Review: The Glittering Court | Richelle Mead

All I could hope was that maybe, finally, I’d be free. – Adelaide


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… Goodreads

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My Pick One Favorite

Scene: The Sewing Incident
“You are sewing. Or well, something sort of like sewing.”

I love this scene with the sewing incident. We reach a point in the story where Adelaide really fails, and it’s great. Not in a mean way, but she finally realizes how little she really knows about taking care of herself, but somehow must figure it out. What’s so wonderful about Adelaide is that she’s totally willing to learn and wants to be able to take care of herself – not relying on servants to do everything for her.

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Thoughts About The Book

A lot of people, Richelle Mead included, describe The Glittering Court as a book about a noblewoman posing as a maid going to school to become a noblewoman. Wait .. What? Anyone else just get confused? Well I certainly did when I first heard about this book. I thought, this storyline doesn’t make any sense! How would she.. what would she… why in the world..? BUT it totally works – trust me.

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to mix modern tendencies with old ways? Well, that’s sort of what The Glittering Court accomplishes. The world building consists of a royal hierarchy, religious issues, and world exploration comparable to the 1600’s with England and the New World. In a nut shell, it’s about a royal countess in a country called Osfrid (think England) who is trying desperately to escape her shackled life as a royal. Her current problems include: lack of money, lack of resources, and a very unappealing arranged marriage. It seems like she can’t go anywhere without being pushed back into a life she doesn’t want. Her solution? Pose as one of her maids entering the Glittering Court so she can start over in a new world. Makes a little more sense now right?

The beginning of the story had me intrigued, I was curious as to how Adelaide would pull off the switch and make it to the new world, but towards the middle, I was beginning to wonder where the story was going. I remember thinking “ummmm we’re only almost half way through the book and it seems like the story is winding down.” Then I kept trying to guess how a whole other half of a book could be made with what was left. Again though, it totally works out. My advice is to just trust in the author and enjoy the ride.

My only small compliant was that some of the characters and relationships seems a little underdeveloped, which really didn’t bug me too much because I know a little tidbit of information on the while Glittering Court Series – yes it is a series, you didn’t know? Most other people don’t know either. I was just lucky enough to attend a Glittering Court release book signing event with Richelle Mead, so I was able to get some insider scoop information. Here’s what I know. This is the first book in an installment of 3. The next two books are written from either the point of view of Tamsin or Mira (other main girls in the first book) where you learn a little more about the incompleteness you feel after reading The Glittering Court. What I don’t know is where those books start. Will they start from the beginning of that particular girl’s story or will it start from where book one left off? So what am I saying? That because I knew this information going into the book, I didn’t feel as frustrated at some of the holes and my hopes are that this will help you understand the story and series a little better as well.


Depends. People have compared this to The Selection series, but said it’s not as good; however, I have never read that series so I can’t speak to that. I personally enjoyed the read and would say yes, Richelle mead knows how to create a complex story with unexpected twists and relatable themes. BUT there is the holeproblem and if you don’t want to deal with the frustration, then my advice would be to wait until the other 2 books are released and read the series as a whole.

My 5 Cup Rating:

Book Info

Genre: Historical Fiction, Dystopian (ish), Fantasy
Pages: 416 (hardcover)
Publication Date: April 5, 2016
Publisher: Razorbill
Website: Richelle Mead official website
The Glittering Court on Goodreads
Richelle Mead Amazon author page
My Review Copy: Purchased
◄ Where to Get Your Copy:
Barnes & Noble 

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What were your thoughts on The Glittering Court? Favorite character, quote, scene? How was story progression and development for you?
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