Sara's Reviews > The Friday Society

The Friday Society by Adrienne Kress
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's review
Sep 09, 2012

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bookshelves: ebook, 100-in-2012
Read from June 29 to July 05, 2012

This is a steampunk story about three unusual young women in early twentieth century London.
Cora is a laboratory assistant to a wealthy, but secretive member of Parliament. Cora has lived as his ward since he plucked her from the streets of Whitechapel as a child. She is content with her life until the advent of an arrogant new laboratory assistant disrupts her routine. He is brash and annoying, but somehow attractive nonetheless. Cora's world is further disturbed when she finds out that girls in Whitechapel are being brutally attacked and murdered. These are girls she once grew up with, but the forces of law and order don't seem to care.
Michiko is a young Japanese woman who trained under a traditional samurai. When her teacher refused her anymore training due to her sex Michiko struck out on her own. She ended up as the assistant to an Englishman who gives fencing and self defense to ladies. He is not nearly as good with a sword as she is, but Michiko needs the position an so keeps her head down. Michiko's world is turned upside down one day at the market when a master smith recognizes her for what she is, a samurai. He gives her a sword fitting her training. Michiko feels that she must live up to the honor he has done her. She must expand her life beyond mere survival.
Nellie is a magician's assistant. Her master is kind and caring. Nellie's world is rarely troubled by darkness until the day a man stumbles into their apartments and dies. Suddenly, Nellie is catapulted into a world of danger and deception. Soon, a second man is killed and Nellie cannot turn her back on the mystery.
The three girls end up coming together by happenstance, but quickly form a bond that overcomes class distinctions and even language barriers. They set out initially to solve the murders, but quickly stumble on a much darker plot that threatens all of England.

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Reading Progress

06/29/2012 page 27
6.0% "So, I see what the writer is doing, trying to use modern slang in an historical novel to appeal to her audience. But seriously, the word "skeevy" is remarkably jarring in a book set in 1900's London. There are other things, the protagonist has a purse, some one is increadibly high. Things like that. Totally acceptable modern language, but they ring false against the rest of the story."

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