A Face Like Glass by Frances Hardinge

4 stars

Reviewed by Abby.

In an underground world, where power struggle is the definition of everything the Caverna people do, live for, and fear, strange little twelve year old Neverfell doesn't stand a chance. This expertly written book takes place in the underground region of Caverna, a place where changing your expression is an art. That must be learned. The people who live there, live in a world of treachery, lies, deceit, and most of all, magic. Though they know how to brew wines to forget, bake cheeses to induce visions, and spice up perfumes to put anyone under their control, they all must go to the face-makers to learn to smile. The richest own a thousand expressions while the poorest look alike in their blank emotionless stares. Poor Neverfell has been forced to wear a small velvet mask and stay hidden in the tunnels of the cheese maker to hide her odd and terrible face, that was so horribly scarred as a baby in a baking accident. There is just one thing her father, the cheese maker, has never told her. He only just found her when she was five. What about this does not add up?
This enticing read, though quite violent and holding a few murders, will hold you tight through unrelenting plot twists and unexplainable phenomenons all the way to the end. I recommend this book to all sci-fi and fantasy lovers but suggest you be at least thirteen despite the author's twelve and up quota. This is most certainly a teen read. It was slightly scary and made me apprehensive at times which is the reason I did not rate it five stars.