Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The Agency: cover reissues and contest

To Y.S. Lee, The Agency is…
A love letter to Victorian London, in all its glory and hypocrisy
A desire to see different kinds of people in historical fiction: the poor, the brown-skinned, the marginal
A teasing homage to the Victorian detective novel
A radical possibility for a poor girl in 1850s England

How I LOVED these books, let me count the ways:

1. Feisty female lead character who is a spy (also a diverse character)
2. Mary's intelligence and resourcefulness
3. The Agency is for women only
4. The romance 
5. Mary discovering her background (reminded me of Sally Lockhart)
6. James isn't going to "make" Mary do anything
7. Victorian London - love this setting
8. The action
9. The danger
10. Being in the Queen's household.
I wish there were more Mary Quinn stories but I'm really glad more people will discover them again. After I read the first one, I begged Candlewick for the ARCs of the rest. I rarely ask publishers for ARCs, but it was too hard to wait for these books to come out! Want to see what I thought of each book, check my reviews here.
Y.S. Lee has a Ph.D. in Victorian literature and culture and says her research inspired her to write Book One of The Agency trilogy. “Women’s choices were grim in those days, even for the clever,” she says. “The Agency is a totally unrealistic, completely fictitious antidote to the fate that would otherwise swallow a girl like Mary Quinn.” Y. S. Lee lives in Ontario, Canada.

Need more convincing? Read a sample chapter from book #1 or listen to the audio reading.

Have I sold you on these books yet? 
Well, you're in luck! Candlewick is gifting one lucky reader a complete set (all four books). 


holdenj said...

The covers look great! I have missed these, so you ten reasons sure make me interested in checking them out. Thanks!

Glauber Meyer Pinto Ribeiro said...

You forgot one: some righteous Kung Fu! :-)

heather said...

I love this series. Maybe not having a girl on the cover will get the picky kind of boys to read it, but I liked the girl and the thought that went into the covers, and now there's one less book cover with a POC. :(

Anonymous said...

I love this series and really like the new covers!

MB Kurspahic said...

I love Victorian period books and a mystery to boot. Can't wait to check these out!! Thanks for posting this.

Unknown said...

I can't wait to read these!

Unknown said...

These will definitely find an audience in my library (but I might have to read them first!).

Selenia said...

We have these books as eBooks at my library, and I love both their previous covers and their new covers. They've been on my wishlist and I love the reasons you listed for enjoying them, especially because they're Victorian mysteries!

Leslie Jackson said...

I haven't seen these, either and I look forward to reading them. I love the lettering on the covers!

jpetroroy said...


Sam said...

This sounds right up my alley! Thank you so much for this contest.

Annabelle Jones said...

I love these books! The new covers are super awesome, and I hope that they get even more people to read them!

WPL Teen Underground said...

Such a great series! I have it listed on both my historical fiction booklist and mystery booklist.

Miss Pippi said...

I was of fan of the first covers, but the new covers do have their own charm. The font is very eye catching! This is a series I definitely want to re-read. I would highly recommend the audiobooks!