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Etiquette & Espionage (Finishing School)

Etiquette & Espionage - Gail Carriger Maybe Gail Carringer's books just aren't for me. I didn't love her adult series, but I thought I'd give this one a try. It's set in the same basic universe as her adult books, so if you've read those you won't be lost.

Unfortunately, if you haven't read them (as I'd imagine most teens haven't) then you will be lost, because she doesn't really explain the world all that well. Of course, I'm not sure that I understand it all that well, even after reading the first few books of her adult series. There are werewolves and vampires and... dirigibles. I've decided that the mentioning of a dirigible within the first 10 pages of a novel is going to be my clue that a novel is trying really hard to be steampunk, and this one definitely does it! Other than that, this is a pretty standard Victorian era paranormal. The Victorian voice seems a little forced to me, but that might be because I read so many Victorian novels.

I would have really liked more information on how the finishing school functioned. It might be like Harry Potter, but to be honest that's what I liked about Harry Potter - the day to day workings of the school (I didn't like the last book, as it abandoned that setting!)

The book seemed rather young to me for young adult. I would recommend it to my middle school students, but I suspect that high schoolers would have issues with the age of the heroine and the need of the book to over explain everything. I'm giving 3 stars because I truly like the world that Carringer has created - I just wish that it was all more fleshed out.