella. I especially found Trent’s awakening to a new way of living particularly endearing. My only quibble was that the ending of the story felt rather abrupt. I know there is a second book planned, and the ending was not a cliffhanger, but it still felt a tad lacking (to me). Did it leave me hungry for the next installment? Absolutely! As with her other books, Ann kept me enchanted throughout.
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