Book Review: Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard

Members of the Scarlet Guard, it’s finally time to learn the next part of Mare’s story. Glass Sword is the much anticipated sequel to New York Times bestselling Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard, a story of magic, strength, power, and betrayal.

23174274Mare Barrow’s blood is red—the color of common folk—but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control.

The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince—the friend—who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.

Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors.

But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat.

Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever? (Synopsis from Goodreads)

***If you need a refresher of everything that happened in Red Queen, check out this awesome recap from Epic Reads***

I was still reeling from the ending of Red Queen when I opened Glass Sword and – wow – was I unprepared!

Glass Sword picks up right where Red Queen left off, immediately after Mare and Cal have been rescued from the Bowl of Bones. The safety of the Scarlet Guard doesn’t last long though, and soon Mare, Cal, Farley, and Shade are thrust back into action against Maven and his army of Silvers from the High Houses. Once they manage to truly get away from Maven’s wrath (for the time being) Aveyard introduces us to more of the Scarlet Guard and the world of the rebellion. But truthfully, Glass Sword is Mare’s story: her journey to fully harness and own her power; her attempts to find the other people like her; her efforts to make her mark on the rebellion; her hopes, dreams, and nightmares that come from the horrors she’s been through.

Victoria Aveyard once again shows her talent for world building in Glass Sword. One of the things that struck me most while reading was how clearly I could visualize every moment and location. The description is beautiful and very well done. Aveyard’s background in screenwriting definitely shines through in the cinematic world she continues to build.

Mare spends most of Glass Sword on her mission to rescue the other Reds who have Silver powers and trying to figure out who she is as a person on the side. Her power definitely goes to her head a little and in her quest for victory, she becomes so set on her goal that she loses some of the kindness and selflessness that makes her Mare in the process. By the end of the book, she’s not a character I’m particularly fond of and I’m really hoping for some character development over the last two books. I do think this will come though, especially because Cal and Kilorn (and SPOILER: Julian) see her flaws and are encouraging her to grow as a person.

Glass Sword also brings new developments for Mare and her relationships. Cal is still struggling with the turn his life has taken and where his allegiances should lie. The Scarlet Guard is larger and more complex than previously known. Farley’s backstory is revealed and her storyline will make you both laugh and cry. There are deaths and new discoveries and basically, no one is safe. There is hope though – a favorite character reappears and will surely be impactful in book three, which is needed after how Glass Sword ends.

If you (and your emotions) were blown away at the ending of Red Queen like mine were, be prepared for more of that in Glass Sword. Aveyard also excels at twists and turns that catch you by surprise and betrayal as an underlying theme will keep you on your toes. Mare spends the majority of the book being suspicious of everyone – she’s been betrayed far too many times already in her 17 years – and her suspicion carries over to the reader as well. I spent most of the book with absolutely no idea of who was trustworthy and to be honest, I still am not 100% sure, especially with the characters I want to trust most.

Glass Sword is a sequel that will keep you on your toes up to the very last page. With all of the questions that get answered, even more new one are asked. It’s not a perfect book but the cinematic nature of the story draws you in and captivates the reader, grabbing your emotions along the way. The ending will have you clamoring for more but something tells me that Aveyard will keep readers guessing up to the very last page of our Red Queen’s story.

And don’t forget: “anyone can betray anyone.”

Rating: 8/10

Lauren is a 20-year-old student living in Northern Virginia. She loves to read YA books and watch movies. Lauren is passionate about many things, but reading has always been a huge part of her life. Ever since she first learned to read, her parents have always had to pry books out of her hands when it’s time for other commitments. Lauren loves everything from The Hunger Games and Divergent, to Percy Jackson, mysteries like State of the Onion, and other YA books, like The Fault in Our Stars, and is always eager to try a new book, author, or series. She also loves music, public health, Harry Potter, and the Washington Capitals. Follow her on Twitter: @LWengrovitz.