All That Glitters is not a Diamond: The Glittering Court Review

All That Glitters is not a Diamond: The Glittering Court Review

Books-Richelle Mead
This photo provided by Penguin Young Readers shows the cover of the book, “The Glittering Court,” by Richelle Mead. (Penguin Young Readers via AP)

The Glittering Court by Richelle Mead came out this April and I have been really excited to read it.  I have read all of the Vampire Academy and Bloodlines series and loved them, so I was excited to see what Mead would do in a different universe.  I added my name to the library wait list about three weeks before the book was released and finally got it about a month later.  I was not disappointed.

This book is about a countess, Elizabeth, who poses as her lady’s maid, Adelaide, to escape a financially-motivated arranged marriage.  She is taken to the Glittering Court, a finishing school where lower class women are trained to be wives of the “new nobility,” in the new world.


  • Love factor:  I really liked that this didn’t have a love triangle, even though there was potential.  I loved Cedric and Adelaide together.  They are witty and passionate.  I would
  • World building:  Here is where I think The Glittering Court missed the mark.  First the setting was troubling.  This felt more like historical fiction than fantasy.  Maybe if the setting was more flushed out it wouldn’t have felt like 19th century England and the New World/California during the gold rush.  If it was to be Historical Fiction, there still needed to be some reworking of the setting, but to be fantasy there wasn’t nearly enough information to establish an entire new world and society.  Next the culture.  I would have loved to learn more about the way the gods and angels worked because (I think) they were supposed to be important, but because I didn’t know much about them they didn’t seem to mater.  I hope they make a bigger play in the next book and weren’t just there to create tension for Cedric because they seemed really interesting.  However, at 400 pages, these edits would have made the book much longer, which I wouldn’t have minded, but as a first book of the series others might have and it could have hurt future book sales.
  • Series starter:  This is the first book of a trilogy.  The only way for this to be a successful trilogy (aka the only way I will read the rest of the books) is for Mead to do like LaFevers did in her His Fair Assassins trilogy and do each book from a different girls points of view.  For the most part, Adelaide’s story is done.  What we need to know now is what secrets Mira and Tamsin are keeping.  I’d like the next book to be from Tamsin and the final from Mira.  If the next book is still about Adelaide, it will be super boring, and I definitely won’t read them.  Also,  why make the other two women super mysterious in the last chapter if she isn’t going to give us a peak into their minds
  • Favorite Quote:  It’s a tie between these two.”Before I stepped away, I looked back at the angel, back at my parents’ names. ‘Bad things are going to happen,’ my father had told me in his last year. ‘There’s no avoiding that. Our control comes in how we face them. Do we let them crush us, making us despondent? Do we face them unflinchingly and endure the pain? Do we outsmart them?’ I’d asked him what it meant to outsmart a bad thing. ‘You’ll know when the time comes. And when it does, you need to act quickly.”

    “I’m just saying that we don’t need to further petty rivalries when there’s already so much evil in the world we need to stop.”


Overall, I would rate this book as a Sapphire (or give it three out of five stars).  for this to be diamond level, there needed to be more everything.  More setting, more time at the school, more relationship developing between the girls and Adelaide and Cedric, just more.

Have you read The Glittering Court?  What did you think?  Leave it in the comments!  Also, if you have any recommendations, I’m always looking for my next read!



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