Title: Golden Age
Author: James Maxwell
First published May 1, 2016
466 pages, Kindle Edition
In James Maxwell’s Golden Age, Dion, the youngest prince of Xanthos, and Chloe, a royal princess of Phalesia, stumble upon a strange and advanced warship that takes them on a perilous journey across the sea. Their destination is a kingdom that is not only more powerful than they could have ever imagined but also in a state of chaos.
The ruthless king who rules the land, Solon, is on his deathbed and is building a pyramid of gold to gain entry into heaven. However, he has run out of gold and has turned his attention to Phalesia, where the legendary sacred ark of solid gold resides.
The ark must never be opened, but Solon is not one to heed legends or even the mighty armies of foreign lands. He is determined to get his hands on the ark’s gold, even if it means unleashing the wrath of the ancient shape-shifting race, the eldren, who were long ago banished into the Wilds.
Solon knows that with the gold, he will live forever, but at what cost to Dion and Chloe’s homeland?
About the Author
Meet James Maxwell, a renowned author who has captured the hearts of readers worldwide with his imaginative fantasy and science fiction novels. From Enchantress to Golden Age and A Girl From Nowhere, James has published eleven novels that transport readers to vivid worlds filled with epic adventures and timeless romance.
With over a million copies sold, James has a massive following in North America, the United Kingdom, Australia, and even places as far-reaching as South Africa, Japan, India, and Brazil. His readership spans from teenagers to octogenarians, proving that his books have a universal appeal.
James spent his childhood in the Bay of Islands, New Zealand, an area known for its stunning natural beauty. He completed his education in Brisbane, Australia, before moving to London to pursue his writing career.
He has been writing full-time since his thirties and previously worked as a software developer.
When he’s not writing, James splits his time between London and Australia’s Sunshine Coast, where he resides with his wife and daughter.
Golden Age is a fantasy novel by James Maxwell, first published on May 1st, 2016. The book explores themes of power, betrayal, and redemption, set in a magical world of dragons, sorcery, and epic battles.
Maxwell is an Australian author who has written several bestselling series in the science fiction and fantasy genres. Golden Age belongs to the Shifting Tides series, a collection of novels that follow the journey of two siblings, Chloe and Jack, as they discover their magical abilities and face a rising evil that threatens to engulf their world.
Set in a medieval-inspired realm called Mytica, Golden Age features a rich world-building that immerses the reader in a complex society of kingdoms, alliances, and rivalries. The plot follows Chloe and Jack as they experience the awakening of their powers and join forces with a band of warriors to resist the tyranny of the Blood Mage, a cruel ruler who seeks to enslave the people through his dark magic.
The characters are well-drawn and relatable, with personal struggles and motivations that add depth to the narrative. Chloe is a fierce and determined heroine who struggles with self-doubt and her forbidden love for a prince, while Jack is a conflicted hero who must confront his past to save his future.
The other protagonists, including a dragon, a bard, and a healer, all have distinct personalities and arcs that contribute to the overall conflict. The writing style of Golden Age is elegant and evocative, with vivid descriptions and smooth dialogues that draw the reader into the story.
Maxwell’s prose is not overly complicated, yet it conveys a sense of grandeur and mystery appropriate to the high fantasy genre. The pacing of the narrative is well-balanced, with a steady build-up of tension and action that culminates in a thrilling showdown between the heroes and the villains.
The world-building is immersive and imaginative, with a creative blend of magic, myth, and medieval history that adds richness and detail to the story. The strengths of Golden Age lie in its engaging characters, vivid world-building, and well-crafted plot.
The book is a great addition to the fantasy genre, offering a balanced mix of adventure, romance, and magic that appeals to both young adult and adult readers. The themes of power and oppression are timely and resonant, reminding us of the struggles of our own world while providing an escape into a fantastic realm.
The book also benefits from being part of a series, which allows for a deeper exploration of the characters and the world-building. However, Golden Age also has some flaws and limitations.
The book follows some familiar tropes and cliches of the fantasy genre, such as the chosen one, the mentor figure, and the dark lord. While the execution of these elements is skillful and entertaining, some readers may find them predictable or derivative.
Additionally, some minor characters and subplots could have been developed further, adding to the complexity and richness of the story. Overall, Golden Age is a highly recommended book for fans of fantasy and adventure.
Its imaginative world-building, engaging characters, and well-crafted plot make it a compelling read that will entertain and inspire. The book showcases the talent of James Maxwell as a skilled storyteller and promises more exciting journeys in the Shifting Tides series.
The Washington Post gives Golden Age 4 out of 5 stars.