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I love mustelid haberdashery, vinho verde wine, and wensleydale with fruit.

Shades of Milk and Honey

Shades of Milk and Honey  - Mary Robinette Kowal I want, so badly to give this book 5 stars, but I can't quite do it.

Don't get me wrong, I love this book, but I can't quite bring it to the "it's amazing" level.

It is precisely what everyone says it is (including the author herself) - a book modeled on Jane Austen's writing. I adore Austen's writing, so it didn't surprise me when I enjoyed it. It's a beautiful regency romance, with magic thrown in. There's the whole upper-class society stratification and intrigue with that. There is a whole lot of beautiful writing and wonderful detail. The book is never surprising (at least there was nothing surprising or unexpected to me), and it's all-in-all very gentle. It's pretty much historical magical-realism.

The only place where the book really falls short, in my opinion, is that the author borrows too heavily from Austen's characters. If you are very familiar with Austen's writing, you will be able to exactly pinpoint what characters she drew from. In many cases, when a character does something, I can point to which character, book, and scene a trait or action is taken from. It's a little too borrowed. If one is not as familiar with Austen, the book might be better for them, in fact, some things might actually come as a surprise (though the book is not an overly twisty tale and any one can see where the story is moving).

Still, it was a good book, and it was an immensely enjoyable read.

Update: When I wrote this review, I had decided I would probably read the sequels, but after some time, the charm wore off and I decided against it, there are too many books that I want to get to, and this series didn't feel like it would keep the love for me.