Publication: April 5, 2016, by Razorbill
Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Fantasy, Romance
Big and sweeping, spanning from the refined palaces of Osfrid to the gold dust and untamed forests of Adoria, The Glittering Court tells the story of Adelaide, an Osfridian countess who poses as her servant to escape an arranged marriage and start a new life in Adoria, the New World. But to do that, she must join the Glittering Court.
Both a school and a business venture, the Glittering Court is designed to transform impoverished girls into upper-class ladies who appear destined for powerful and wealthy marriages in the New World. Adelaide naturally excels in her training, and even makes a few friends: the fiery former laundress Tamsin and the beautiful Sirminican refugee Mira. She manages to keep her true identity hidden from all but one: the intriguing Cedric Thorn, son of the wealthy proprietor of the Glittering Court.
When Adelaide discovers that Cedric is hiding a dangerous secret of his own, together they hatch a scheme to make the best of Adelaide’s deception. Complications soon arise—first as they cross the treacherous seas from Osfrid to Adoria, and then when Adelaide catches the attention of a powerful governor.
But no complication will prove quite as daunting as the potent attraction simmering between Adelaide and Cedric. An attraction that, if acted on, would scandalize the Glittering Court and make them both outcasts in wild, vastly uncharted lands…
It has literally been ages since the last time I have picked up something written by the fabulous Richelle Mead. That depresses me. It makes me feel like I have no more connection to fantasy/romance novels, and that the memories I have of reading Vampire Academy, falling in love with Dimitri and Rose, and believing that fantasy, mythical creatures and forces do exist are all gone. Away. Flooded. When I discovered that I had the chance to read and review Richelle's newest stellar story, The Glittering Court, which did sound like Kiera Cass' The Selection if I do say so myself, I JUMPED OFF A CLIFF. No seriously. Do you want to know what I really did? I jumped off the last step in my house like it was a cliff or Mount Everest or something in that context. This book made me so happy.
Before I get to anything, you must prepare yourself a survival kit for this story. This survival kit will consist of kleenexes, awake-pills and your phone/computer so you could update your Goodreads. Why? Kleenexes are for the feels that hit you in the end when we read two soulful letters from Adelaide's friends: Tamsin and Mira. LETTERS ARE BEAUTIFUL. WHEREFORE DO LADS AND GALS NOT SEEK TO WRITE THEM ANYMORE? The awakening pills are for the boredom that strikes around the beginning half of the story, around the first hundred pages when readers really try to see what this is actually about, and the phone because you'll be shocked with the plot twists and romance. I needed to regurgitate this story to the world. I need to. Now.
The Glittering Court is basically the opposite of what a typical fantasy novel written by the fantasy-author-goddesses like Richelle Mead and Leigh Bardugo would normally be like. THIS WAS RICH, VERY LUXURIOUS AND MOVING. I'm moved by Adelaide's character and the world that Mead created for her characters to live and move around in. THIS IS THE KIND OF FANTASY I ADORE.
Listen: I am not the kind of readers who goes for books about dragons or ogres. I love fantasy with a twist, particularly romance without all of the heirs and bloodlines. (What a funny pun, if you Richelle Mead fans know what I mean!)
"I couldn't even say who started the kissing then. Maybe there was no true start. Maybe it was just a continuation of what we'd begun that night among the stars. Wrapped in his arms, wrapped in him, I couldn't believe I'd somehow gone the last week without touching him. Really touching him—not those stolen brushes of fingertips and legs. I had danced with dozens of men in this month and never felt a flicker of what I felt when Cedric simply looked at me." (240)
Aw. Cedric and Adelaide are the most adorable couple ever. THEY ARE MY OTP. This is definitely like your Bachelor kind of plot. We have many men who are just dying to get engaged with a pretty, peppy young woman like Adelaide, and of course, there are heirs and those kinds of things mixed in within, but the romance definitely is the key part for me.
The Glittering Court kind of made my life so much better. I mean—hey. There were boring parts, but everything made so much sense and was so entertaining. I love this one, and I am so excited to continue the series and see Adelaide's adventures with Cedric next. *winks* Girl power between friendships, romance and a gorgeous plot—what else do we possibly need?
*A review copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for a honest review. Thank you so much!*