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Sunday, December 3, 2017

REVIEW: The Glass Spare by Lauren DeStefano @balzerandbray @LaurenDeStefano

The Glass Spare
by Lauren DeStefano
Balzer & Bray / HarperCollins


Thank you so much to HarperCollins / Balzer & Bray for this copy!

A banished princess.
A deadly curse.
A kingdom at war.

Wil Heidle, the only daughter of the king of the world’s wealthiest nation, has grown up in the shadows. Kept hidden from the world in order to serve as a spy for her father—whose obsession with building his empire is causing a war—Wil wants nothing more than to explore the world beyond her kingdom, if only her father would give her the chance.

Until one night Wil is attacked, and she discovers a dangerous secret. Her touch turns people into gemstone. At first Wil is horrified—but as she tests its limits, she’s drawn more and more to the strange and volatile ability. When it leads to tragedy, Wil is forced to face the destructive power within her and finally leave her home to seek the truth and a cure.

But finding the key to her redemption puts her in the path of a cursed prince who has his own ideas for what to do with her power.

With a world on the brink of war and a power of ultimate destruction, can Wil find a way to help the kingdom that’s turned its back on her, or will she betray her past and her family forever?

My Review:

This fantasy duology is a play off of the King Midas story.  Instead of her touch turning everything to gold, instead it turns them to gemstone.  The beginning of the book was great in world building and her relationships with her brothers and father.  A father who uses her.  Her brothers, two of them (Owen and Gerdie) who look after her and love her and the third (Braden) who clearly doesn't like any of his siblings and wants to be the next heir to the throne.  I would have loved to have seen more of these interactions and learn more of why Braden is the way that he is.  

Wil takes off and gets involved with the new characters that we are now introduced to:  Loom and his politically placed wife and her bastard son.  Here we get into your typical YA tropes of a love triangle (ish), girl trying to figure out a power that can be deadly, magic, so on and so forth.  Things I always love or I wouldn't read these types of books and let's face it, these are my guilty pleasures.  Somehow this didn't quite work as well for me as I had hoped it would.

I wish that there had been some more background on the mother, her OCD, love for her children over kingdom, etc.  As a duology, maybe we will get more of this background in the second and final book.  Will she figure out why she has this power?  Will she get back to Loom in time and which kingdom will she save, because surely she will save something right?

I did read a long passage the author put on Goodreads explaining where this book came from and why and that definitely made me feel a tad bit more for the book than I had before.

Overall, a decent fantasy book that I think will be hit or miss for readers.  I'm a bit torn down the middle as while there was a lot that I DID enjoy with this, I just... needed.... more.....


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