Review 228. Lori M. Lee – Gates of thread and stone.

17904985Title: Gates of thread and stone.
Author: Lori M. Lee.
Pages: 335.
Published: August 5th 2014 by Skyscape.
Sort: Part 1. Gates of thread and stone.
Source: Netgalley and publisher, thanks!
In the Labyrinth, we had a saying: keep silent, keep still, keep safe.
In a city of walls and secrets, where only one man is supposed to possess magic, seventeen-year-old Kai struggles to keep hidden her own secret—she can manipulate the threads of time. When Kai was eight, she was found by Reev on the riverbank, and her “brother” has taken care of her ever since. Kai doesn’t know where her ability comes from—or where she came from. All that matters is that she and Reev stay together, and maybe one day move out of the freight container they call home, away from the metal walls of the Labyrinth. Kai’s only friend is Avan, the shopkeeper’s son with the scandalous reputation that both frightens and intrigues her. Then Reev disappears. When keeping silent and safe means losing him forever, Kai vows to do whatever it takes to find him. She will leave the only home she’s ever known and risk getting caught up in a revolution centuries in the making. But to save Reev, Kai must unravel the threads of her past and face shocking truths about her brother, her friendship with Avan, and her unique power.

I liked it. I didn’t fall in love with it the way I thought I would, but it’s a very solid story that promise something good for the sequels.

Kai’s brother Reev disappears and she is willing to do anything to get him back: even if that means she has to look for the Black Rider, a feared and mysterious man. Together with her youth friend Avan, a guy she secretly fancies, she hunts him down and he has to face some shocking truths about herself.

I liked the writing-style. It’s fast-paced and it made me feel connected with the story. It didn’t take much time before I finished the book and that also has to do with the interesting plot. Kai has a special ability: she can manipulate the threads of time. Nobody can know she is capable of doing so, because she would be hunted down and put to death. Her gift is quite interesting, because she can slow time down in dangerous situations.

There is only person who knows about her power and that is her brother Reev, who found her when she was a baby. I love how the author showed that you don’t have to share blood to be family. Reev and Kai are close and their relationship was one of the highlights of this story. It's obvious they are willing to do anything to keep each other save and that can be tough. They live in one of the poor parts of the city, which is made out of trash in the shape of a labyrinth.

It’s understandable that Kai doesn’t hesitate for one moment when her brother doesn’t return home. Without second thoughts she makes up her mind about finding him, no matter the cost. Such loyalty always makes me admire a character and Kai is an easy character to appreciate. She is clever and strong. Nobody can stop her and I liked her insecurity when it comes to Avan, although I wasn’t a complete fan of him. There was something about him that prevented me from completely liking him. He is supportive of her and the fact he stays with her, no matter how dangerous the situation is, made him acceptable.

The story took an interesting turn towards the ending. Her time with the Black Rider and the way we are presented with information about her brothers disappearing is nicely done. The book gets a mythological touch and that worked really well. I can’t wait to see what this will mean for the sequel!


  1. The ending (and for ending I mean just the last few pages) were a bit off for me but I loved the book so much! I have the 2nd one already, hope I'll get to it soon!! *-*

    Ps. I got Uprooted! Thank you so so much!!! <3

  2. Looks like you had a bit more luck with this one than I did, which makes me happy :) Like you, I thought the premise was really cool, Kai's abilities were a definite plus and easily the reason that I craved getting my hands on this one to begin with^^ I can't wait to hear about how you'll make out with the sequel. If you love it it might just convince me to continue the series myself! Lovely review, as usual! xx

  3. This cover is SO eye catching! It definitely draws me in! I like how you said you liked, but didn't LOVE, this one. I feel like that's often the case with me and I have a hard time putting it into words - but you do it so well!

  4. The cover is gorgeous! I want to read this now! :) The relationship between Kai and Reev seems really good in the book, and like you, I love the fact that you don't have to share blood to be family in this book :) I might read this soon! Thanks for the review Mel!

    Jillian @ Jillian's Books

  5. I remember seeing the cover of this one and thinking it looked pretty enough to check out - and now you've reminded me I need to read it. Your review makes me interested, even though I might not love it to death. It's great that there's a wonderful familial relationship and I'm curious about that turn near the end!

  6. Aw! I consider a lot of my friends to be "family," so it's lovely that Kai and Reev aren't blood related but are still extremely close. I get what you mean about love interests being just "acceptable." Sometimes they're nice and have really good qualities, but they're just missing that something that could potentially turn them into an amazing character.

    Fantastic review, Mel! <3

  7. I'm a cover snob, so pretty much the moment I saw that cover, I knew I wanted to read this one. (That, and the premise sounds amazing.) To be honest I've heard some mixed things when it comes to this one--but I think I might enjoy. And well, who doesn't love fast-paced stories :)

  8. Ah, I remember stumbling across this last year on Goodreads and was instantly in love with the cover! I'm glad that this wasn't one of those books with a pretty cover and a bad story, because the concept sounds really cool.

    Aw, the relationship between Kai and Reev is so sweet. We already don't get much of the family in fantasy/paranormal books such as this, and the fact that the both of them aren't even blood-related makes things all the more heartwarming! Kai also sounds like both a brave but very vulnerable heroine, which is always a good thing. And lol, I'm relieved that the romance, while not amazing, wasn't too bad either.

    Mythological touch, too? This is getting interesting! Most of the time mythological aspects don't work that well (unless the author is Rick Riordan, but I'm biased), so definitely refreshing that it tied in well with the story here. Glad you enjoyed this, Mel, and wonderful review as always!

  9. Stunning review Mel. <3 I'm so glad you liked this one :) But aw, sorry you didn't love it. I.. did not like it much at all, sadly :( But love reading your thoughts about it. <3 But aw, best of luck with the sequel :) I shall not read it, sigh, because love triangle :( but so so curious to see what you think of it :D Thank you for sharing sweetie. <3

  10. I have heard mainly mixed reviews about this novel, but seems like you enjoyed it quite a lot. I still want to give it a try though, Wonderful review Mel <3 Benish | Feminist Reflections

  11. I read this book some time back and really enjoyed it as well! I really loved how descriptive the writing was and Kai's beautiful relationship with Reev.
    Great review Mel!

  12. I'm glad you liked this one Mel - it definitely sounds like a ME book and I hope to read it soon! I like how you mention this book stresses that you don't need to share blood to be family because I believe this wholeheartedly. Great review!

  13. I've seen this around but never actually gotten around to reading what it's actually about, haha! And I haven't read a review, either.

    I must say that I quite like the sound of this! And its gorgeous cover isn't deterring me, either.

    I love it when books highlight that sometimes you CAN choose family, and those you care about most, and who care about you most don't always share the same DNA.

    It's a shame that the love interest wasn't up to standard, but maybe he'll have some growth in the next book :)

    Lovely review as always, Mel <3

  14. I'm so glad you liked this one! It's been on TBR for ages -- I actually read a few chapters a while ago and thought it was super interesting + well-written. It looks like I should really get back to it. Great review!


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