This wasn't as quick of a read as A Great and Terrible Beauty (possibly because it's longer) but I still enjoyed it. I really think Gemma is a great protagonist and I really like how Libba Bray handled the romance in this novel. Like so many other female characters in young adult novels nowadays, Gemma is involved in a love triangle but she never lets her romance interfere with her main objective. It never overpowers the story and Gemma is never defined by it. I like how complex Gemma's relationship is with Felicity. How the two of them both adore each other and yet they're envious of one another. I think that's a realistic portrayal of some teenage friendships (and some adult ones). The plot moves a lot faster in this book and there's a lot more action in this one, most of it occurring outside of the realms, which I really liked. There's also a wonderful mystery to be unraveled and I'm a sucker for a good mystery. Would definitely recommend to anyone who has read the first book or for anyone who likes young adult fantasy novels.