by S.E. Grove
Pub. Date: June 12, 2014
My Rating: ☆☆☆☆
She has only seen the world through maps. She had no idea they were so dangerous.
Boston, 1891. Sophia Tims comes from a family of explorers and cartologers who, for generations, have been traveling and mapping the New World—a world changed by the Great Disruption of 1799, when all the continents were flung into different time periods. Eight years ago, her parents left her with her uncle Shadrack, the foremost cartologer in Boston, and went on an urgent mission. They never returned. Life with her brilliant, absent-minded, adored uncle has taught Sophia to take care of herself.
Then Shadrack is kidnapped. And Sophia, who has rarely been outside of Boston, is the only one who can search for him. Together with Theo, a refugee from the West, she travels over rough terrain and uncharted ocean, encounters pirates and traders, and relies on a combination of Shadrack’s maps, common sense, and her own slantwise powers of observation. But even as Sophia and Theo try to save Shadrack’s life, they are in danger of losing their own.
Imaginative, well-written, gripping were a few words that crossed my mind after I finished this book. You can see the imagination that S.E. Grove had for this world in the intrigue, maps, magic, ghosts, and different time periods she created. I am often get caught up in new, well-written worlds, something that came entirely from one persons imagination, and I was entirely caught up in Grove’s world.
I loved the premise of a world thrown into disruption, of continents flung into different time periods. I loved the idea of exploring the different worlds, of maps made from glass, metal, sand, and how they are made to work with magic. The idea of the carta mayor – a map of how the entire world and how it was, is and will be – was what drove this story, and my interest in it. I spent half the time wondering whether it was real, was it not real, what would happen if they discovered that it was real. I absolutely loved the idea of these magical maps, and how Grove made them work in the story.
Then there were the characters. I loved Sophia; she so interesting. Here was a girl who has no sense of time, to who time passing by seems like a second, which forces her to carry a pocket watch with her at all times to keep track. She lives with her Uncle Shadrack, a famous cataloger, after her parents disappeared when she was a baby. There relationship was interesting; Sophia often ended up having to take care of herself, and oftentimes the adults around her, yet you could still see the love that they had for each other. The many other characters in the book – the pirates, the Lachrima, the Baldlanders – were equally as fascinating.
My one complaint would have to do with the title, The Glass Sentence. I do not understand why it was given that title, as it has more to do with glass maps. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys world-building and fantasy. I commend S.E. Grove for her excellent writing; creating those worlds, the characters was well done, and I am eagerly looking forward to the sequel.