Marguerite is our guide in this interestingly-titled
steampunk tale, and she is a well-to-do young lady who
finds the governess's lessons boring. She'd rather be out
with the mechanical genius Claude, who makes brass koi carp
for the fishpond and a toy automated cricket for her. THE
PERILOUS JOURNEY OF THE NOT-SO-INNOCUOUS GIRL is going to
take her far from home.
Marguerite lives near San Rochelle and young Claude dreams
of going to Paris to further his skills rather than
maintaining automated gardeners on a big estate. When
Claude says that he's leaving, he gives Marguerite a female-
looking bot, a lady's maid in metal. Now she and her friend
Vivienne can safely walk to the village with this escort.
Marguerite has her coming out ball to think of, and the
exciting Captain Laviolette. But Claude joins the Royal
Corps of Engineers, which will be sent overseas to colonies
in New France and the prospect of war.
Marguerite has been spoiled, allowed to run wild and
to indulge her interests in steam automata. Now her father's
patience is exhausted and he orders her to marry. With no
son to be his heir, he is determined to make the girl a
suitable match. The contrary girl instead signs up for a
colonising journey to New France, with its savages and
soldiers, along with her mechanical maid.
I really had a good time reading this adventure. I got
into it straight away because the characters get well
established before we meet much alternative history. The
peril-beset trip to Montreal on the aership is well written
and opens up the world to us. While young adults are the
intended readers, pre-teens with an interest in steampunk
would love it - if you're old enough to read the early
Harry Potter books, you could enjoy this fun frolic.
Leigh Statham was born in Idaho and she has based her
adventure on the history of her own family who came as
colonists from France to Canada. Marvellously for the
times, the young women were each allowed to marry as they
pleased. I'm hoping THE PERILOUS JOURNEY OF THE NOT-SO-INNOCUOUS GIRL
will just be the first adventure in a
series. Marguerite experiences a journey of the mind and
heart as well as across the globe, making this a book to
Lady Marguerite lives a life most 17th century French girls
can only dream of: Money, designer dresses, suitors and a
secure future. Except, she suspects her heart may be falling
for her best friend Claude, a common smithie in the family's
When Claude leaves for New France in search of a better
life, Marguerite decides to follow him and test her
suspicions of love. Only the trip proves to be more
harrowing than she anticipated. Love, adventure and
restitution await her, if she can survive the voyage.