Storm Glass by Maria V Snyder (Opal Cowan Trilogy: Book 1)

Four years after she helped Yelena Zaltana save Sitia from the Fire Warpers the one-trick-wander, Opal Cowan, still has not developed the myriad of magical skills that her fellow students at the Magician's Keep have discovered. To keep her mind off her inability to use the most basic of magic Opal spends her time in the glassworks where she makes the glass messengers that she is famed for. All this changes when Opal is summoned to the Master Magicians and asked to help with a problem in the Stormdancer Clan. The glass orbs that they use to tame the storms have been breaking and killing the Stormdancers. As the resident glass expert Opal goes to investigate the problem with Master Magician Zitora Cowan but the trip is more than eventful as Opal discovers that a Glass Magician is not always a welcome magician, particularly when she discovers that someone has sabotaged one of the main components of the Stormdancer's glass.

While trying to undo a plot that has worked its way through much of Sitia and even up into the northern most reaches of neighbouring country Ixia and it's diamond mines. Life for Opal becomes more complicated as she discovers yet another unusual power which causes much alarm to the magician's around her and the distrustful Sitian council. Add to this a complicated love triangle and multiple attempts on Opals life and she has her work cut out to try and get to the bottom of the sabotage that is causing her so much trouble.

Storm Glass follows on from the events of Maria V Snyder's previous series (the Yelena Zaltana Series) and anyone reading Storm Glass before reading Snyder's first series may get a bit confused as to Opal's continual comparisons between herself and Yelena and why Yelena is held in such esteem. Snyder does well at trying to explain the back story without reiterating the previous series. Compared to Yelena Zaltana, Opal Cowan is a relatively bland heroine with no particular reason for her angst most of the time. But while she lacks the mystery, drive and charisma that Yelena had she does bring her own problems to the book as she is far too trusting of people and naïve of the world around her which can lead to its own problems.

Storm Glass is a good attempt by Snyder to try and bring some interest out of a relatively weak storyline about sabotage in Sitia's glass industry. Compared to Snyder's first series this book lacks the intrigue and action of Fire Study (the first book of Synder's first series). The constant comparisons that Opal makes between her and Yelena do not help as it is a constant reminder of the stronger, more interesting character from the previous books. For the most part I was unable to put the book down, wanting to find out what happened to Opal and her increasingly complicated personal life more than for the storyline.


Opal Cowen is a young magician whose life has been turned upside down.

In her final year at the Magician Keep, Opal is sent out on a mission that is almost impossible to fulfil.

Plagued by self-doubt, convinced by others that her talents are nothing but a 'one trick wonder', Opal must channel her inner strength to defeat, not only her inner demons, but also those who lurk around the corner, waiting and watching Opal's every move.

In Opal's quest to understand herself and her hidden powers, she must decide to trust those around her, to let people love her for who she is and for what she is.

Along the way, Opal will finds it hard to trust, but most of all, to love. With the memory of her sister still haunting her, Opal needs to overcome her innocence and become the Magician she knows hides deep inside her.

A tale of a young woman's desire to find the truth, to find her destiny, but most of all, to find inner peace, Storm Glass is the first novel of the Glass Trilogy by Maria V Snyder.

8/10 A tale of a young woman's desire to find the truth.

Reviews by and Snjezana Bobic

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