Book Reviews

Book Review: A Golden Fury by Samantha Cohoe

Thea Hope longs to be an alchemist out of the shadow of her famous mother. The two of them are close to creating the legendary Philosopher’s Stone—whose properties include immortality and can turn any metal into gold—but just when the promise of the Stone’s riches is in their grasp, Thea’s mother destroys the Stone in a sudden fit of violent madness.
While combing through her mother’s notes, Thea learns that there’s a curse on the Stone that causes anyone who tries to make it to lose their sanity. With the threat of the French Revolution looming, Thea is sent to Oxford for her safety, to live with the father who doesn’t know she exists. 
But in Oxford, there are alchemists after the Stone who don’t believe Thea’s warning about the curse—instead, they’ll stop at nothing to steal Thea’s knowledge of how to create the Stone. But Thea can only run for so long, and soon she will have to choose: create the Stone and sacrifice her sanity, or let the people she loves die.

Title: A Golden Fury
Author: Samantha Cohoe
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Format: Digital ARC
Publication Date: October 13rd, 2020
Rating:  4.4//5

I’m a sucker for historical fantasy so I knew I HAD to read this one. Throw in alchemy and the quest for the philosophers stone?

I’m sold.

The character of Thea was raised more as an assistant than a daughter. You can see from the very beginning that the love her mother has for is flawed, and that Thea is more a means to an end than a daughter she should love and cherish.

When her mother needs her less and less, her only hope is the letters she receives from Will, her mother’s former apprentice whom she’s in love with. But when her mothers making of the Stone goes awry, she descends into madness and it’s up to Thea to save her.

I was very up and down with my feelings on Thea. She’s a very naive person, and often ignores the advice of good people because they go against what her mother has taught her. I didn’t always like her, but she was SO well written. Although it’s not explicitly stated, I believe Thea did experience mental abuse from her mother, and it shows in the way she cowers to her mothers teachings and ways of thinking.

Thea was also very dismissive of her father and his ideas, and it times it broke my heart, but it really did help round out why Thea was the way she was.

But the heart of this story is the Stone. The stone that can only be made by “the last alchemist”, the stone that is driving mad all those that try and make it.

I love the way the stone and the quest for the stone changes Thea’s relationship with her parents, Will, Valentin, and Dominic. Each person, both with good and bad intentions, help shape Thea and the person she is to come.

Overall this was a very well written story. It was very plot oriented, and although I wanted a little more magic (or I guess alchemy), it was still brilliant.

I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a quick, fun fantasy read!

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