I received this galley in consideration for an honest review.The Midnight Jewel by Richelle Mead
Series: The Glittering Court #2
Published by Penguin on June 27, 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
A refugee of war, Mira was cast out of her home country and thrust into another, where the conditions were inhospitable at best. In a life-altering twist of fate, she is given the chance to escape once more, and she takes it, joining 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. There, Mira finds herself subjected to persecution, not only from her fellow Glittering Court jewels, but from her suitors, as well—men she would potentially be expected to give her life to.
By day, she goes through the motions, learning the etiquette and customs that will help to earn her anonymity, even making a couple true friends in the process, the forthright ladies’ maid Adelaide and the ambitious laundress Tamsin. But by night, Mira hatches a different plan entirely—one that, if exposed, could get her hanged in the highest court of Adoria.
When I read The Glittering Court I admit I had mixed feelings about the book, but I did like Mira. I was excited to learn that the next book would tell her story! Mira is a refugee and gets into The Court with a very specific goal in mind, and it really isn’t about husbands. I like to think she was a balance between Adelaide and Tamsin. She was neither naive nor completely jaded, but perhaps a little more street smart and determined. One big difference in perspective between the two narrators is the constant prejudice that Mira is subjected to because of where she is from. If you were to compare her view with Adelaide’s, you would see how different their worlds are based on that one fact, alone. There were some very disturbing and sad aspects of Mira’s background and rather than serving s shortcuts for her characters motivation, they built her into someone that I really enjoyed reading.
Basically, Mira is a super hero, which is close ot what I suspected when I read The Glittering Court. She fights crime in secret, which was awesome, and ends up doing more work on the side in exchange for help uncovering some mysteries still haunting her about her family. Of course here was romance (yay) which I did like because the banter was excellent and they were so equally matched in intelligence and personality. From a pacing perspective, I felt like The Midnight Jewel got down to business a little better than The Glittering Court. The timeline is the same, essentially, but there isn’t as much time taken to tell the story of before they get to Adoria. I do think it is helpful to have read book one because you get so much background into what the court is and why the girls want to be a part of it. Overall, I enjoyed The Midnight Jewel. The world building from book one continued and Mira was the honorable, brave, loyal, and mysterious main character I thought she would be. It was an exciting story with everything you look for in an adventure.
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