Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Murder, Magic, and What We Wore by Kelly Jones Review

Title: Murder, Magic, and What We Wore
Author: Kelly Jones
Age Group: Teen/Young Adult
Genre: Historical Fiction/Fantasy
Series: Standalone
Star Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

I borrowed this book from my local library and reviewed it.

Murder, Magic, and What We Wore was the book club pick for April for one of the book clubs I go to. As soon as I was finished with The Astonishing Color of After, I began it and devoured it in a day and a half. I loved every bit of it. Rife with humor, intrigue, and magic, this book was like the loveliest Regency-era soiree I could imagine. Imagine Jane Austen with a dash of magic, a spunky heroine, political intrigue, humor, plenty of romance and surprises, and you’ll have something close to Magic, Murder, and What We Wore. It was such fun, and I was laughing, cheering, crying, and scratching my head throughout the book. It’s definitely one of the best books I’ve read recently, and honestly, I’m kind of sad that it’s over.

London, 1818. Annis Whitworth, 16, has just received terrible news: Her beloved father has passed away suspiciously on his way to see her and her aunt Cassia, and all of his funds have disappeared. She decides to become a spy for her country, as her father did before her. However, it turns out that a silly girl isn’t needed in the ranks, much to her infuriation. When she discovers she possesses the power to make glamours, clothes that literally conceal the identity of the wearer, she is even more determined to find out just what happened to her father, desperate to avoid becoming a governess. But in doing so, she finds herself wrapped up in a web of violence, secrets, intrigue, and perhaps a little romance.


I really liked this book! I wasn’t sure exactly what to expect, but what I got was a hilarious, whip-smart romp through London and beyond in the tumultuous year of 1818, narrated by the headstrong and determined Annis Whitworth, who was a treat unto herself. The pacing was breakneck; as soon as I started the book, I was brought into her world, rife with humor, political intrigue, romance, and more than a little bit of subterfuge. I was laughing, crying, cheering, and screaming all throughout the book. I loved Annis, who was spunky and funny and so unapologetically herself. Her Aunt Cassia, her maid, Millie, were also great standouts in the book; they were great characters. The suspense was also a wonderful element in the book; I was constantly guessing who might be behind Annis’s father’s murder until the final shocking conclusion. I loved this magical, funny twist on Jane Austen’s Regency era, and this book is one of the favorites of all the ones I’ve read recently. And the way the author tied other young adult authors’ characters into it—I just loved it. Honestly, I can’t find fault with this book in any way, a few days later. The bottom line: A lovely and wonderful romp through the Regency era, full of magic, humor, and panache, I loved Murder, Magic, and What We Wore! One of the best books I’ve ever read! One of my favorite book club selections of the year! Next on deck: The Fates Divide by Veronica Roth!

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