Ladies and gentlemen, may I present Kat, Incorrigible.
Yes, it's a book. Don't tell me you're surprised.
Here's another non-surprising factoid: two of my favorite things in the world are Jane Austen and Harry Potter. So when I first heard about this Middle Grade book a few months ago--a story that was inspired by Jane Austen, took place in Regency England and involved magic--I was absolutely intrigued. I knew I had to read it. I hoped very much that I would love it but I also knew that, with my high expectations, there was a good chance it could disappoint me.
It. didn't. In the least. I spent my Sunday afternoon reading the book and--when I wasn't laughing out loud--batting my eyelashes at it moonily.
As just an example, here are the first two lines:
I was twelve years of age when I chopped off my hair, dressed as a a boy, and set off to save my family from impending ruin.
I made it almost to the end of my front garden.
It only gets better from there. This book is hilarious, charming and gorgeously, effortlessly plotted. I'm in awe of how author Stephanie Burgis brought the period of Regency England to life while still making the relationship between her three main characters (three sisters) feel absolutely timeless. With the exception of certain vocabulary, they could be having those conversations in 2011, practically anywhere in the world. It's marvelous writing...it really is.
And speaking of those characters: I can't begin to describe how much I adore them. The heroines! The villains! The would-be villains! The tragic, romantic guy! (Seriously...they're all in there). And then, wonderful, glorious Kat. Our plucky, twelve-year-old heroine who can get herself out of any jam.
No doubt, kids will love this book. But I really think adults will love this book, too. Especially anyone looking for a massively fun page-turner and an exceedingly pleasant afternoon of reading. In my opinion, Jane Austen would most definitely approve.