A Spy in the House (The Agency Book 1) by YS Lee
Genre: YA/historical mystery
Review: ASitH suffers from a common YA malady: it feels thin. Well-drawn characters and Mary’s intriguing past help, but the setting wasn’t entirely immersive or believable, and Mary’s failure to consider certain possibilities made me wonder if the Agency was wise in employing her. Nonetheless, it was a fun, if fluffy, romp. I enjoyed it, but won’t look for the sequel.
A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray
Genre: YA historical paranormal
Review:: AGaTB hints at much beneath the surface. The solution to the central mystery may fail to surprise many readers, but the paranormal elements are fresh and mysterious, and the girls come alive as not-always-sympathetic individuals. Bray’s writing style should engage older audiences and remain accessible to the younger, though the girls’ immaturity may wear on readers outside the target market.
Blameless by Gail Carriger
Genre: Historical paranormal
This series continues to charm me, and if you enjoyed the first two books, Blameless should be a welcome continuation. It feels like a “bridge” novel, a segue between books 2 and 4; as such, it is a remarkably quick read and the conclusion is not entirely satisfactory. Buy it as an entertaining link between two (hopefully) more substantial installments.
Kate Marshall lives, writes, and studies (generally in that order) in Seattle. She is the Assistant Editor at Beneath Ceaseless Skies, a magazine of literary fantasy.