Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Tremain's Book Corner: "Glass Sword" by Victoria Aveyard

Glass Sword (Red Queen #2)
Author: Victoria Aveyard
Reviewed By: Tremain Jackson, South Branch Manager
Personal Rating: 3.75 Stars

Book Summary: If there's one thing Mare Barrow knows, it's that she's different.
Mare's blood is red - the color of the common folk - but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control.

The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince - the friend - who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.  Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors.

But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat.

Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost  of rebellion?  Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?

Personal Review: After enjoying the first book in the series, I was certainly going to read the next, and I enjoyed it as much as I did the first.  Once again, it was a well-paced novel, and true to form, things were going to have to get darker in this enjoy, which made it even better for me.

The stakes are higher now, and there's a new level of games to play as the exploiting of the divide between the Reds and Silvers are beginning to reach critical mass.  New allegiances are being made, old enemies are gambling with their power, queens and kings are beginning to fall, and now the hunt is on for Mare to find others like her, in both classes, willing to fight for a change.

What I enjoyed about this story was Mare's development as a character.  She's much different than she was in the first book.  Now she's spent a considerable amount of time with the Silvers in their "high society," far from her days in the slums picking pockets to make a living for her family.  With that time, she's now been molded into something new.  She still remains the heroine we came to know from the first book, but now she's stronger, a little more selfish, braver, more cunning, and mastering her ability to maneuver through her new waters.  All in the same, she still feels that guilt from the past, trying to be who she needs to be without losing herself in the process.

Now, I did have a few problems with the book, but they're minor, including the introduction of the newbloods.  Sure, they're needed, but that brings about quite a number of new characters.  Some of them are memorable, others are not, but I found them distracting.  Additionally, as addressed before, Aveyard may not get lost in the building of her worlds, but it would be nice if she did occasionally.  Somethings the setting can be as important to the story as the protagonist, and you don't get much with this series.  In this entry, you are able to go to new cities, but it's nothing entirely special.

That being said, what was done right in the story was enough to make up for that.  There were some good twists and turns (some of which I didn't see coming) and the ending was good with a cliffhanger that will leave you wanting for the next book.

This entry was an electrifying sequel, pun completely intended (Mare's power is the ability to absorb and release electricity) that was good from start to finish.  It has action, intrigue, emotional drama, twists and turns, and so much more.  If you enjoy dystopian reads with people with superpowers too, this is certainly one you'll want to read, whether you're a teen or adult.  Just be sure to start with the first book in the series, Red Queen, because it's not a series to be read out of order.

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