Sea Glass is the second book in the Glass trilogy by Maria V. Snyder. This review will contain big spoilers for book one of the trilogy Storm Glass. Do not read this review if you have not read Storm Glass.
Opal Cowan is finally more than a one trick wonder–except her new “trick” isn’t one that makes anyone smile. Opal has discovered that in addition to being the only glass magician that anyone can remember ever existing, she can also drain a magician of his or her powers. This talent scares the Sitian Council, and they aren’t sure what to do with Opal, so they keep her under guard and under a null shield so she cannot use her powers. Meanwhile, Opal is trying to prove that Devlen and Ulrick have switched bodies, and are still plotting against the Master Magicians in Sitia. Unfortunately, no one believes her, not even Yelena the Soulfinder, who Opal thought was her only ally. Her lover Kade and her friends Lief (Yelena’s brother) and Janco (one of Yelena’s Ixian friends) want to help her, but can’t unless she lets them. Opal struggles to deal with the suspicions of the Council, having information no one will believe, and trying to determine what to do with her limited but impressive powers.
I liked the first book in this trilogy, and was very excited for this one. I thought Opal was an interesting heroine and I liked the supporting cast as well, especially Kade. I’m not sure what I expected this second book to be like, but this wasn’t it. Maybe part of the problem was that I read the first book in the Glass trilogy, then read the entire Study trilogy which was all about Yelena (who I really liked) and then went back to Opal and her adventures. While I still enjoyed the story and adventure in this story, I didn’t like Opal very much. Yes, she was in a bad situation, and it must have been very frustrating for no one to believe her and to not have control over so much of her life. But still, she never stopped whining. While she talked about wanting to do the right thing and prove her own story, she never really took action. She took some action (finally!) at the end of the novel, but even then the answers she was looking for almost fell into her lap.
Again, I liked the story in this novel, but when I can’t connect with the main character, the book loses something for me. I feel like this was a transitional novel, and I think the next one will be better. Opal has found herself and should be more willing to go her own way in the next book. I think her relationship with Kade will change as well, and I really like him and am intrigued to see what happens next. I always like reading about Janco as well, and thought it was cool that Snyder made him and Leif such big parts of this book. I would love to see more of Ari and Valek in the next book (and Yelena, of course, though she did have a part in this one) and I hope they make an appearance!