Top critical review
3 people found this helpful
on 23 October 2010
Firstly please note that I am reviewing Spy Glass as a stand alone novel and not as part of a series. Spy Glass is the third and final book of Maria V. Snyder's Glass Trilogy.
Having said that, I thought Spy Glass is more about adventure than suspense. Granted, it's one very dangerous adventure, but there was not as much suspense as I would have expected. Again, my lack of knowledge about previous books played a big role in what I think is my failure to grasp the importance of the turn of events. The plot was easy enough to follow - really, the plot is solid for a stand alone novel, but there is a lot of references that felt like they have implied meaning and relevance, as well as actions, words and phrases that appears to mean more that what I understood. Most of the characters were very easy to read about - however, there are a few characters who I felt weighed more than two sentences' worth of introduction. There was not much depth in as these characters have been written about in the previous books. For those reasons, I felt that my reading experience was not complete.
Opal is a spirited character - she's independent, smart, sometimes rash, but brave. I'm not very fond of her, and she's not very likeable. I disliked many of her decisions, especially those that pertain to her safety and those which has to do with love. With a mind of her own, she often has the tendency to overestimate or underestimate, but never right. She's fiery to a fault, and I dislike the way she seems selfish in that she forgets the people around her, but I grant that she's her own character.
I am big on commitment and loyalty, and as much as I love romance, I was heavily disappointed in Opal's actions in Spy Glass. I might be getting her wrong, but there commitment is commitment and in a relationship, it is very fundamental. I'm in no position to comment as to who she ends up with, as I don't feel like I know their characters in depth, but I do know that whether the man in question is right for you or not, I think it is basic courtesy to end the relationship before diving into another one. She got that one incredibly wrong, and I did not feel like she had the chance to feel remorseful. Of course, she's entitled to make mistakes, but it rattled me, I suppose.
Spy Glass has a strong mythology, only one I cannot relate to. I personally think the book works as a stand alone novel. However, even I can appreciate the beauty of its fantasy world and the strength of its plot. I'm not certain if those who have been following this series will find it an excellent novel as I have no frame of reference of the previous books, but I'm sure more than a few will. So while I don't recommend reading this as a standalone, I would encourage readers to have a go at the series, in order of course.