by Richelle Mead
Narrator: Kristen Sieh
Published by Listening Library on April 5, 2016
Genres: Young Adult Historical
Length: 12 hours and 53 minutes
Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble
Big and sweeping, spanning from the refined palaces of Osfrid to the gold dust and untamed forests of Adoria, The Glittering Court tells the story of Adelaide, an Osfridian countess who poses as her servant to escape an arranged marriage and start a new life in Adoria, the New World. But to do that, she must join 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. Adelaide naturally excels in her training, and even makes a few friends: the fiery former laundress Tamsin and the beautiful Sirminican refugee Mira. She manages to keep her true identity hidden from all but one: the intriguing Cedric Thorn, son of the wealthy proprietor of the Glittering Court.
When Adelaide discovers that Cedric is hiding a dangerous secret of his own, together they hatch a scheme to make the best of Adelaide’s deception. Complications soon arise—first as they cross the treacherous seas from Osfrid to Adoria, and then when Adelaide catches the attention of a powerful governor.
But no complication will prove quite as daunting as the potent attraction simmering between Adelaide and Cedric. An attraction that, if acted on, would scandalize the Glittering Court and make them both outcasts in wild, vastly uncharted lands…
I was really surprised with The Glittering Court. This story was a mix of adventure, friendship, romance and intrigue. I really liked this book!
What did I like about this book?
I liked the story because it was unique. The Glittering Court tells the story of Lady Elizabeth Whitmore, a young countess who is on the verge of being wed in an arranged marriage. Since her parents death her family fortune has been dwindling. The arranged marriage is the only way to protect her and her grandmother’s future. But Lady Elizabeth has always been outspoken and dreads the strict future ahead of her. To escape she poses as her servant Adelaide and enrolls in the Glittering Court. The Glittering Court transforms impoverished girls into upper-class ladies to be brought to the New World in the hopes of marrying wealthy settlers. Adelaide quickly forms a bond with her roommates Mira and Tamsin but finds it difficult to hide her true identity. Her attraction to Cedric Thorn, son of the wealthy proprietor of the Glittering Court, makes Adelaide’s life even more complicated. But Adelaide isn’t the only one keeping secrets so the many twists in this story will keep you entertained and wanting more.
I also liked the characters in this book. The Glittering Court reminded me of The Prince and The Pauper. Adelaide runs from the arranged marriage to be free but after spending time at the Glittering Court she comes to realize how really lucky she has been. She’s been pampered all her life but now she learns the gratification of working hard. The education at the Glittering Court reminded me of My Fair Lady and Tamsin is just as charming as Eliza Doolittle. Mira is treated as an outcast since she is a refugee from a war torn country. But Adelaide and Tamsin see past the color of her skin and they become a strong team while at the court. I loved these ladies but Mira and Tamsin are keeping secrets so I can’t wait to read the next books featuring their story. Cedric is charming and I love how he treated Adelaide with respect. Their relationship is slow building which adds to the suspense of this story.
What didn’t I like about this book?
There were parts of the story that I felt were slow. The beginning of the book spends a lot of time on the education of the girls so there were parts that I felt was boring. The Glittering Court is set in a world that is a mix of historical England and the American frontier so I was surprised with the length of this book. There is a lot going on in this book but I liked how it tied all together.
The Glittering Court is my first book from author Richelle Mead and I enjoyed her writing. This book has great characters, an interesting plot and a sweet romance. I can’t wait for the next books and to read more from this author.
Kristen Sieh was the perfect narrator for this book. She created distinct voices for all the characters. Her voice for Adelaide was regal, for Mira was exotic and for Tasmin was feisty. Her performance had the emotion and strength that made the characters come to live. I look forward to listening to more from this narrator.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2016 Audiobook Challenge
- 2016 New Release Challenge