Thursday, October 12, 2017

Review: Midnight Jewel (The Glittering Court #2)

The Selection meets Reign in this dazzling trilogy of interwoven novels about three girls on a quest for freedom and true love from #1 internationally bestselling author Richelle Mead.

Midnight Jewel, by Richelle Mead, is the second installment in The Glittering Court series. Mirabel Vaina (henceforth Mira) is not like the other Glittering Court girls. She is a war refugee, cast out of her home country and thrust into another, where she has learned to fight against the many injustices around her. For some, the Glittering Court offers a chance at a life they’ve only ever dreamed of, one of luxury, glamour, and leisure. But for Mira, it’s simply a means to an end. She learns that her older brother, Lonzo, is a bondsman an ocean away. Seeking to reunite with her brother in the new world, she plans to earn off her marriage contract price, and finally be free.

Mira pitches herself as an asset to one of the passengers on board the ship: the sardonic and aloof Grant Elliot, whom she’s discovered is a spy for the prestigious McGraw Agency—and her ticket to buying her freedom. His cover blown, Grant has little choice but to take her on. Mira applies herself by day, learning the etiquette and customs that will help to earn her anonymity. By night, she dons a mask and slips into the city, fighting injustice and corruption on her own terms—and impressing Grant with her extraordinary abilities and insights into a brewing rebellion. But the rebellion isn’t all they’re fighting…

Neither of them can ignore the attraction burning between them—an attraction so powerful, it threatens to unravel everything Mira’s worked so hard for. With freedom finally within her grasp, can Mira risk it all for love?

I thought Adelaide and Cedric's romance was breathtaking. Midnight Jewel exceeded my expectations in every way. I loved the romantic relationship between MIrabel and Grant. A minor character in the first novel, Mirabel turned out to be a brave young woman with inner strength and an adventurous streak to fight injustice that comes her way. Grant, a undercover agent of Balanquan and Osfridian heritage, seeks to reclaim his citizenship and social status in the Balanquan Empire. He has enough Osfridian features to mingle among the colonists and spy for the McGraw Agency, an investigative crime unit of the Crown. Grant's secretive and cynical personality annoys Mirabel at first, she can't help how handsome and strong he looks. The two slowly come to realize their feelings for each other and together work to rescue their friends and loved ones. I will admit that Mirabel and Grant work well together as a team!

Although I wished Mead had provided some kind of map or pictures to illustrate the historical period of the series, I could haphazardly guess that the background mirrors life in the 18th century American colonies prior to the Revolutionary War. Cape Triumph, Adoria would be somewhere in the Middle colonies (present-day Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and New York). Osfrid would be Great Britain, Lorandy would be France, and the Balanquans would be similar to the Iroquois Federation. Sirminica, where Mirabel hails from, is somewhere in Southern Europe (Spain, Italy) or North Africa. Keep in mind this is my estimation of the plot so I could be wrong with my geography. Overall, I enjoyed this installment in the Glittering Court and cannot wait to hear the fiery, practical-minded Tasmin's point of view in the final installment!

Stay tuned for the third and final novel in the Glittering Court, The Emerald Sea.

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