Etiquette & Espionage (Finishing School #1)
Fourteen-year-old Sophronia is a great trial to her poor mother. Sophronia is more interested in dismantling clocks and climbing trees than proper manners—and the family can only hope that company never sees her atrocious curtsy. Mrs. Temminick is desperate for her daughter to become a proper lady. So she enrolls Sophronia in Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality. But Sophronia soon realizes the school is not quite what her mother might have hoped. At Mademoiselle Geraldine's, young ladies learn to finish...everything. Certainly, they learn the fine arts of dance, dress, and etiquette, but they also learn to deal out death, diversion, and espionage—in the politest possible ways, of course. Sophronia and her friends are in for a rousing first year's education.
This was your choice of books for me to read this month and it was so much fun!! I just dived straight in and found myself enchanted with the idea of a finishing school where young ladies learn manners and subterfuge in a world where werewolves and vampires are the height of fashion and steampunk rules.
Sophronia is a troublesome fourteen year old who keeps getting into scraps at home, so ends up being shipped off to Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality. What her parents don’t realise is that Mademoiselle Geraldine’s trains young girls in the art of espionage, assassination and defence of the realm, while using the correct cutlery and curtseying fashionably. Sophronia is sharp witted and quick and not afraid to take risks, while the rest of her friends she meets at school area variety of young ladies – including one or two who might be familiar to those you have read Gail Carriger’s other series, the Parasol Protectorate. It reminded me so much of the boarding school books I read a young child (Enid Blyton and Trebizon) or Hogwarts. Where the teens manage to solve more mysteries than the adults – and take more risks!
The machinery in the world are amazing – from the mechianimals to the robotic ‘staff’ there is no end of the imagination used to create a truly unique world. There is so much happening and the characters are just fantastic fun. I actually feel the world suits a YA story better than a regular story – and I can’t tell you how much fun discussions of proper manners and correct protocol are! If you want a great summer read than pick this book up – and I promise you will have a blast!
Recommended for fans of Kelley Armstrong and Richelle Mead. 9 out of 10