This novel was nominated as Notable in the Older Readers Book of the Year 2017.
Lady Helen and the Dark Days Club / Alison Goodman
Cross Pride and Prejudice with Skulduggery Pleasant and you almost begin to describe this book. Lady Helen is a young aristocrat living in Regency London, about to be presented for her first Season. Everything moves as it should in Helen’s ordered world, until a young Lord shows her that not everything is as it seems and there’s a dark side to London she never imagined. As she comes into her powers, she has to decide between the comfortable world she knows and a new world of danger, darkness and excitement.
I really enjoyed this book and often forgot I was reading a YA novel. I enjoyed the character of Lady Helen, who seems like a believable product of her time. Women in historical novels can sometimes be a bit too modern, a bit too feminist and progressive, and I liked that Helen was reluctant to immediately abandon the safety and security of her stiff, upper-class society. It’s also adds a level of difficulty and danger to her new life; she has to stay within the frustratingly confining etiquette expected of her as a proper lady. Goodman clearly has a passion for the Regency era, and has put a lot of research into Helen’s world (down to the exact weather of each day!). I can’t wait to read the next book in this series and see what Lady Helen does next.
This book would suit older readers, 15+ yrs.