Review – The Empire of Gold by S.A. Chakraborty

The Empire of Gold by S.A. Chakraborty

Book Title: The Empire of Gold

Book Description: The final chapter in the bestselling, critically acclaimed Daevabad Trilogy, in which a con-woman and an idealistic djinn prince join forces to save a magical kingdom from a devastating civil war. Daevabad has fallen. After a brutal conquest stripped the city of its magic, Nahid leader Banu Manizheh and her resurrected commander, Dara, must try to repair their fraying alliance and stabilize a fractious, warring people. But the bloodletting and loss of his beloved Nahri have unleashed the worst demons of Dara’s dark past. To vanquish them, he must face some ugly truths about his history and put himself at the mercy of those he once considered enemies. Having narrowly escaped their murderous families and Daevabad’s deadly politics, Nahri and Ali, now safe in Cairo, face difficult choices of their own. While Nahri finds peace in the old rhythms and familiar comforts of her human home, she is haunted by the knowledge that the loved ones she left behind and the people who considered her a savior are at the mercy of a new tyrant. Ali, too, cannot help but look back, and is determined to return to rescue his city and the family that remains. Seeking support in his mother’s homeland, he discovers that his connection to the marid goes far deeper than expected and threatens not only his relationship with Nahri, but his very faith. As peace grows more elusive and old players return, Nahri, Ali, and Dara come to understand that in order to remake the world, they may need to fight those they once loved . . . and take a stand for those they once hurt.

Book Author: S.A. Chakraborty

Book Edition: 1st

Book Format: EBook

Publisher - Orgnization: Harper Voyager

Publisher Logo:

Date published: 2020-06-30

Number Of Pages: 784

  • Writing - 8/10
  • Art - 8/10
  • Overall - 8/10
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The Empire of Gold ends The Daevabad Trilogy with a firm landing that won’t disappoint anyone who enjoys the detailed plot and lush worldbuilding.


Spoiler warning: please note that The Empire of Gold is the third book in a trilogy. Since I pretty much have to discuss where some characters are when the book begins, there will be spoilers for The City of Brass and The Kingdom of Copper. I would recommend completing the entire Daevabad trilogy before reading this review, but then again, not your mom.

The Empire of Gold by S.A. Chakraborty

The Empire of Gold is the third book in the historical fantasy trilogy titled The Daevabad Trilogy. The Daevabad Trilogy centers on the city of Daevabad and the factions who wish to rule it. Our way into Daevabad was Nahri, former professional con-woman from 18th century Cairo. Nahri has healing powers that she discovers are inherited from her Nahid family. Early in The City of Brass, she meets/kinda resurrects Dara (short for Darayavahoush), a legendary, terrifying djinn warrior. They go to the legendary city of Daevabad, where six djinn tribes once ruled. There, they meet a number of political characters, most notably Aliyazad (Ali), second son of the king, our third point-of-view character. The three of them clash throughout the first and second books, in ways best described by the books themselves.

S.A. Chakraborty - The Empire of Gold
S.A. Chakraborty – The Empire of Gold

As The Empire of Gold opens, Daevabad is rocked by the violent regime change that closed The Kingdom of Copper. Nahri has accidentally brought herself and Ali back to Cairo and, considering the state Daevabad was in when they left, she thinks they might be better off if they stayed. However, both Ali and Nahri feel like they can’t leave Daevabad to its new leaders, especially since they suspect they accidentally turned off magic in Daevabad on the way out.

Speaking of Daevabad, Nahri and Ali suspected correctly: magic is gone. Dara and his new Nahid leader, Nahri’s exiled mother Baru Manizeh, try to pick up the pieces and control Daevabad. However, Baru Manizeh’s tactics aren’t what one would expect from a famous healer, and Dara is torn between the leader and the people.

Plot Development

The Empire of Gold was a well-written and paced book. Even though a lot happens, this installment did not remotely feel like it contained 700+ pages. It doesn’t even feel like it’s overstuffed. I read it, in a few sittings, in just three days. It makes sense why it seems like this book moves rapidly. The situation in and around Daevabad rapidly shifts, and the plot shifts with it without making it seem over-dramatic. 

It feels like I’m not saying a lot about the plot. That’s because it feels inappropriate to discuss major plot developments that would be spoilers for the earlier books. I recommend you start this trilogy from the beginning and read pretty much straight through. You won’t regret it.

Conclusion – The Empire of Gold gives The Daevabad Trilogy a Solid Landing

The Empire of Gold is an excellent ending to an excellent trilogy. It’s action-packed, and the story shifts in ways that aren’t quite twists, but can still surprise. The ending feels completely earned, without being too gleeful or too devastating. If Chakraborty really wanted, she could go back to Daevabad and write more about the world after the chaos. There’s possibly a door or two open left for her to do that. However, if she never does, the series will not suffer. 

I received this title from NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Are you going to read The Empire of Gold? Has this review convinced you to pick up The Daevabad Trilogy?

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About the author

Siobhan Dempsey

Siobhan needs books to function, and therefore can infodump quite a lot about them, particularly when they're either science fiction or fantasy.

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