Disclaimer: I received a free copy via Edelweiss for review purposes.
Sonya was born with a gift that allows her to feel the emotions of those around her. Sonya’s powers are unbridled, and as a result, the death of the other girls in the boarding school are on her hands. Sonya is one of the few left, and is sent to protect the Emperor by sensing possible threats. Sonya has difficulty controlling and understanding her power, and therefore has a hard time differentiating her feelings from those around her. Getting close to Prince Anton, but even closer to the Emperor Valko, Anton’s brother, a revolutionary plot threatens to pit the brothers against each other and Sonya must choose between what’s right, and her responsibility as the Sovereign Auraseer to protect the Emperor.
I’m so very conflicted on what to rate this one. On one hand, I really enjoyed the political intrigue, the rebellious nature of the plot, and Anton as a character, but on the other hand I felt Sonya was quite a naive and tiresome character at times, and I was not at all a fan of the love triangle.
Burning Glass is definitely more character driven, and we’re given such a personal insight to both what Sonya is feeling and thinking, and what those around her are feeling, even when trying to disguise their emotions. I did enjoy Sonya as a character – she was empathetic, naturally, and kind hearted. Yet she was also quite irritating, mostly because both Sonya and the reader don’t know what her real feelings are. It’s confusing at best, maddening at worst.
As for the romance, I was really digging it until the sadistic Emperor was offered up as a love interest. I did at times feel that there was a bit of insta-love, but Sonya and Anton had great chemistry.
Overall, Burning Glass is an OK high fantasy. It’s nothing exceptional but easy to read and, on the whole, quite enjoyable.