Etiquette & Espionage - Gail Carriger

 

Fourteen-year-old Sophronia is the bane of her mother's existence. Sophronia is more interested in dismantling clocks and climbing trees than proper etiquette at tea--and god forbid anyone see her atrocious curtsy. Mrs. Temminnick is desperate for her daughter to become a proper lady. She enrolls Sophronia in Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality.

But little do Sophronia or her mother know that this is a school where ingenious young girls learn to finish, all right--but it's a different kind of finishing. Mademoiselle Geraldine's certainly trains young ladies in the finer arts of dance, dress, and etiquette, but also in the other kinds of finishing: the fine arts of death, diversion, deceit, espionage, and the modern weaponries. Sophronia and her friends are going to have a rousing first year at school.

E & E is just flat out a fun, enjoyable read. The absurdity of young girls attending a school to teach them the art of information gathering and killing by using their feminine wiles cracked me up. (Although, spys probably have to learn this stuff, huh?) Oh well.  It was funny anyway. For instance, one night their homework was to do 6 sets of 100 eyelash flutters. HA!

 

Poor Sophronia. She just doesn't have a girly bone in her body. She really had to put a lot of work into her curtsy especially. In addition to not being very feminine, she doesn't come from the wealthiest family and she is a covert recruit - meaning she didn't know the truth behind Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality when she arrived. 

 

Even though she was thrust into a new world of deception, vampires, werewolves, and danger, Sophronia handled it all like a lady. I can't wait to see what happens in her second year at Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality.