Book Review: Shatter

Shatter (Glitter, Bk. 2) by Aprilynne Pike
Random House, 2018, 373pp.

Trigger warning: This book contains disturbing thematic material that may be unsuitable for all ages.

I finally finished the duology that is Glitter, and I can say that as a reader, I appreciate that the story can be summed up in two books, rather than dragged out for the overused trilogy or even-longer series of titles. That is not to say that I don’t understand or appreciate the appeal of series books (in fact, I often enjoy them), however, stretching out a story longer than necessary is as grave a literary sin in my opinion as is making a trilogy out of a single book. Fantasy lovers are more than welcome to speculate which film series I mean here.

Shatter opens two days after Danica’s wedding day to King Justin, the one she never intended to participate in. Further embroiled in court life, Dani realizes she must master the games of nobility if she is to secure her freedom, and that of her beloved, Saber. To do so, she will have to beat a mastermind of evil with his own stratagems and risk her own soul in the process. Shatter asks us, is the price worth paying?

This is an emotionally difficult book to read and I had to set it down for a couple of weeks before picking it up again and finishing it finally. After deciding to blog about my reads (even the ones that turn out to be negative), I wanted to compose my thoughts to share with you while they were still fresh in mind. And this was a doozy.

Dani struggles with the consequences of her actions and the toll it takes on her physical body, her sanity and her soul — how far is too far? When do the ends not justify the means? I really liked how supportive Saber is but he’s far from a submissive doormat. He stands up to her. He balances her out and is her anchor that gives her meaning. He is quintessentially, the central character and driving force of the novel.

A bride by blackmail, Dani’s silence ensures her life and that of her father, even as she will try to find a way to fight her way to freedom, and yes, that may mean getting her face bloodied in the process. Dani’s journey is by no means an “easy, breezy read”, and perhaps not suitable for all audiences. If you enjoyed Glitter then I would recommend you pick up a copy of Shatter and give it a try. If you do, be sure to leave a comment and let me know what you think.

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