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Thursday, 16 December 2010

Review: Sea Glass

Author: Maris V. Snyder
Release date: 22nd January 2010
Genre: Fantasy / Adult
Target audience: Adult / YA Cross-over
UK Publisher: Mira Books

Summary from Goodreads:
Like the colorful pieces of sea glass washed up on shore, Opal has weathered rough waters and twisting currents. But instead of finding a tranquil eddy, Opal is caught in a riptide. Her unique glass messengers which allow instant communication over vast distances have become a vital part of Sitian society. Once used solely by the Councilors and magicians, other powerful factions are now vying for control. Control of the messengers equals control of Sitia. Unfortunately that also means control of Opal.

Storm Glass (Opal Cowan Book 1) Review here

Sea Glass (Opal Cowan Triology Book 2)

When I started reading Sea Glass, I realised that I had made a fatal error. I really needed to re-read Storm Glass to understand the book fully. It had been nearly a year since I read the first book in the Opal Cowan series and I know that I really enjoyed it. The trouble was I couldn't remember all of the characters. As this is high fantasy, I also had trouble remembering the important aspects of the world building.

For the first one hundred pages, I felt lost and bewildered about the plot, the characters, the setting. It was my fault. If I wasn't a blogger and under a schedule, I would have re-read the first book and then started this one. It just goes to show much blogging has changed the way I read and it is not always to my benefit.

Once I was beyond the first one hundred pages, things started to wake up in my memory and by the half way point, I was completely absorbed in the story and couldn't wait to turn the page.

This review cannot really be a review because even now I cannot remember what happened in the beginning. I do know that Opal's psyche takes a dark and angry twist in Sea Glass. She is no longer the innocent novice magician of the first book. The only discoveries in this book lead her to question the motives of her friends, her fellow magicians and the nature of her powers. She takes unnessary risks and cannot even trust her own judement. It is great character development.

Apart from my shockingly poor memory, there was one other thing that irritated me while reading this book. I felt that there was too much travel from one place to another. You know how being in a car journey is completely boring? Well so is reading about someone riding a horse somewhere, especially when it is a recurring part of the story. Opal is taken hostage here, gets dragged to prison here, escapes here etc. This is something that I find irritates me in many books. But in this novel, it was also the introduction of obstacle after obstacle.

I wanted to spend more time with Opal as a free magician exploring her magical potential and less time with her being tortured, captured and generally being abused.

Having said all that, the opposition, betrayals, problems are all part of the story and had me desperate to know what happened to Opal. The plot may have lots of "journeying" but it is also full of drama. It is so full of drama in fact, that as soon as I finished the book I started Spy Glass. I was desperate to find out what happened next. I am not one to make the same mistake twice. Can the same be said of Opal? You'll have to read the series to find out!


Melissa said...

I haven't started this series, but I've heard great things about it. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it. Brilliant review :)

Irena @ This Miss Loves to Read said...

I read your review for Storm Glass to get an idea about this seris - great review and what a fab premise! Now, although you forgot many things from the first book (which can be so irritating, can't it?), you still wrote a good, engaging review, so compliments for that. Travels in books irritate me too - when they happen too much. But apart from this, I like what I read in your review and I think this may just be a new series I'll simply have to start reading in the future.

Becky said...

Melissa, it is a great series. If you like fantasy, you should give it a go.

Irena, I think this is probably one of my worst reviews. I just couldn't remember enough of the beginning to even give a good summary. I hope I do better with Spy Glass.

cj'alhafiz said...

Hey Becky! Haha!! That's what happened when there's a long interval between the first book and the second of the series. Hahaa...

My latest review: HERE

Jesse Owen said...

I think it's still a good review :)

I made a slightly different mistake reading Spy Glass before I've read the other two, surprisingly after a good couple of chapters I was still able to follow it, but means I need to go back to Storm Glass and Sea Glass :D

Kat said...

I totally agree about the travelling in this book, it got quite repetitive after a while.
Glad you're enjoying the series, Maria is one of my favourite authors :)