Etiquette & Espionage

Oh Gail Carriger, how I love thee.  Set in the same universe as The Parasol Protectorate books, Etiquette & Espionage is set earlier. It introduces us, so far, to Genvieve LeFoux and Sidheag Kingair as kids though they are not the main characters. The main character is Miss Sophronia Temmennick, the youngest daughter of some wealthy country folks. She is constantly getting in trouble for being so very unladylike. Imagine a lady who climbs! At any rate, the young girl (fourteen in this book) is packed of by her mother to Mademoiselle Geraldine’s Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality.

This finishing school is not your ordinary finishing school. There’s a rove vampire as a teacher and the attendees do indeed learn both etiquette and espionage. They teach you how to set a perfect party…and to poison any number of your guests! Sophronia gets into trouble almost constantly but as she tends to save the day or bring important information forward, she tends to get away with it.

I was hesitant at first to pick this up as the main character is fourteen. I was worried that I couldn’t get into the story with a character who is so much younger than myself. I shouldn’t have worried. Gail Carriger has a wonderful writing style and I love her steampunk-y world. I love Alexia and Sophronia because they’re a lot like me personality wise. I also love the ridiculous names that she comes up with, such as Pillover.

I really can’t wait for the next book to come out. Rating: A.

Ever After!

Aaaaaaaaaaaaand I’m back. I’ve been away a while because I’ve been re-reading the Harry Potter series. Again. 🙂 At any rate, I’ve just read the new Hollows novel, Ever After by Kim Harrison. When is the next one coming out? Cause seriously, this one was good. It wasn’t really as frustrating as those early books were. Since this book has just recently come out, you are warned that HERE BE SPOILERS.

Rachel Morgan, our leading lady, has actually changed! She doesn’t rush head long in to dangerously stupid (or stupidly dangerous) situations. Thank god. That was really annoying. And she’s actually learned that she can get help from people! Oh my god! Okay, enough with the sarcasm (maybe).

In this book, she’s in trouble because a ley line that she accidentally created (which makes it her responsibility) is leaking ever after (the place where the demons live and allows for magic to be used). Only it isn’t her fault. True she created the line but someone has cursed it, causing the ever after leakage. That person (well, demon really) is the creepy Ku’Sox that demon she bested a few books ago. He is out for revenge in a big way.

Ku’Sox uses Rachel’s ex-boyfriend (who hasn’t appeared in a while) Nick Sparagamos as a familiar. Nick wants revenge on Rachel in a big way…though I can’t really remember why. I’d be tempted to go back and re-read those early books if Rachel Morgan wasn’t so god damn irritating in them. At any rate, Nick (or crap-for-brains as Jenks calls him) is abducting witch children with Rosewood Syndrome, the same deadly disease that Rachel had as a child. And if they’re cured, they will become day walking demons just like Rachel.

Not only that, but Ku’Sox kidnaps Trent Kalamack’s child Lucy as leverage. Trent is the only one who knows the complete Rosewood cure. So Rachel has to get the babies, get Lucy and stop the ever after from shrinking. And if she doesn’t? Oh the usual…death by Newt (the only other female demon, not the lizard).

I won’t go into too much detail but I really, really enjoyed this one. Rachel is finally, finally becoming a fully fleshed out character. And she finally freaking kissed Trent! I’ve been waiting for that to happen for several books now. I’m am really looking forward to the next one, whenever it may be released. Totally worth the read. I might even re-read it. Rating: solid A.