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The Glass Sentence (The Mapmakers Trilogy) Paperback – June 16, 2015
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From School Library Journal
Gr 6 Up—In the Great Disruption of 1799, time itself broke apart and fragmented, stranding countries and continents in different time periods, some of them thousands of years apart. Thirteen-year-old Sophia lives with her Uncle Shadrack in New Occident Boston, discovering the magic and science of maps. When her uncle is kidnapped by those seeking a powerful artifact, Sophia must journey through a dangerous, shattered landscape to seek out help and answers. An ambitious fantasy debut plunges readers headlong into a complex world built around the very nature of time. A fluid mixture of magic and science combine with the dramatic setting to bring freshness to a familiar plot arc. It will appeal to those who enjoy dedicated world-building and new worlds to explore, but it does suffer from some excess padding that may discourage reluctant readers. The complexity of the setting, plus instances of torture and character trauma make this a story to recommend to mature tween and teen audiences. For a first novel, this is particularly engaging, but not without room for improvement. This title is comparable to Philip Pullman's "His Dark Materials" trilogy (Knopf), and those who enjoy the works of Brandon Sanderson, particularly The Rithmatist (Tor Teen, 2013) are sure to snap this one up. Map-making has never been so fascinating.—Stephanie Whelan, New York Public Library --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
In the late eighteenth century, a great temporal disruption plunged the world into chaos—some continents remained in the present, while others were thrust into the distant past, a far future, or an ever-shifting mélange of ages. A century after the disruption, Sophie, who lives with her famed mapmaker uncle Shadrack, arrives home one day to find their house ransacked, her uncle kidnapped, and their secret map room—housing mystical maps containing memories—emptied of all of its treasures. Was Shadrack secretly hiding the key to a map capable of healing the rift in time? Together with her new friend Theo, Sophie embarks on an adventure to distant lands to find her uncle. Encountering pirates, hidden cities, undiscovered ages, and legendary creatures along the way, brave Sophie uses her ample smarts and powers of observation to unlock deep secrets. Though the plot occasionally seems overstuffed, debut author Grove wraps the complex central premise of this series opener in lavish detail and brisk plot turns to sweep readers along through her fascinating, fully realized fantasy world. Grades 6-9. --Sarah Hunter --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
Top customer reviews
S.E. Grove took her time and great planning to bring forth this lovely, thoroughly imagitibve piece of work. Not since His Dark Material (Phillip Pullman) and the Harry Potter series (J.K. Rowling) have I’ve been excited, fascinated and totally absorb with a story. A story that is breathtakingly beautiful.
S.E. Grove has done a wonderful job with the world build. Top Notch. I felt like I was there with Sophia riding the steam train, sailing on the pirate’s ship with the briny wind blowing through my hair and on my face.
If you love original, innovating writing and storytelling, then The Glass Sentence is for you. Whether you are an adult (as I am) or a young child. Let the maps take you on a ride that you will never forget.
P.S. It’s rare but S.E. Grove is great at making you fall in love with the main characters of the story as well as the minor. Each had their own personality and were well developed.
I listened to the audio version while reading at times and thought the narration was better than average, with lots of range and discerning qualities between characters. There are a wide range of characters, and concepts are introduced through them that remind us not to judge a person by our preconceived notions. Some of the torture was too much for my taste, but I understand how it added tension to the story.
It is fast paced, and at times I wished for more depth than speed, but that's due to my age and not a limitation on the story. I will buy the next book, and look forward to whats to come.
For thirteen-year-old Sophia Tims in Boston, the year is 1891. Sophia's been living with her uncle Shadrack in Boston, helping him with his cartology work. However, after her uncle is kidnapped, it's up to Sophia and a group of unexpected friends, to rescue him. Using maps, instinct and the help of those from different Ages, Sophia's thrown into an adventure that has her working to save the world and times itself.
There are so many things to praise about The Glass Sentence, but it's Grove's world-building that should be considered the standout, first and foremost. Grove's idea of a world fractured into different time periods is creative beyond belief, leading readers to imagine a multitude of worlds and possiblities as they travel along with Sophia in her desperate attempts to reunite with Shadrack.
As Sophia moves from Age to Age, Grove is careful to study the impact of borders on the development of a culture, along with the (unfortunately) natural xenophobia and discrimination that develops amongst people who are separated by cultural misundestandings. Educators and parents can take the opportunity to discuss how perceptions are altered by location, and what can be done to bridge that divide.
Sophia, like many of the young bookish heroines who've come before her, is a joy to read, as readers travel alongside her. She's often brash and impetuous, making decisions and jumping to emotional conclusions that make her journey to reunite with Shadrack and find out what ha happened to her parents, far more difficult than needs be. However, it's that brash behavior that makes her real, and readers won't be able to help but root for her, as she begins to work out the realities of her world.
Ultimately, while the book ends on a bit of a cliffhanger, Grove has created a wonderous world that also stands well on its own. I'm excited to see where the story will develop in book two, and I'm confident you will too.
You'll probably continue to see a lot of BIG comparisons for The Glass Sentence in the coming months and years to come. It's been compared to Philip Pullman's books, and I can say without hesitation, that those comparsions are not an exaggeration.
S.E. Grove has created a magnificient world that will challenge your understanding of fantasy and fiction. The idea of different Ages co-existing in a singular world is an intriguing one, and opens up endless possiblities on just who and what can exist or occur in this new world. It is, as Kirkus said in their review, "...Wholly original and marveous beyond compare," and if you pick up the book, you'll absolutely see why.
Readers will undoubtedly fall for protagonist Sophia's charms, as well. Like Lucy Penvensie and Lyra Belacqua before her, Sophia is a timeless heroine - quite literally, in some cases! - that will inspire readers for generations to come. Her intrepidness, fortitude and brilliance as she fights to get her uncle back, serve both as a good reminder of how one young girl can rock multiple Ages with her bravery, but also as a great reminder of how it's the youth in our lives that can challenge the status quo and change all of us for the better.
I personally can't wait to step back into Sophia's world in The Golden Specific, and only hope that you will check out The Glass Sentence before joining me for book two
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Author: S.E. Grove
Age Group: Middle Grade/Young Adult
Series: Mapmakers, book one...Read more