A nice trip into fantasy becomes difficult to navigate without enough clues. Snyder’s tale isn’t a stand-alone and newcomers will need to start with the first book. Snyder’s plot is quite convoluted, and the writing style doesn’t at all jibe with the medieval setting.

Opal Cowan is slowly recovering from the wrenching showdown that resulted in the loss of her powers; she can no longer create glass magic and she’s immune to the effects of magic. Her glass messengers, her magical answer to instant messaging, have become vital to Sitian society, but the only way to control the messengers is to control Opal. Opal is determined to prove that blood magic is still being used, which comes against a wall of doubt from the Council, her family and even her mentor, but she knows her stolen blood is the key that might let her regain her powers. Opal’s determination to prove her point pits her against the council, evil prison guards and even places her between two men who both love her — though one has already proven he is able to betray her. (MIRA, Sep., 432 pp., $13.95)
Reviewed by: 
Pat Cooper