Described as "exotic", "enchanting", "dazzling"--I'll give it an "A" for wonderfully descriptive with interesting characters and a dab of Shakespeare. But the narration is a bit too, melodramatic and the back-to-back labyrinths get to be a little much. Overall, it missed that one ingredient that could have made it great. My first instinct-- there was very little turn-of-the-century structure--could have added richness. Then it hit me. The reason Summit picked this up so fast is not for its comparable literary quality (Harry Potter comparison) but because it reads more like a screenplay than a novel. When you take a step back, the chapters are simply set directions injected with dialogue. Final answer--Like a good piece of chocolate, it's worth the diversion but don't expect a gourmet meal.
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