BEYOND THE REALM OF DREAMS IS A WORLD SHE NEVER IMAGINED
Masayi Sairu was raised to be dainty, delicate, demure . . . and deadly. She is one of the emperor’s Golden Daughters, as much a legend as she is a commodity. One day, Sairu will be contracted in marriage to a patron, whom she will secretly guard for the rest of her life.
But when she learns that a sacred Dream Walker of the temple seeks the protection of a Golden Daughter, Sairu forgoes marriage in favor of this role. Her skills are stretched to the limit, for assassins hunt in the shadows, and phantoms haunt in dreams. With only a mysterious Faerie cat and a handsome slave—possessed of his own strange abilities—to help her, can Sairu shield her new mistress from evils she can neither see nor touch?
For the Dragon is building an army of fire. And soon the heavens will burn.
My Review: Wow! What a book! At nearly 600 pages Golden Daughter is much longer than any other book Anne Elisabeth Stengl has published. I felt a little exhausted it after reading it but I don’t believe there would have been a way to shorten it. However, just as all her other books, Golden Daughter did not fail to disappoint. This book is a wild and epic journey across time and eternity. I believe that the author incorporated many more biblical parallels than I have seen in any of her other novels. At one point, her plot is similar to a very familiar Bible story. You’ll have to read it to find out what it is!
One thing about the book that was confusing from time to time was the names. The author gave some clarification in the back, but not enough to clear up all matters of confusion. The names she used sound more Japanese or Chinese than anything. It can be difficult to tell who from who at times because the names sound so similar. However, the further I got in the story and the more I got to know the characters, the less confused I was.
I really liked Sairu. She was the main character in Golden Daughter. Sairu was brave, loyal, and devoted to her mistress no matter what happened. No one ever gave her any mercy and she didn’t expect any. She was one of the strongest characters I’ve come across in quite some time.
Jovan and Sunan were quite interesting characters. Their personalities were very different. I can’t reveal too much, but I will say that I felt sorry for Sunan, even though he was the one who made the wrong choices in the end. However, I think that he will be all right in the end because he has appeared before in Anne Elisabeth Stengl's novella Goddess Tithe.
I wasn’t sure at first how Sairu’s mistress, Lady Hariawan, really fit into the story. She did almost absolutely nothing throughout the whole story. It almost seemed as if she served no purpose at all. She just kind of existed. And whenever she spoke(which was rare), it seemed that she was insane. However, at the end of Golden Daughter (and I do mean the very end), everything made more sense. I believe that we’ll see more of Lady Hariawan in future books. And I don’t think she’ll be as helpless as she appeared to be in this Goldstone Wood novel.
I was really glad for Eanrin’s presence in the novel. Without him, there would have been no levity at all in the book. He was almost always in his cat form, which was quite inconvenient for him at times. But I don’t think he wanted to reveal his entire form to Sairu until he absolutely had to. I have to admit, that Eanrin has turned out to be one of my favorites throughout this entire series. It is my hope that he and Imraldera will end up together in the end. He really does have a tender, sweet heart, though he almost always refuses to reveal it.
I give Golden Daughter 4 out of 5 stars. It was truly an epic story, however the names could have been delineated more in order to eliminate confusion.