Curtsies & Conspiracies by Gail Carriger
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Book #2 in the series kicks off with the girls in Sophronia's class at the floating Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality undergoing their six-month evaluations, the results of which put everyone out of sorts. Sophronia is grateful for the friendship of Vieve and the sooties in the boiler room, and visits them even more frequently. It's with their assistance that she begins to work out the threads of the complicated machinations afoot regarding a new guidance valve and a test of aether travel. Many factions seem to have a stake in the outcome, from Picklemen to flyway men, vampires to government agents, and it's up to Sophronia to figure out who is trying to kidnap her friends Dimity and Pillover, and for heaven's sake, why?
Although I still haven't managed to work out exactly who the Picklemen are and what their agenda is, I thoroughly enjoyed this fast-paced romp through an alternate 19th century England where werewolves and vampires live side by side with ordinary humans, and most of the servants are mechanical. It was interesting to watch Sophronia grow and learn the hard way that sometimes her actions have unexpected consequences--a lesson all teenagers need, even the exceptionally mature ones.
For readers' advisors: setting and story doorways are primary. No sex or bad language. Sophronia is in a bit of a love triangle, but so far everyone is very formal and respectful.
I received a free ebook copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.
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