Friday, March 22, 2013

Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger

Release Date: Out now!

Publisher: Little Brown

Pages: 320pgs

The Story

It's one thing to learn to curtsy properly. It's quite another to learn to curtsy and throw a knife at the same time. Welcome to finishing school.

Fourteen-year-old Sophronia is the bane of her mother's existence. Sophronia is more interested in dismantling clocks and climbing trees than proper etiquette at tea--and god forbid anyone see her atrocious curtsy. Mrs. Temminnick is desperate for her daughter to become a proper lady. She enrolls Sophronia in Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality.

But little do Sophronia or her mother know that this is a school where ingenious young girls learn to finish, all right--but it's a different kind of finishing. Mademoiselle Geraldine's certainly trains young ladies in the finer arts of dance, dress, and etiquette, but also in the other kinds of finishing: the fine arts of death, diversion, deceit, espionage, and the modern weaponries. Sophronia and her friends are going to have a rousing first year at school.

First in a four book YA series set 25 years before the Parasol Protectorate but in the same universe.

The Review

I am a huge fan of Gail Carriger. A huge one. Her adult paranormal Parasol Protectorate series was an absolute delight to read, so I was extremely excited to see what else she would come up with next - which in this case, was her first young adult book of series that is based in the same paranormal world that the author has already created in that adult series of hers. Now I will admit I mostly bought this book (as an excuse really) because of its gorgeous cover and it would look so neat to have on my bookshelf too (which, of course, it did) but regardless of that, I have to say I quite enjoyed reading this book as well. It wasn't necessarily perfect like her adult books were but it was still a super fun read that had this 'funk' about it!

Personally, I thought ETIQUETTE & ESPIONAGE read more like a middle grade book than of a young adult one. It wasn't a total shocker on my part considering it was something I was already expecting as I've read countless of reviews who had made the same mentions of it as well, so I already knew what I was getting myself into, you know? And okay, the story may seem silly to us at times and perhaps not a lot happened in the actual book (which was a bit of a downer), but when it comes down to it, I still really enjoyed the storyline because Gail Carriger has this very unique style of writing with dashes of wonderful humor and steampunk elements into the mix, so whether or not you're into the historical genre - or are not a fan of Carriger's previous work - just give it some time because it will eventually woo you over.

Even with characters with some pretty outrageous names (it's one of those things that Gail Carriger does all too well with), I thought every single one of them were quite entertaining. Especially the main character, Sophronia, who is super funny in all respects, and her much smaller supporting character, Pillover, who wasn't really in the book per se but I really hope he makes an appearance or two later on in the series because I absolutely adored him when he came onto the page, even with not knowing him so well yet. And honestly, if it wasn't for these characters, the story would have fell short for me so I'm glad to have a lot of these outrageous-named characters with their unique quirks and who made me laugh like . . . all the time! I'm sure they will be quite a hit with us modern day ladies! Hehe.

Overall, if you enjoy some fabulous humor and some outrageous characters with outrageous name, I think you're going to love ETIQUETTE & ESPIONAGE without a doubt. Think of the mysteries of Nancy Drew meets the quirks of The Iron Thorn meets the writing humor of Jane Austen. Intrigued yet? Well, go out and pick up a copy! The book is quite a hoot!

The Rating
4/5 stars

1 comment:

  1. Ooooh, I love the Parasol Protectorate books and you're so right, Carriger does humour SO well. I've just reserved this at the library so I can't wait to see what happens. :)


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