Gold in the Clouds - Hayden Thorne 3 1/2 - 4 Hearts

Review written for MM Good Book Reviews

Blythe is fifteen and his sister Molly has decided it is time for him to start work, turfed out of bed every morning at dawn to sell bread is not Blythe’s idea of a decent job, but Molly is insistent that Blythe sells the bread while she concentrates on baking cakes. Blythe wishes for an easier life and it isn’t helped by his layabout friend Jack and his sore feet, but letting Molly down isn’t an option if he wishes to keep his hearing and not be strung up by his sister. When Blythe meets Edrik, a well off boy, he is tempted by Jack’s dreams of luck.

This is a great young adult fantasy story that shows a lads changing views as he enters manhood and the hardships of adulthood. Blythe suddenly has to start bringing in the money when he turns fifteen, although he whines that he is too young his sister, Molly, points out that both herself and their brother, Bertie, both started work at fifteen. As Blythe reluctantly takes over the bread selling, which according to Blythe is a girl’s job, he still dreams of an easier life. Jack keeps trying to tempt him with doing nothing but hoping for luck. When Blythe meets Edrik he can’t understand why the other boy would be interested in him, he’s poor and Edrik’s family is rich.

Blythe is like so many other young adults in his town, he’s at the age where he should choose what he wants for a job but he wants to cling to the last vestige of childhood. Having a friend like Jack doesn’t help him, Jack believes in luck and that he doesn’t have to do anything and riches will fall in his lap, when Blythe is embarrassed in front of Edrik he is tempted by Jack’s offer of instant riches. Hayden Thorne has created a wonderful fantasy world where gossip is abound about fairy-tale horrors, a boy catches the eye of a rich boy and where a friend has his head in the clouds. Blythe is a wonderful character who is down to earth and cheeky, Jack is obnoxious, Molly is trying to keep her family going, and Bertie has really bad night gas and Edrik is sweet on Blythe.

I thought this story was vastly entertaining with its down to earth characters, with the simple dreams of the characters and with its gentle learning curve for Blythe. This story is all from Blythe’s perspective so we get the unfettered view of life from a fifteen year old boy with his hopes and dreams, but also with him learning that life isn’t perfect but you can be happy with what you have. Jack’s a character that does get up your nose, Edrik you don’t see very often but he is a lovely character who is super sweet on Blythe and what we see of Molly and Bertie is good.

I recommend this story to those that love fantasy, young adult, obnoxious boys, growing up, finding a sweetheart, a touch of adventure and a happy ending.