Published: December 2012
Publisher: Dial Press
An action-packed tale of gowns, guys, guns –and the heroines who use them all
Set in turn of the century London, The Friday Society follows the stories of three very intelligent and talented young women, all of whom are assistants to powerful men: Cora, lab assistant; Michiko, Japanese fight assistant; and Nellie, magician's assistant. The three young women's lives become inexorably intertwined after a chance meeting at a ball that ends with the discovery of a murdered mystery man.
It's up to these three, in their own charming but bold way, to solve the murder–and the crimes they believe may be connected to it–without calling too much attention to themselves.
Set in the past but with a modern irreverent flare, this Steampunk whodunit introduces three unforgettable and very ladylike–well, relatively ladylike–heroines poised for more dangerous adventures.
I have been looking forward to reading The Friday Society since it came out last December, but for some reason it has taken until now for it to come into the library. I think the cover is just superb and having finished the book now, I can tell you that it is completely fitting.
We have the chance to really get to know Cora, Nellie and Michiko, and the way that they get to know each other is fun and believable. The are each very different from the other, but together they compliment each other and are able to make use of their unique talents in surprising and delightful ways. There is a little bit of romance, but only a very little, and the tentative relationship between Nellie and Jeffrey is just wonderful. Ms. Kress has a fabulous sense of humour and I was laughing out loud in places.
One of the things I particularly loved was that I was surprised more than once. I thought I had solved the mystery and in fact I was completely wrong, on more than one occasion. It was really quite refreshing. While everything is tied up neatly at the end, this is obviously just the beginning of a series and I look forward to reading more. The best way I can think to describe The Friday Society is a sort of Steampunk Charlie's Angels - but without Charlie. Wow, I think I've just dated myself terribly there!