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I Spy a Great Teen Fantasy Novel

Time is flying by- and so have all the book release dates I’ve been waiting on for months. Out of my list of about 12 novels, I was most excited for Spy Glass by Maria V. Snyder.

Time is flying by- it's almost October!! Also, meet Punky.

Time is flying by- it's almost October!! Also, meet Punky.

Although I really enjoyed her debut series (Poison Study, Fire Study, Magic Study), by the third novel, I was skipping pages and events that didn’t connect together just to get to the good parts (the romance, of course). The Glass series is amazing and, to me, has very few flaws.

In the third and final book of the series,  Spy Glass, Opal Cowan faces down the last of the warped blood magicians after her magic. She is a former magician whose powers were siphoned away after she saved her friends from dying and loosing their own magic. In this last novel, I wasn’t too worried about Opal because she’s already been through so much- kidnapped several times by crazed magicians, figured out her feelings for several guys to gained self-esteem and confidence in herself.

Opal is a character that truly grows and develops. When you meet Opal in the first novel, she is timid and feels completely useless. By the end of Spy Glass, she’s gained the maturity and wisdom learned from situations where she refuses to be a victim and where she is forced to rely on her own skills.

Besides meeting my basic needs of action, romance and magic, Spy Glass provides a very satisfying conclusion to the whole series. There are more plot twists and suspenseful action scenes than you can shake a stick at- but if they all didn’t result in some type of closure that ties all the novels together then it would just be a waste.

With really great books, there’s always some intangible element that’s personal and keeps you coming back. The feeling that you really connected with something in a novel- a something that you don’t always feel with every book you pick up. For me, I connected with Opal’s gradual development of confidence and self-worth. Getting over fears that you’re not good enough is a long and difficult journey, but Snyder does a great job of making the process believable and relatable.

Plus- the romance part of this series keeps you guessing until the last book. That is a tough thing do, too. The who-loves-who part of the Glass books is a complement to the novels and not a hindrance. It does not override the main story but helps hold everything together. I will just say that I was very happy with how everything turned out 😉

The magic aspect of this novel is so unique. In the Glass series, magic is like a blanket over the world and only those with the gift of touching this blanket can pull a thread of magic. Opal’s particular gift is to infuse magic into glass and use that glass to relay messages from one magician to another.

The art of glass making that is described in the book is interesting and detailed without becoming routine or mundane as its described often throughout all of the novels. I was really interested in this concept and appreciated Opal’s special connection to this process- how it reminded her of her family and friends.

Things I didn’t like: I read Spy Glass in two days and the series is over forever. 🙁 Also, that I can’t own a cool Sanseed horse in real life. Extra sadness.

Overall, Synder has made a very addicting series with substance. Young girls can read these novels and actually take something away from it- other than finally choosing whether to be on Team Edward or Team Jacob.

About Lisa Parkin

I'm a hardcore lover of young adult fiction and have been reviewing books since 2011. Other interests include Downton Abbey, heat lightning storms, Harry Potter land and (begrudingly) one orange tabby.
  • Hey! I just discovered your blog. I love the design. I just started the Hollow Kingdom Trilogy. Have you read them? I had a good recommendation and so far I’m loving them!

  • Lisa

    Hi Deborah!

    Thanks! Tim helped me out A LOT with figuring out how to get this layout up and running! I haven’t read them, but I will def check them out now! I love it when you find a new book series- it’s such a happy feeling, haha

    Thanks for your comment!

  • Pingback: Romance and Reading | Read. Breathe. Relax. | Fantasy and YA Reviews()

  • I loved the Study Series. Yelena was a totally empowering kick-ass female protagonist. I thoroughly enjoyed her journey and her eventual pairing with Valek (aren’t assassin’s yummy?), the romance aspect of the book was perfect in that it added spice but didn’t overwhelm the story. On the other hand I really could not stand Opal Cowan, she was annoying, and amazingly passive.I honestly think she has a defective memory, the girl kept making the same mistakes over and over! How many times must you be attacked alone before you realize that being alone isn’t so smart?. The only reason I was able to keep reading was because of the tantalizing glimpses of characters from the Study Series (here’s looking at you Fisk!). I’m glad I plowed through though because the last book finally sold me on Opal Cowan who really came into her own. Opal was always worthy of admiration but because she never believed it, I too had a hard time looking at her objectively. All she could see were her flaws and because it’s her narrative (and I’m a speed reader) that’s all I was able to see. It is only in her scenes with Devlen do we see how much she’s grown. I will admit that I was a little grossed out when she chose to be with Devlen, not that Devlen didn’t turn out to be a great character but it just seemed a little sick. I will say that I much preferred him to the storm dancer (whose name I don’t remember…which says a lot about him personality-wise).

    When it comes to Devlen I really am stumped. Towards the end he seemed truly, madly, (almost ridiculously) devoted to Opal. From what I understand he LIVES to PLEASE her….is that romantic or needlessly clingy? I am leaning towards clingy but at the same time I am well aware of their previous history and it seems like he owes her BIG TIME. So ultimately it seems alright but at the same time, should his past crimes haunt him forever? and being with Opal how could they not?. I personally think that both characters deserve better than to have history slapping them in the face every time they wake up, open their eyes and glance at the person next to them. It’s admirable that Opal managed to forgive Devlen but it’s still super weird.

    PS: I’m loving this blog!
    PPS: his name was kade! I remember!