Book Review: Valour and Vanity by Mary Robinette Kowal

[Reposted from my Goodreads account.]

[five stars out of five on their rating system]

Full disclosure: Mary is a dear, dear friend of mine, in addition to writing books that are aimed DIRECTLY AT ME as a reader. I would have a very difficult time not enjoying this book.

Every book in this series pleases me more. Not just because this is a romance novel with a heist plot, WHICH IT IS. (She describes it as “if Jane Austen wrote Ocean’s Eleven”). It reminds me very much of the TV show Leverage, but with glamour (magic in this world), pirates, Lord Byron, nuns, boat chases, and a street puppeteer. In Murano, which is like Venice only smaller.

Just as importantly, we get to see Jane and Vincent navigate what comes AFTER happily ever after, which is the hard work that it takes to keep a healthy, loving relationship together, especially when setbacks and bad life things happen. They handle their challenges with the wit and grace you’d expect, and good humor, and more emotional honesty than you might think. I have come to love these characters, and I’m looking forward to book 5, Of Noble Family, which will close the series.


About Lynne M. Thomas

Lynne M. Thomas is a nine time Hugo Award winning editor and podcaster. In her day job, she is Head of the Rare Book and Manuscript Library at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
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