I was drawn to this book because of the title. It combines two of my favourite things: etiquette (the fine art of acting proper) and espionage (the fine art of being a secret spy).
This book is filled with Victorian steam-punk couture and culture as well as some werewolves, vampires and mechanical friends (and rude alarms) thrown into this fantastic fictional world Gail Carriger has created.
Sophronia Temminnick is cast away to Finishing School by her mother, in the hopes that she will come back a proper young lady ready to be put out into the marriage market. As the little blurb on the front cover suggests, this is not just a school about learning how to properly curtsy (something which Sophronia cannot quite grasp) or whether milk or tea goes into the cup first, but rather it is a school to teach "the fine art of finishing others" and that poison goes in last or else it will curdle. I really do not know if that last part is true. What is true though is that from the second Miss. Temminnick was introduced to "Mademoiselle Geraldine" she entered an entirely different world which put her espionage abilities to the test right away.
She get's involved in trying to figure out if a fellow student is working for the enemy (whomever they might be) and that flywaymen are not just a scary children's bedtime story. It is definitely a book of intrigue and one that brought me into a world I had yet to venture into. I found it to be highly entertaining and not just because it filled me with the overwhelming urge to speak in a British accent. I was relieved when I did not have to deal with a young adult love triangle getting in the way of a nice fantasy mystery novel.
I really enjoyed this read and I am putting the sequel on my to-buy list. Let me know your thoughts on this book in the comments below.
Until next time,
Labels: Book Review