Publisher: Harcourt Childrens Books
Publication date: 2003
Kate and Cecelia are apart for the season, but that doesn't mean they can't correspond. Through their letters, we learn that there is a lot of dangerous stuff happening, most of it revolving around a chocolate pot. Kate is mistaken for someone else and nearly poisoned. Cecelia notices there is someone spying on her and her cousin. With all that danger, they should be running; instead they are diving head-first into the world of magic.
Things I Liked:
The letters back and forth were so entertaining and witty. I had a blast trying to keep up with the antics of Kate and Cecelia. Not only are they not your typical Victorian ladies, but they certainly don't mind defying convention on a regular basis. The mix of fantasy and historical fiction is so well done that you begin to truly believe there is a Royal College of Wizards and an enchanted chocolate pot. A lot of fun. Here's a taste:
Do you ever wonder if driving a team is like dancing? Being where you're wanted when you're wanted, with no words, just hints? I never thought of it from the horse's point of view, but perhaps it is, and perhaps that is why good dancers and good drivers are both rare and highly thought of. p 31Things I Didn't Like:
I have to admit, I had a hard time getting into it. I've liked several epistolary style books before, but they tend to have a certain lack of excitement that comes from relaying events through letters and not being right in the middle of it. The other thing was that I kept getting the girls confused and who was where and which man they would probably end up with. This might have been sheer laziness on my part, or the fact that I was on vacation, but I still have a hard time remembering who is who in this one. I probably just need to read the next one. :)
Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke
Dreamhunter by Elizabeth Knox
BOOK CONTENT RATINGS:
Overall rating: ***
Do you ever read books that you really want to love but somehow it was just a like-it book?
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