ARC Review: A Face Like Glass by Frances Hardinge

Hello, Bookish Buddies. Wow, it is about time for me to have finished this book.  I got it a month in advance at it’s already been out for a month. I need to get my life together, but first I’d like to thank ABRAMS Kids on NetGalley for kindly letting me read and review their book. And boy, did I love it. If you’d like to familiarize yourself with the plot before I get into the review, here you go:

img_3181In the underground city of Caverna, the world’s most skilled craftsmen toil in the darkness to create delicacies beyond compare—wines that remove memories, cheeses that make you hallucinate, and perfumes that convince you to trust the wearer, even as they slit your throat. On the surface, the people of Caverna seem ordinary, except for one thing: their faces are as blank as untouched snow. Expressions must be learned, and only the famous Facesmiths can teach a person to express (or fake) joy, despair, or fear—at a steep price.

Into this dark and distrustful world comes Neverfell, a girl with no memory of her past and a face so terrifying to those around her that she must wear a mask at all times. Neverfell’s expressions are as varied and dynamic as those of the most skilled Facesmiths, except hers are entirely genuine. And that makes her very dangerous indeed…

A Face Like Glass is a must read for all fans of Alice in Wonderland.  I didn’t even enjoy Alice in Wonderland, but I enjoyed this book.  A Face Like Glass is set in a mystical world with intricate plot lines and mysteries that I would say borderline on genius.

Throughout the book, our protagonist, twelve year old Neverfell is trying to discover the social politics and norms of the world around her, and also how she got to where she was.  Her memory begins one day when she was five years old and she has no idea what happened to her before then.  In the end, all of the plot lines weave together so perfectly, creating a satisfying ending to this standalone.

I also loved the friendship between Neverfell and Zouelle, and how their characters both develop together.  I also love that this book doesn’t have a romantic subplot, leaving time for intricate, fleshed out characters to form.  I really think all of the characters were realistic and so distinct, which is a rarity in a lot of books these days.

The one issue I had with this book was that it was in multiple perspectives.  I think I would have been more connected to Neverfell as a character if I only saw the story through her eyes, because she is told so little and she feels so uninformed throughout the entire book.

Overall, I gave A Face Like Glass 4.5/5 stars for its intricacy and overall epic-ness.

Are you interested in reading A Face Like Glass?


6 thoughts on “ARC Review: A Face Like Glass by Frances Hardinge

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