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Extended Audio Sample Etiquette & Espionage, by Gail Carriger Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (4,229 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Gail Carriger Narrator: Moira Quirk Publisher: Hachette Book Group Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Finishing School Series Release Date:
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While it is a challenge to curtsy like a lady, it is quite another feat to throw a knife like you mean to kill. Welcome to Finishing School.

Sophronia at age fourteen is a pest in the eyes of her mother. A tomboy more curious about the inner workings of a clock and the joys of climbing a tree than she is about etiquette at tea time, Sophronia is disappointing, and not just because of her horrid curtsy. Mrs. Teminnick, her mother, enrolls Sophronia in Mademoiselle Geraldine's Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality. Surely this will turn Sophronia into the proper young lady she ought to be.

There is one catch to this whole finishing school business, and it lies in exactly the kind of finishing these girls were meant to complete. These excellent students do learn the skills of proper dance, dress and manners, but they also learn how to appropriately kill divert, deceive, spy, and handle a weapon against all foes.

Sophronia and her classmates are in for a wild first year, indeed.

Gail Carriger is the pseudonym for Tofa Borregaard. She is both archeologist and author of steampunk fiction. Her second novel Changeless placed her on the New York Times best seller list, as did her third novel Blameless. She credits the travel journals of the Victorian era as well as the writings of Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, and PG Wodehouse as influences on her style of prose and plotting.

It’s one thing to learn to curtsy properly. It’s quite another to learn to curtsy and throw a knife at the same time. Welcome to Finishing School.

Fourteen-year-old Sophronia is the bane of her mother’s existence. More interested in dismantling clocks and climbing trees than proper etiquette at tea—and god forbid anyone see her atrocious curtsy—Mrs. Temminnick is desperate for her daughter to become a proper lady. She enrolls Sophronia in Mademoiselle Geraldine’s Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality.

But little do Sophronia or her mother know that this is a school where ingenious young girls learn to finish all right, but it’s a different kind of finishing. Mademoiselle Geraldine’s certainly trains young ladies in the finer arts of dance, dress, and etiquette—but also in how to finish in other ways: the fine art of death, diversion, deceit, espionage, and the modern weaponries. Sophronia and her friends are going to have a rousing first year at school.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Carriger deploys laugh-out-loud bon mots on nearly every page…Amid all the fun, the author works in commentary on race and class in a sparkling start to the Finishing School series.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “Moira Quirk’s narration is a delight as she pulls from a wide vocal range to create her characters. From the proper British mean girl to the tinny-voiced machine, each voice has a unique sound and matches the humor of the story. It all makes for a rollicking good time.”


  • “Carriger’s YA debut brings her mix of Victorian paranormal steampunk and winning heroines to a whole new audience…with cleverly Victorian methods of espionage, witty banter, lighthearted silliness, and a ship full of intriguingly quirky people.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “[A] delightfully madcap espionage adventure.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “If spunky Lady Sybil from Downton Abbey happened onto a steampunk set, she might look a lot like Sophronia Angelina Temminnick.”

    Shelf Awareness

  • “Blending intrigue and elements of the school story, Carriger introduces teen readers to a supernatural-meets-steampunk world full of action and wit.”

    Horn Book

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A 2015 Grand Canyon Reader Award Nominee for Tweens

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Loren | 2/15/2014

    " Can I please have a mechanimal just like Bumbersnoot?!?! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Elena Boteva | 2/10/2014

    " That was great. Can't wait for the sequel. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by 1110cg | 2/8/2014

    " The unique character names and style of writing make the story creative and unlike most other YA books I have read before. The Steampunk spy edge gives it a rememberable touch. I can't wait for the next three books in the series. Curtsies and Conspiracies, the sequal to Etiquette and Espionage is expected to come out in November, and Carriger is currently writing the third book, Waistcoats and Weaponry. It does take a few pages to get used to the nineteenth century slang, yet by the time the book is over, you miss it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by katie | 2/4/2014

    " Frothy, silly, a fun diversion. Essentially a YA prequel to her other series. "

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