One of my favorite things is when a book that seems to be loved by readers I respect lives up to the hype. This was definitely one of those novels, and I had so much fun reading it.
Alexia is a fantastic heroine - smart, quick-witted, and strong, she's not a Victorian lady to be taken lightly. I found her internal struggles with self-esteem to be quite honest, and I appreciated the way she didn't take herself too seriously, but also never dismissed her own abilities. Carriger's cast of characters was SO entertaining - I'm hard pressed to pick a favorite, but Lord Akeldama certainly tops the list.
This book was a true joy to read - Carriger clearly loves language, and plays with it to great effect. Her writing is witty and sharp, and had me laughing many times. As an example -
“The vampire's eyes were open, and he was staring at her intently. It was as though he were trying to speak to her with simply the power of a glare.
Alexia did not speak glare-ish.”
Moments like this were found throughout the book, making it easy to turn the pages. There were a few times that I thought the author might have played a bit loose with Victorian convention, but I suppose when you create and England that has accepted vampires and werewolves, you have a bit of license to change up the rules. This was one of the most fun novels I've read this year, and I'm looking forward to more adventures with Alexia.