Glass Series by Maria V Snyder, Part 1: Introduction to the books

The Glass series is a trilogy that I read one after another during a busy week of work, travel and interviews, so I didn’t have time to write individual reviews; thus I’m writing a three part series review.  I have a lot to say about these books and therefore I’m splitting things up to make it more manageable to read.

This first post is going to be a spoiler-free overview of the series.  The second part will be a spoiler-free review on the books, with some thoughts and comments I had while reading and after I was done everything.  The last post, which will likely be the longest post will have lots of spoilers.  There are some major plot points I want to discuss and analyse, some of which I had a number of issues with.  The things I want to discuss I cannot do without spoilers of some or all of the three books and they are too important to leave out of a discussion/analysis of this series.  Since not everyone likes to read spoilers, that is why I have decided to write it as a separate post and leave it up to you to decide if you want to spoil yourself.

So without further (and boring) ado, here are the books:

Book One:

Storm Glass by Maria V Snyder

Published May 2009

Publisher: MIRA Books

Pages: 488

Genera: Adult low fantasy (magic present but no other humanoid or mythical creatures)

My Rating: 4 stars

Read in under 36 hours


Book Two:

Sea Glass by Maria V Snyder

Published September 2009

Publisher: MIRA Books

Pages: 379

My Rating: 4 stars

Read in under 24 hours

Book Three:

Spy Glass by Maria V Synder

Published September 2010

Publisher: MIRA Books

Pages: 479

My Rating: 2 stars

Read in approximately 24 hours


Overview of the series:

This series follows 20 year old Opal Cowan, who is finishing off her last year as a student of magic at the Citadel in Sitia.  Opal is first introduced to reader’s of Maria V Snyder’s works in the Study Series, more specifically the last book Fire Study where Opal plays a large role in tying up the conflict of that series.  However, her peers are not that impressed.  Considered a ‘one trick magician’ by her peers, she is surprised when the Master Magicians have a mission where her skills as a glass blower and magician might be of use: the glass orbs of the Stormdancer clan are breaking and killing the magician trying to calm storms and bottle up their energy.  Opal knows glass, but does she know enough about magic to help the Stormdancers?

From this mission onward we follow Opal as she deals with many twists and turns and political snags in her life and as she discovers new aspects of her magic that she and all the ‘experts’ in magic have never seen before.  During the course of this series we get to see how Opal grows as a person as a consequence of her own actions and other’s fears.  

Note #1: While you can read these books without reading the Study Series (Maria V Snyder) there are a few events that occur in those books which are referred to in this series.  I my opinion it would help to have read those books and know the background of Opal and Sitia.  Also a large number of characters that appear in the Glass series overlap with the Study series and the full depth of characters is better having read the Study series.  

Note #2: these books are ADULT fantasy.  They contain adult material and triggering topics.

List of known triggers: rape, assault, violence, torture, kidnapping, child neglect (minor, occurs in third book and has happy ending).  I will be discussing a few of these in the third review post, but I will point out that triggers before I talk about them.



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