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kio wrote:For this month's discussion, I read "Etiquette and Espionage by Gail Carriger." Sophronia is a tomboy living in Victorian London. She'd rather climb a tree or rig a dumbwaiter than do embroidery or drink tea. When her mom sends her off to Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality, Sophronia discovers that her new finishing school is really a training school for spies and even some of the teachers are supernatural. One of her students, Monique de Paloose, is not who she seems. While pretending to be Mademoiselle Geraldine at Sophronia's house, she hid a prototype that everyone is after. What are her plans for the prototype? Who is Monique working for?
One element I noticed unique to this genre is the steam-powered technology. The airship is powered by coal, balloons, and steam. I also noticed a lot of furnishing made of polished wood and brass, which seems to be a common element in steampunk. There's also a romance element, not uncommonly romantic interest in the help. In this book, the romantic element comes between Sophronia and a Sooty (person who feeds the engines) names Soap. It seems each steampunk novel also seems to add their own twists on the rules in their steampunk world.
Overall, I'd rate this book 4 out of 5 stars. The story starts out a bit slow, but the characters are unique and entertaining. I liked the world-building in this book. The supernatural, flying, and shapeshifting elements seemed to fit well into the world without superimposing on the plot. I would definitely recommend this book to fans of paranormal mysteries.
Sounds good! I'll add it to my list.
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