Finishing School Read-Along Launch + GIVEAWAY!


The FINISHING SCHOOL READ-ALONG hosted by Tressa @ Wishful Endings and I (Dena @ Batch of Books) has officially begun! There is still plenty of time to join if you haven’t done so yet. The linky is at the bottom of this post and you can go to the official sign-up here. You don’t need to be a blogger to join, you just need someplace online that’s public to post updates for the linky, or just leave a comment below saying you’d like to join if you don’t have a place to post.

Here is the schedule for the read-along so you can follow along with us (it’s about a chapter a day):

Nov 7: Curtsies, chapters 1-8
Nov 14: Curtsies, chapters 9 -16, epilogue, and final thoughts on the book
Nov 21: Waistcoats, chapters 1-8
Nov 28: Waistcoats, chapters 8-16 and final thoughts on book
Nov 29: Read-along wrap up and giveaway winner announced

Remember to use #FinishingRA on Twitter for updates. You can include Dena (@denabooks) and I (@tressherm) as well.

Now I’d like to welcome Gail Carriger to my blog!

Author Interview:

1. For those who may not be as familiar with your books and specifically this series, would you give us the basic gist of the characters and story?
Comedy of manners meets urbane fantasy meets espionage meets boarding school.

The Finishing School series is set in the same world as my Parasol Protectorate adult book, only 25 years earlier, and features a finishing academy located in a giant caterpillar-like dirigible floating over Dartmoor in which young ladies are taught to . . . finish . . . everything . . . and everyone . . . as needed. There is steampunk etiquette! There is well-dressed espionage! There is Victorian fake food. There are mechanical sausage dogs named Bumbersnoot.

2. What inspired you to write the Finishing School Series?
I’ve always been fascinated by the idea of girls’ boarding schools. I blame A Little Princess. However, I realized recently, as I was re-watching the BBC adaptation of Gaskell’s North & South, that I think this TV series may be to blame. There is a line where Mr. Bell says, “Have you meet Miss Latimer? Just returned from Switzerland and very much finished.” Or something like. Mr. Bell is a facetious character and I think he is meant to be contemptuously dismissing both the young lady and the very idea of women being made into mere representations of a minimalistic social ideal. But the line has always stuck with me. It made me think about the very idea of sending girls away from home to be finished, and what a powerful thing that could become, were they to learn a whole new set of social skills.

3. What have you loved the most about writing this series?
I’ve enjoyed casting my mind back and remembering my own high school experience (much more clearly than I thought I would). It’s surprisingly easy to regress 20 years. Either that or I never quite grew up.

4. The imagery with all the gadgets, vehicles, and period dress, is just amazing! What do you base the imagery off of, if anything?
Reality. The Victorians had some pretty oddball inventions already, I tend to mash a few of them together, or twist their purpose. Otherwise I just use my imagination to fill in a plot necessity.

5. What would be your favorite item of clothing if you were one of these characters?
The chatelaine.

6. The slang is so very fun and adds so much to this series. What are some of your favorites and their meanings?
I like them all! It’s fun to put old fashioned slang words, or made up ones, because they are perceived by modern readers as quite ridiculous but were taken very seriously back in the day. (This makes them that much more hilarious.)

7. Do you have a favorite scene or quote from the series that you would be willing to share with us?
Pretty much any scene involving Pillover. He is one of my favorite characters to write. Here is his introduction:

“What’s that?” she asked the girl, wrinkling her nose.

“Oh, that? That’s just Pillover.”

“And what’s a pillover, when it’s at home?”

“My little brother.”

“Ah, I commiserate. I have several of my own. Dashed inconvenient, brothers.”

― Gail Carriger, Etiquette & Espionage

8. What is one interesting thing about you that we may not know?
I’m really good at pinball.

9. When you get a chance to read, what type of books do you tend to grab?
I have pretty specific taste, I actually did a blog post on some of the tropes that I really gravitate towards as a reader. Check that out here.

I also do a read along book group, picking once book a month. I write a blog post about why I chose the book at the beginning of the month, and then write a review at the end. Skye runs a companion discussion via my Goodreads fan group.

10. Can you share a teaser for the fourth book, Manners & Mutiny?
Nope. Nice try, though.

Thank you so much Gail!

About the Books:

Etiquette and Espionage

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 a great trial to her poor mother. Sophronia is more interested in dismantling clocks and climbing trees than proper manners–and the family can only hope that company never sees her atrocious curtsy. Mrs. Temminnick is desperate for her daughter to become a proper lady. So she enrolls Sophronia in Mademoiselle Geraldine’s Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality.

But Sophronia soon realizes the school is not quite what her mother might have hoped. At Mademoiselle Geraldine’s, young ladies learn to finish…everything. Certainly, they learn the fine arts of dance, dress, and etiquette, but the also learn to deal out death, diversion, and espionage–in the politest possible ways, of course. Sophronia and her friends are in for a rousing first year’s education.

Set in the same world as the Parasol Protectorate, this YA series debut is filled with all the saucy adventure and droll humor Gail’s legions of fans have come to adore.

Curtsies and Conspiracies
Does one need four fully grown foxgloves for decorating a dinner table for six guests? Or is it six foxgloves to kill four fully grown guests?

Sophronia’s first year at Mademoiselle Geraldine’s Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality has certainly been rousing! For one thing, finishing school is training her to be a spy (won’t Mumsy be surprised?). Furthermore, Sophronia got mixed up in an intrigue over a stolen device and had a cheese pie thrown at her in a most horrid display of poor manners.

Now, as she sneaks around the dirigible school, eavesdropping on the teachers’ quarters and making clandestine climbs to the ship’s boiler room, she learns that there may be more to a field trip to London than is apparent at first. A conspiracy is afoot–one with dire implications for both supernaturals and humans. Sophronia must rely on her training to discover who is behind the dangerous plot-and survive the London Season with a full dance card.

In this bestselling sequel to New York Times bestselling Etiquette & Espionage, class is back in session with more petticoats and poison, tea trays and treason. Gail’s distinctive voice, signature humor, and lush steampunk setting are sure to be the height of fashion this season.

Waistcoats and Weaponry

Class is back in session…

Sophronia continues her second year at finishing school in style–with a steel-bladed fan secreted in the folds of her ball gown, of course. Such a fashionable choice of weapon comes in handy when Sophronia, her best friend Dimity, sweet sootie Soap, and the charming Lord Felix Mersey stowaway on a train to return their classmate Sidheag to her werewolf pack in Scotland. No one suspected what–or who–they would find aboard that suspiciously empty train. Sophronia uncovers a plot that threatens to throw all of London into chaos and she must decide where her loyalties lie, once and for all.

Gather your poison, steel tipped quill, and the rest of your school supplies and join Mademoiselle Geraldine’s proper young killing machines in the third rousing installment in the New York Times bestselling Finishing School Series by steampunk author, Gail Carriger.

Book Trailer:

Check out this fun book trailer for the series!  

Giveaway Time!

Enter to win the entire Finishing School series!

Ends Nov 28, 2014

Open internationally (as long as the Book Depository ships to you for free)

Entrants must be 13 or older or have their parent/guardian enter for them.  Winner must respond to my email within 48 hours or a new winner will be chosen.  Winner is chosen randomly.  Contest void where prohibited.  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Want to join the read-along? You can participate and much or as little as you want. Just add yourself to the linky and you’re good to go!

Previous Story
Next Story


  • Reply
    Ana Death Duarte
    November 2, 2014 at 8:58 am

    Unfortunately I will not be taking part in the read-along because I don't have them books… So, let's hope I am lucky and win them xD I know I'd love to! Thanks so much for the giveaway and the chance to win the entire series :3

  • Reply
    November 2, 2014 at 11:28 am

    i can't participate in teh read along because i don't have the book but they are on my wishklist! i do hope i will be lucky and win them so i can read them after
    thank you a lot for your generosity!

  • Reply
    Heather Dubay
    November 3, 2014 at 7:56 pm

    This is my favorite series in a long time. I am waiting (impatiently!) for Waistcoats & Weaponry! Such a fun storyline with unusual and unique characters.

    • Reply
      Heather Dubay
      November 3, 2014 at 7:58 pm

      I will read along with Waistcoats & Weaponry when I get it! 🙂

  • Reply
    aled ol
    November 20, 2014 at 7:50 am

    This looks like a great set of books

  • Reply
    Erin P
    November 25, 2014 at 4:07 am

    I read the first book but haven't read the second two because I don't have them. Thanks for the awesome chance at the giveaway!

  • Reply
    Natalie (Never Trust a Duck)
    November 25, 2014 at 4:16 am

    So sad I can't join in on the read along since I don't have them, but I do plan to get them soon!!! Thank you bunches for the giveaway!!!

  • Reply
    Holly Letson
    November 27, 2014 at 4:41 am

    I don't own the books, so I cannot join. But, I'd like to read them, so I'd love to win.

  • Reply
    Alisha S.
    November 29, 2014 at 4:08 am

    I haven't started this series yet but they sound very interesting and I would love to win! 🙂

  • Leave a Reply

    %d bloggers like this: