Hold onto your hearts, guys, because Victoria Aveyard is about to crush them—in the best way possible. In Glass Sword, we get a heroine that’s unlike any we’ve ever seen before, and it’s so perfect and thrilling and heart-stopping you should go read it, like, now.
Mare Barrow is gone. Once upon a time, she was just a common Red girl from the Stilts, stealing to survive and hoping she could find a way to avoid being conscripted into her country’s never-ending war. But a near-tragic accident reveals she’s not just a Red girl. She also has the power of one of the Silver elite: the ability to control lightning.
In Red Queen, Mare was replaced with Mareena, a “lost” Silver princess—a fake identity to cover up the impossibility of her Red-blooded powers and stop her secret from causing ripples in the carefully balanced political system that keeps the Reds subservient to the Silvers. And in between avoiding the mind-controlling Queen Elara, dealing with her conflicting feelings for both Prince Cal and her actual betrothed, his brother, Prince Maven, not to mention aiding the Scarlet Guard (a rebel society bent on overthrowing the government), Mare is forced to hide her rebellious heart behind this false creation.
Then came the shock. Mare learned the hard way that her mentor was right: Anyone can betray anyone. With the King dead and the entire country believing she and Prince Cal are to blame, Mare has no choice but to let herself be rescued by the Scarlet Guard, bringing Cal along as a sort-of prisoner, a Silver out of place among the Reds he used to rule.
But things in the Scarlet Guard are not what they seem. The weak facade hides a deeper, far-reaching conspiracy that spans kingdoms and blood, and Mare is only just beginning to discover all of its facets. But gone is the Mare who blindly took people at their word—with the real motives and leadership of the Scarlet Guard impossible to discern, Mare is not about to allow herself to be controlled by an invisible hand once again.
So she disappears, taking Cal, former Captain Farley, and her brother with her on her quest to find and rescue all of the other Red-and-Silver blooded people like herself, and to turn them into a powerful army. With her quest comes great responsibility: For better or worse, Mare, for the first time in her life, is in control. She is fierce, she is resilient, she is cold and unflinching and willing to do what must be done. She knows what her heart wants, but she is not bound to it, and her ability to turn off her emotions for the good of the cause makes her strong—strong, but difficult to love.
The consequences of her actions are deadly. They have to be deadly, because Mare can’t end this war without digging a few graves—maybe even her own. But being the person who makes the call between life and death, no matter how necessary, transforms her, and the Mare that comes out the other side is unlike any of the versions we’ve seen before.
Glass Sword succeeds where so many second novels in a trilogy fall apart. It’s full of emotion and character development and introspection, but Aveyard balances it with the perfect amount of action and suspense to keep the momentum building and the pages turning.
You loved Mare when she was open and warm, you admired her when she was proud and brave, and you wanted to hold her when she was weak and broken. But how will you feel about the Mare you find at the end of Glass Sword? You’ve only got one choice: read it and find out. (And then hold your breath until book three comes out in 2017, because really. Really. Victoria Aveyard might be the death of us.)
Are you ready for the emotional upheaval that is Glass Sword?