“As more and more details become clearer, my excitement grew, and it was all I could do not to shout it to the heavens.”
This is the first novel I have read by Richelle Mead, and I didn’t like it very much. I really enjoyed The Selection series by Kiera Cass, so I thought I’d love this book, too, based on its Goodreads description, which sounded quite similar to that of The Selection. However, I was wrong; there are many differences between The Selection and The Glittering Court. Although both contain a group of young women vying to marry a man of asset, The Selection takes place in the future, whereas The Glittering Court occurs in a fantasy land called Osfrid (which I liked because it was outside of my comfort zone of contemporary YA). Also, while The Selection was somewhat fast-paced, The Glittering Court dragged on. The novel is 400 pages long (of small-faced type), and covers unnecessary, banal details, especially regarding clothing and jewelry.
Even without comparing The Glittering Court to The Selection, the novel was unsatisfying. The beginning of the novel was humorous, with the protagonist’s – Adelaide’s – struggle to adapt to the life of a maid after living in luxury as a countess. However, this was quickly lost as the novel undertook a much more serious tone. The villains in the story were too insecure and power-hungry, and the protagonist’s – Adelaide’s – best friends (Tamsin and Mira) were too elusive to capture the reader’s heart. I also did not enjoy the storyline, which portrayed almost all the female characters as gold-diggers. The only bearable character in the novel was Cedric, who is a polite, compassionate young man who attempts to right the wrongs of his world and stand up for what he believes in.
Another significant flaw in the novel is a lack of suspense. Mead attempts to create drama and conflict, but the plot was so predictable that the reader already knows what will happen next. The plot twists were unoriginal, and the story ended just the way I imagined it would. Tamsin’s and Mira’s stories are incomplete at the end of the novel, and each girl’s perspective is revealed in the next two novels of the trilogy, whose release dates are yet to be announced. Will I read the next two books in the series? Most likely, because
- When I commit, I commit. I always finish an entire series even if I don’t like it.
- I’m curious as to what Mira was hiding and Tamsin kept saying she has to lose.
Overall, The Glittering Court wasn’t executed in the best way, but I’d recommend it to fans of The Selection series who simply want more, or readers who enjoy a historical fiction and fantasy hybrid, for the setting was definitely the best part about the novel. I hope the next two books in the series are more engaging and exhilarating.