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The Golden Specific

(The Mapmakers Trilogy #2)

4.12  ·  Rating details ·  1,988 ratings  ·  278 reviews
The eagerly-awaited sequel to the best-selling The Glass Sentence -- a historical, fantastical adventure perfect for fans of Philip Pullman!

It is the summer of 1892, one year since Sophia Tims and her friend Theo embarked upon the dangerous adventure that rewrote the map of the world. Since their return home to Boston, she has continued searching for clues to her parents’
Hardcover, 505 pages
Published July 14th 2015 by Viking
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Ashley Amazon says it comes out July 14, 2015. It's part of a trilogy so I assume there will be a third book…moreAmazon says it comes out July 14, 2015. It's part of a trilogy so I assume there will be a third book(less)
Mary Amateis I don't think so, i'm in the middle of it, and no sign of any smooching so far, which is super depressing. Actually, Theo and Sophia spend the majorit…moreI don't think so, i'm in the middle of it, and no sign of any smooching so far, which is super depressing. Actually, Theo and Sophia spend the majority of this book separated, and rumor has it, that once they do come back to each other in the end, there's still no kisses. I'm debating even finishing this book, because it's so depressing. I barely made it through Son of Neptune, where Percy and Annabeth spend the whole book apart.(less)

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Average rating 4.12  · 
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 ·  1,988 ratings  ·  278 reviews

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Aug 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy
An excellent sequel to The Glass Sentence. Rather than continue to develop the bond between Theo Thackaray and Sophia Tims, Grove has them split apart by circumstances, with Sophia continuing her search for her missing parents, without the help of her guardian, Shadrack Elli, while Theo stays in Boston to help Shadrack face a political foe. Both stories are compelling and interesting, and were left off in a good place for the conclusion of the trilogy. Their new companions are interesting and di ...more
Jul 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
I stand in awe of this series. It’s got young leads in an intricate and highly cerebral plot that is most often compared with Philip Pullman’s Dark Materials trilogy, but there is an essential difference that makes me (admittedly in the minority, but hear me out!) prefer this series. Pullman’s series is a bit like Atlas Shrugged for a younger audience – the story exists to serve the philosophy (or theology), and if you don’t like (or outright hate) the philosophy, you won’t like the books. S. E. ...more
Though this book was wonderful, I did not like it as much as the first. Yes, I did like the new characters, but I would like to focus on what did not work as well as the first one and hope the third will include many elements the first book has. SPOILERS!

1. Sophia and Theo are spilt up nearly the entire book. One of my favorite things about the first book is the interactions between them, and you get to see very little of that in this book.

2. Normally "up-ing the stakes" for the sequel to a boo
May 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Wow that was one hell of a sequel. I really REALLY wish that more people had read this series so that I could talk about it with someone. Even though my precious characters were apart pretty much the whole novel their stories intertwined. I'm in love with all the new characters introduced into the book as well. I know that this book is categorized as middle grade but to me it is not a middle grade book AT ALL. For one if I read this when I was younger I would have been very confused because it i ...more
Sep 20, 2016 rated it really liked it
it took me about 100+ pages to finally get into it and I'm glad. the pieces of this plot puzzle are so masterfully woven, I love how it all comes together at the end.

I absolutely loved the new characters, in a way they were whimsical and intriguing. the entire book seemed like a fairytale to me. a truly unique and magical read.
Apr 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It took me forever to get around reading this one, because I've been waiting for the paperback release and I was scared it wouldn't live up to the first one. After all, it's been almost two years since I read The Glass Sentence. But, because I had loved the first book so much, I still had vivid memories of what had happened and I didn't struggle to follow anything.

My favourite part of this book was the world-building. I'm obsessed with maps and the fact that the world is set in different time pe
Jim Sibigtroth
Aug 01, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novels
3 1/2 stars. I am reviewing all three books of the Mapmakers Trilogy at once because most readers will want to read it as if it was a single story split into three books. The Glass Sentence (book 1) and The Golden specific (book 2) have significant climaxes that end the portion of the story told in those books but leave significant loose ends that are not finished until the next book(s). Books 2 and 3 pick up where the previous books ended.

The fantasy world is based on our own world except that
Feb 04, 2021 rated it liked it
3.5 stars
Oct 16, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good series.
Rebecca Morales
Jun 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is the sequel to The Glass Sentences. Sophia is still searching for her missing parents. But that journey takes some unexpected twist and turns. Sophia is separated from friends and family. Her uncle is accused of murder. Theo must try to find evidence to prove who the real murder is.

The first book in the mapmaker trilogy left me more confused than anything but I found this book to be absolutely delightful.

I loved the murder mystery element. I loved seeing our young protagonist being forc
I'm curious if I've ever given the second book of a trilogy more than a 3-star rating; I suspect not. I enjoyed this book, but not as much as the first, and I'm hoping I will love the third one. I guess we'll see! Since this is a second book, of course, the author had to amp up the conflict, so it was missing some elements that I loved from the first book.

Most notably: I love Theo! And I love Sophia and Theo's friendship. So the fact that they were separated for almost this entire book was sad.
Mel (Daily Prophecy)
This series has such an intriguing, detailed and difficult world-building, especially for a middle-grade series. It's obvious that the author has put a lot of thought in creating this world (LOVE the map and information at the start of every chapter) The story is a bit slower than the first book, but I liked that both Sophia and Theo got their own story line. The ending leaves me with the wish of continuing right away :)

Beautiful inside design too, by the way.
Lauren Biondi
Oct 22, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really liked the storyline of this one, a little better than the first even. Although I think this one had a little less action than the first which made it move kind of slowly sometimes. Sophia's storyline had some trouble keeping my attention, but I LOOOOVED Theo's storyline, and I love Theo :) also... THAT ENDING!!!!!! That is all. ...more
Dec 02, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, ya, solid
This series is ALMOST something very cool and incredibly original. It's ALMOST something that I really love, or maybe something that I would have loved as a kid.

Now, there's just something missing. I'm not sure what it is.

Sophia and Theo's adventures across the Ages are interesting, but I always fall short of being really captivated. This book in particular was a "middle of the series" book, which unraveled some worldbuilding mysteries but didn't resolve anything. The new characters were fun, b
May 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The Golden Specific:
By S.E Grove:

The Golden Specific by S.E Grove, is about a young girl named Sophia Tims, who is trying to find her parents. The paths that she chooses to take are not always easy, she faces many struggles along the way. The story takes place between many different ages with many different characters and religions. The book kind of talks about two different stories and places at once since the two main characters were split up from the very beginning, this created a more inte
Bethany Dickey
Jan 07, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I LOVE these books! I do think they'd be a bit complex for their intended age range, but perhaps not. Sophia and Theo are both a delight to follow and I can't wait to see what happens in book 3! ...more
When I read The Glass Sentence last year, I absolutely fell in love with it, and I have to admit that I fangirled a bit when I met S. E. Grove at a local book event. That fangirling sparked a nice rapport between us, however, and she was gracious enough to send me an ARC of The Golden Specific! It was a challenge, not diving into that book immediately, but when I finally allowed myself to read it -- such delight!

The Golden Specific was every bit as wondrous and entertaining as I'd hoped. It cont
Amy B
Jun 24, 2016 rated it liked it
3.8 stars or something like that. (I know - I'm hard to please) :/

I found the first book in this series a little dense and hard to get through. This one was a little easier for me, maybe because I was prepared for some deep reading. Its density, I think, is at once a strength and a weakness. Grove's story is so thorough, so full, so...historical, that it can be heavy to read, but at the same time gives the story an air of authenticity. I rarely question why the author chose something to happen,
Sep 04, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015
I’d been so looking forward to this, but it was a rough reading experience. My daughter’s naps went haywire and I fell asleep early every night. When I could grab a few pages, it just felt so large in my hands. Such silly things to hold you back from a story you like so much.

Overall, this one was interesting but still felt a little over my head at times. I wish I had read this series pre-mommy brain. I totally ship Erroll and Goldenrod and would follow them through so many pages. And Theo! Oh Th
Dec 29, 2017 rated it liked it
Some other reviewers have rightly mentioned that this book doesn't have the same sense of importance or urgency as the first book, and I definitely agree. Despite the action of the book being divided up between so many different characters' perspectives and frequently shifting between them (Sophia's on the way to find her parents, Theo's as he tries to defend Shadrack's innocence, Minna's as we learn of Sophia's parents' trip to the Papal States, Cabeza de Cabra's as we see his view of what happ ...more
Aug 14, 2014 added it
Shelves: 2015-favorites
Sorry, Mel! I had to finish!

The Glass Sentence & The Golden Specific are the most inventive MG fantasy novels that I've read since Harry Potter. Highly, highly, HIGHLY recommended.
Nov 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audio-books
I wonder if this book felt as poignant when it was released a few years ago, as it does now with Trump as our president...

Jul 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was even better than the first one! Is that even possible? But I LOVED how the POVs sort of split and we got to see more different characters in different places. I liked that so much. I liked the direction the author is taking the story so much. It is just generally so super intriguing. I love this series SO MUCH. SO, SO MUCH.
David Schwan
Nov 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
The story line splits in this book with a governmental conspiracy in Boston and a trip to Spain. Some big secrets are hinted at in this book. Since some clues as to what's to come are hinted at it will be interesting to see if the author does a good job of presenting them. Some world building in this book but mostly character development. ...more
Dec 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars.
I travel so far with this book.
The world building is so awesome and magic. The author manage to grew up this universe in so many way. I can wait to have book n°3 to finally know everything. ^^
May 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
I'm not going to review this, I'm just going to say that I think I liked it better than I liked 'The Glass Sentence' and I'm not sure why. Maybe because of Errol? I always like it when the Han Solo/Robin Hood character finally makes an appearance. ...more
Jul 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful follow up to 'The Glass Sentence'!! I was worried that this one wouldn't be able to live up to my expectations, but it was a lot better than I could have ever imagined. I can't wait for the next one! ...more
Izzy  P.
Dec 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018-2019
This was an amazing sequel! It can get a little confusing at some points, but the basic storyline is intriguing! I loved the new characters that were introduced and pleased to learn more about Theo's backstory. I would definitely recommend this book to any fiction lover! I love S.E Grove's work! ...more
Oct 16, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really great sequel, I think I liked it more than the first even. We see a lot more of the world and find out crazy things about what's really going on :D. ...more
Jul 06, 2015 rated it it was amazing
LOVED THIS BOOK. LOVE THIS SERIES. Amazing world building, fantastic characters, great plot. Can't wait for book 3 tbqh. ...more
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Other books in the series

The Mapmakers Trilogy (3 books)
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  • The Crimson Skew (The Mapmakers Trilogy, #3)

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