Friday, June 25, 2010

Review: Spy Glass

Synopsis: An undercover mission leads to danger, adventure and an impossible choice. After siphoning her own blood magic in the showdown at Hubal, Opal Cowan has lost her powers. She can no longer create glass magic. More, she's immune to the effects of magic. Opal is now an outsider looking in, spying through the glass on those with the powers she once had, powers that make a difference in the world. Until spying through the glass becomes her new power. Suddenly, the beautiful pieces she makes flash in the presence of magic. And then she discovers that someone has stolen some of her blood - and that finding it might let her regain her powers. Or know it could be they are lost forever.

My Review: You all know how much of a fangirl I am for anything Maria V. Syder writes. Spy Glass was no exception!  When I saw this on NetGalley I literally squealed.  Loudly.  And I may or may not have scared the hell out of my cat... The conclusion to Sea Glass left me so on edge and begging for more that I couldn't wait to dive into Spy Glass.  I even went back and re-read the first two so that I'd have the story fresh in my mind.  I just fell in love with these books all over again.  It's going to be SO HARD to not spoil anything so mostly I'm just going to succumb to my utter fan-girlism and talk about characters and my loves of the book. 

Opal has just made the ultimate sacrifice.  In order to save those she loved and all of Sitia from the power hungry Warpers, Opal has drained herself of all of her magic.  However, Opal doesn't just become a regular old citizen.  She is now immune to magic, much like Valek.  Without her glass magic, Opal feels like she has lost an essential part of her.  Being able to feel magic all around her, but not access it, is a new type of torture for Opal.  She can't even bring herself to work with glass, an unpleasant reminder of what she has lost.  At the beginning of the story, I admit it, I was rather annoyed with Opal.  She was moping, no denying it, and it kind of annoyed me.  Thank goodness her moping lasted for about ten pages and then she spurred herself into action.  After a rather surprising visit from Valek, who is "practically family" as Opal's mother puts it, Opal realizes that her blood is still out there and that there is a chance for her to reclaim her magic.  Her realization of course sparks off another whirl wind adventure. 

I greatly admire Opal's character.  She is so caring towards others and has such a tender heart that I can't help but hold her in awe.  She is not the type of person to just sit back and watch the people she cares about be hurt.  She takes matters into her own hands and DOES something about it.  Opal makes mistakes, just like the rest of us, and it humanizes her.  She's not super woman and definitely not a Damsel in Distress, though Janco's always pleased to answer any DID calls.  ^.^  At the end of Sea Glass I just KNEW she was going to get involved in spying.  And of course I was right, because I always am.  *grins*  And of course who better to teach her all the tricks of the trade?  Valek of course!  Yes I am pleased to say that Valek makes many appearances in Spy Glass.  As well as Janco and Ari.  Those two are possibly the best duo ever.  Opal spends grueling months training with Valek, learning to hide her emotions, read others, and of course scaling walls.  While training with Valek, Opal takes up glass making again.  She delights in being able to blow glass for the first time in her life, and her skills grow quickly. 

While in Fulgor, Opal visits Devlen in prison.  Devlen, was a blood magic driven Warper who seduced and tortured Opal, has made a commitment to change.  In Sea Glass, Opal thought the "reformed man" was just an act and didn't trust Devlen at all.  Even when Devlen saved her life and helped her escape she still had her doubts, reasoning that he had to have some ulterior motive.   That all changes when Devlen willingly goes to jail.  Yelena purged him of blood magic and examined his soul and even vouched for him.  He is willing to pay for his past crimes and the atrocities he committed and is nothing but honest with Opal.  He admits that while he was pretending to be Ulrick, he fell in love with Opal and wants nothing more than to gain her friendship and trust.  He doesn't expect to be forgiven and it just makes it all the more endearing to me.  Opal soon realizes that she has feelings for Devlen that she can't rationalize away.  One of the sweetest moments in the book was when Devlen said that all he hoped for after he was released was to be with Opal.  No matter what she chose to do, he would always be content to be with her.  The most touching moment in the whole book was when the meaning to the Ixian battle ruins on Opals switchblade was revealed.  I offer my heart, I entrust my soul, and give my life for you. Now for the life of me I cannot remember WHO gave Opal her switchblade or who carved the ruins in it, but I have a feeling it was Devlen.  (If you know, please tell me, cuz it's driving me crazy!)

One of the things I love about Maria V. Snyder is that she keeps the pace of the story all the way through the book.  It's always one thing after another. Another problem arises and dash!  Off to fix it.  Nothing plays out nicely and there are always unexpected surprises.  I have to say that the last 70 or so pages had me hunched over my desk, clutching the mouse, and staring wide eyed at my computer.  I have never felt more horrified while reading a book.  I'm pretty sure I gasped out loud about 7 times. It just kept going from bad to worse.  It was terrifying to say the least.  Just thinking about the atrocities that were planned makes me shudder.  It was so incredibly sick and twisted that I felt real hate towards some characters.   Usually when bad things happen towards the end of a book I'm just like "Ya everything's going to turn out okay."  I severely doubted that would be the case towards the end of Spy Glass.  I was just waiting for someone to die.  I was that on edge.  Man... I can barely talk about it.  I don't think I have ever been that on edge while reading a book.  Intense is the only possible way I can think of to describe it. 

Don't worry!  It doesn't end with a cliff hanger.  O.O God I would have died!  *shudders*  Ah that is just too horrible to even think about.  To say I absolutely loved it would be an understatement.  Opals character grew so much and her relationship with Devlen as well.  The plot had me excited and on edge the entire time and the horrifying ending was worth it.  I am happy to report Spy Glass  is yet another amazing novel from Maria V. Snyder! 


Felicia the Geeky Blogger said...

So you liked it? I am a little unclear about that?

Just kidding! Great Review--I love that you got it from Net Galley too!

JT said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
JT said...

Yes, the switchblade was from Devlen. Nice review! I'm hoping for an Opal and Devlen relationship. Kade is a very nice guy but he never seems to be around. Hope to read much of Devlen.