The Girl with the Steel Corset
Title: The Girl with the Steel Corset
Author: Kady Cross
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Pub Date: 06/01/2011
Nominate for Teens Top 10: Yes
Convince us to read the book: This book is going to be the Book-Zero for an entire new frontier in teen literature. It is the only Steampunk book I've read, and now I am scanning all of the shelves in the libraries for anything like it. Cross expertly turned the Victorian-era aspects of the book into its own character which aided Cross in the telling of the main characters. I also like the romance and thought both were adorable and actually believable which is hard to come by sometimes in teen fiction. It didn't feel orchestrated and seemed to follow a natural progression with the plot which was really satisfying.
Compelling aspects of the book: I thought the background on the automatons was actually really interesting. It was so complex, like Cross had actually mapped and drawn all of this complex machinery herself. She was her own Emily and her machine-model was this book. It was fascinating, and the best part was that it all seemed actually plausible.
Were you disappointed with the book at all: I was not disappointed at all by this book, maybe because I went into the novel not really having any expectations or previous baggage. If I did have any previous notions, this book just shot them out of the water!
Cover: I thought the cover was brilliantly portrayed. It was intriguing and definitely reflected the book's plot and mood. The cover is definitely what drew me in.
Age Range: 14-18+
Quality: 4Q Better than most
Popularity: 4P Broad general teen appeal
Comments: I would recommend this book to pretty much anyone who had a few hours to spare (or was willing to create a few hours that they could spare). I loved the characters, the plot, the setting, pretty much everything appealed to me. Cross weaved her imagination so well into the Victorian setting that it was easy sometimes to forget that this stuff didn't actually exist in history. You just accepted for the duration of this book that this was a new history, retold, that she had just discovered and decided to write down. It was brilliant, and I envy her writing talent.