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Review: The Emerald Sea by Richelle Mead

Hey all, Dani here.

I have read quite a few Richelle Mead books over the years. Yes, I technically still need to finish her Georgina Kincaid series and her Dark Swan series. Other than that, I think I’ve read them all. When the Glittering Court trilogy was announced, I was intrigued but not excited to the same degree as some previous books. But then I was swept away into this new world, getting totally caught up in the lives of these main three ladies. But this is the one I was most looking forward to, because I really wanted to know more about Tamsin.

So welcome to the Glittering Court, and let’s jump into the review.

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Summary

The final installment in Richelle Mead’s sweeping, enthralling Glittering Court series answers the trilogy’s biggest question: what is the secret that drives Tamsin to win at all costs?

Tamsin Wright is unstoppable. She must become the Glittering Court’s diamond: the girl with the highest test scores, the most glamorous wardrobe, and the greatest opportunities to match with an elite suitor in the New World. Training alongside other girls in the Glittering Court, Tamsin immerses herself completely in lessons about etiquette, history, and music–everything a high-society wife would need to know. Once she’s married, she’ll be able to afford a better life for her family, so the sacrifice is worth it if she can be the best.

When her friendship with Mira and Adelaide, her roommates at the Glittering Court, threatens her status as the top-ranked prospect, she does the only thing she knows will keep her on track: she cuts them out of her life. But when her voyage across the sea goes off course, Tamsin must use her unrelenting grit and determination to survive the harsh winter far north of her intended destination in hopes of making it back to the Glittering Court in time to secure a proposal–and a comfortable future for her family.

Experiencing new cultures and beliefs for the first time, Tamsin realizes that her careful studies haven’t prepared her for everything, and with new alliances formed with roguish tradesman Jago Robinson and good-natured minister Gideon Stewart, Tamsin’s heart begins to be pulled in different directions. But she can’t let her brewing attraction get in the way of her ultimate goal: protecting the secret she holds closest to her heart, the one that would unravel everything she’s worked for if it’s uncovered.

My Thoughts

Rating: 5 stars

First I should probably say that this is a trilogy that you can technically read in any order. All three stories take place at the same time but give you a different narrative perspective. That being said, I absolutely recommend that you read the first book, The Glittering Court, first. I feel like it sets up the school and the training and the characters the best. The other two books pretty much breeze past their school times.

I’m actually glad that Tamsin’s story is the final one. Don’t get me wrong; I liked Adelaide’s story, and I though Mira’s tale was interesting, but Tamsin’s journey is worth the wait.

Oh, and that secret of Tamsin’s that is mentioned in the summary…yeah, that gets revealed to us in the first couple of chapters, and is revealed to or discovered by a few others throughout the novel.

I read Tamsin’s story pretty quickly, especially for the size of the book. Honestly it might be because Tamsin is such a determined and strong-willed character. I was compelled to keep reading. I had to know what was going to happen. Her story has a lot of roadblocks and detours and setbacks, but through it all it feels like Tamsin is the one who keeps the girls of the Glittering Court going, and who keeps fighting to get them where they need to be.

Seeing the other cultures was really cool. I especially need to give credit to how various religions are portrayed in pretty much every Richelle Mead book. She handles them in realistic yet respectful ways–I suppose her college degrees come in handy for that.

Both Gideon and Jago were intriguing men, but I know which one I preferred…the one she eventually chooses. The other one wasn’t bad; I just don’t think they were as compatible.

Basically I loved this book, and it has made me want to read the other two again, just to see what connections I missed the first time around.

Where to Buy

You can get your own copy of The Emerald Sea from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-a-million, Book Depository, or your local indie bookstore.

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