Friday Face Off : Assassins


Here we are again with the Friday Face Off meme created by Books by Proxy .  This is a great opportunity to feature some of your favourite book covers.  The rules are fairly simple each week, following a predetermined theme (list below) choose a book (this doesn’t have to be a book that you’ve read), compare a couple of the different covers available for that particular book and choose your favourite.   Future’s themes are listed below – if you have a cover in mind that you’re really wanting to share then feel free to leave a comment about a future suggested theme.  I’ve also listed events that take place during the year, that I’m aware of, so you can link up your covers – if you’re aware of any events that you think I should include then give me a shout.

I’ve added themes in below. For information, I’m trying out some new ideas so along with coming up with particular items for book covers I thought we could also look for certain elements contained within the book or that play a large part in the story – this really broadens things out because I have plenty of more ideas with this – I’ve gone for a few of the Tough Travel Themes (so a book with that theme – just choose any book – the theme isn’t necessarily on the cover, then compare covers), also, I’ve thrown in some genres and some colours.  Hopefully this will open things out a little and give us some more freedom to come up with new books.

This week’s theme:


Do you have a favourite?


9th Tough Travel Tropes – Darklord
16th Genre – Grimdark (most recent/favourite, etc)
23rd Decadent and rich – a cover that is purple
30th Completions – a satisfying conclusion to a book or series

Spy Glass by Maria Snyder

I’ve read all the books in this series starting with the Study books (Poison/Fire/Magic) and then moving on to the Glass series (Storm/Sea/Spy).  I think MS has managed to create a wonderful realm with this series of books and there is still a lot more scope to take it further.  The Study books are based on a character called Yelena and the first book is really good and gripping.  There’s a little bit of everything in there, new world to come to grips with, magic, adventure and romance and I particularly like the character of Valek.  The second series of books is based on one of the characters introduced in the Study series – Opal.  On balance, having now completed both series I would probably say that my favourite book is Poison Study and maybe that’s because it was the first book and everything was new and exciting, plus MS writes about the people and places so well so this first book really brought to life this other ‘world’.  But, that being said, I think I probably prefer Opal to Yelena.  Although Opal does seem to walk into ‘traps’ very readily which can frankly be a little bit annoying sometimes!

I enjoyed this book and thought it had a good ending although it did seem long somehow – I can’t quite put my finger on why.  I wouldn’t say I was bored or found it tedious but there was something akin to a feeling of ‘repetition’ or ‘been here before’.  I don’t know – I think I’ll have to have a bit more of a think about it.  Perhaps it’s because of the lack of magic in this book which concentrates much more on Opal’s quest.  Obviously there are elements of magic in the story but the overall feel is different.

Spy Glass
Spy Glass

SPOILER ALERT – I did think that the latter end of the book was written really well when Opal was at the command of Galen and was taken to the Bloodrose clan – her experiences there were so humiliating and frustrating although I’m not sure that I understand exactly why all the Bloodrose clan went along with their Leader’s strange vision (particularly as he didn’t seem that powerful)??

Also, I was puzzled earlier on, when Opal was at the Citadel, about her ability to create magic detectors as she was supposed to have lost all her magical abilities??


Those points aside I would definitely recommend reading the concluding novel and I would recommend to those who haven’t read the Study series to go back and do so.

Rating B+

Generic comment – Is it just me or is there becoming a tendency to write about love triangles?? Twilight Series, Hunger Games, Glass Series, Forest of Hands & Teeth, Dead Tossed Waves, etc. The whole thing makes me feel bad and I always feel so sorry for the one who is let down? I can see the point and obviously it gives another dramatic element to the story I suppose – but what puzzles me is that there never seems to be any guilt about this from the person who has two people chasing around after them?  For example, in the Mockingjay, Katniss feels guilty constantly about everything that happens throughout the story (a lot of which is completely outside her control) but she never feels guilty that she has two love interests (even though she could actually do something about this by making a choice)?  I mean surely you would feel some guilt about that?

Recommendation: I think that anybody who likes the Study/Glass novels should definitely take a look at Kristin Cashore’s two novels: Graceling and Fire.