Title- Etiquette & Espionage (Finishing School #1)
Author- Gail Carriger.
Publish date- 2013
Publisher- Little, Brown.
A training school for young ladies to learn etiquette is the last place Sophronia wants to be sent, but when she arrives, unwillingly, she finds the school happens to be... unusual, to say the least, and not all of their subjects are quite as predictable as she might have imagined.
I will briefly defend my honour.
I have decided that it isn’t actually My own fault, if I don’t end up reading a book for 4-5 months (over a year in some dire, current cases) because, very simply, I am a reader. And also a reviewer.
Us reviewers are, I think, avid readers as a whole already, but having books to review, while being glorious and thrilling and really incredibly lovely, does rather make things stack up.
I wouldn’t change it. I might make myself a faster reader, but maybe I wouldn’t.
Even right now, when I am putting every book that isn’t part of a series (Catherynne M. Valente and Sarah J. Maas are exempt from this clause) through a two month wait list (it is usually shorter, but: I’ve been away!) before adding it to my tbr officially, things are still stacking up. So it took me longer than I would have liked to get to Etiquette and Espionage, but oh, I did enjoy it.
Set, for the most part, on a flying dirigible/balloon that functions as a school for young ladies to learn the fine arts of etiquette and killing, poisoning and fighting, the story features an array of characters who are intriguing and enjoyable to spend time with, if too few get the descriptive backgrounds they deserve. Sophronia, the protagonist, is, in a word, brilliant. She goes through some interesting character development as the story goes along, and while one might wonder if she lost a few of her more adventurous qualities as she was refined, I’d say she just learnt to channel them more carefully.
A story that is wonderfully imaginative, comedic and written with whole passages of one liners, banter and, basically, joy, this is a most promising series starter.