This fantastical retelling of King Midas’s story includes pirates, curses and deadly politics. King Midas wished for the power to turn anything he wanted into gold with a simple touch, but this backfires when he turns his own daughter to gold.
His daughter Kora is forced to live with remnants of his curse and now she must sail across the sea to confront the merciless Captain Skulls who stole her father’s gold, her curse and maybe even fall in love with a handsome pirate.
I give this book 3.5 stars (out of five). The simplest way to describe this story is fantasy but like with pirates. I really liked the main character Kora’s curse, storyline and arc throughout the book, she was easily my favourite part of the entire story.
This story follows Kora and her journey to try to save her father and overcome her curse, this is a retelling of King Midas’s story in which Kora is his daughter and he accidentally turned her to gold. He was able to turn her back into a normal girl but she now has golden skin as well as an odd connection with gold and all the materials her father turned to gold. King Midas’s gold has been stolen and Kora is determined to get it back because without it her father is dying, so she sets off with one of her suitors named Aris and goes to sea, hunting down that gold that was stolen by a ruthless pirate known as Captain Skulls. Kora has to go on this mission so she can guide them because she can tell roughly where the gold is, Kora’s cousin Hettie also sneaks onto the ship and joins her.
[Spoiler Warning, skip the next three paragraphs to avoid them.]
Along the way Kora falls in love with Aris and they learn that the captain of the ship Royce is secretly plotting against them, so Kora and Aris plan to run away. But in the middle of a fight Kora realizes that Aris was tricking her and didn’t actually care about or love her. The rest of the story is her journey to recover all the gold with the help of Royce and the rest of the crew, until the final battle between them and Captain Skulls with Aris on his side.
The plot twist with Kora’s main love interest Aris actually working for the enemy was done very well, I didn’t see it coming at all and it was interesting and added greatly to the story.
The main thing I didn’t like about the story was that as soon as the Aris love interest was removed from the picture he was immediately replaced with another guy which is really not a good look. Because the female main character should be able to be alone and not need to have a man protecting her the entire time, especially considering she can often save herself or use her own strengths and abilities to get out of situations.
I didn’t fully explain this in the summary but Kora has really interesting abilities with the gold, because she can absorb the gold and then transfer it into something else. Even being able to freeze people and turn them to gold which was super cool, she also proved herself to be very strong in other aspects besides her powers throughout the story.
The final plot twist was actually very well done and I really liked it but I’m not 100% sure if it really makes sense with the rest of the story and set up but I’m not committed enough to question it.
One of the only things I wish was done differently is to show more of the aftermath of the events of the story, instead of just briefly stating what would likely happen in the last chapter. After reading this book I found out it has a sequel that was released more recently. I probably won’t read it unless I happen to come across it. This book wasn’t outstanding enough for me to specifically seek out the sequel to see what happens next, but that does explain why there wasn’t a completely solid ending.
Overall I did like the plot but I think there were definitely a few times when the build up didn’t quite live up to the outcome. Besides that and a few other things I disliked about this book I really enjoyed reading it and especially loved Kora.