Kat, Incorrigible (US)/A Most Improper Magick (UK) (The Unladylike Adventures of Kat Stevenson #1)
Author: Stephanie Burgis
Publisher: Antheneum Books
Rating: 4 stars
Kat is the youngest daughter of Stevenson family. Witty and never concern about how a lady should behave, Kat is a handful for her Stepmama and her two older sisters. Then she found out she was born to be a Guardian with powerful magic, part of an Order to protect Society, and her life gets merrier! Planning to runaway to London so she could get a job and free her sister from marriage arrangement, help a love-struck guy who pretend to be highwayman to kidnap the girl he loves, or disguise herself to be the woman she hates the most, Kat always find a way to do something. But finally she realize what is the meaning of helpless when she meet a strong opponent, who willing to sacrifice Kat's family for his own benefit.
Kat, Incorrigible is a light-reading; something you read after a hard day full of work/school so you could feel relax and perhaps laugh a little bit. Set in Yorkshire, England 1803, this book offer a taste of Jane Austen's book with more enthusiast (or should I say unladylike) main character. Kat is definitely the star in this book. Although other characters are quite interesting, I found them quite predictable as well, unless probably Mr. Gregson. Kat's sisters, Angelina and Elissa are a bit similar to Austen's characters as well. Elissa remind me a bit of Jane for Pride and Prejudice. It doesn't mean Stephanie rip them off though; not that similar.
The conflict is typical of Jane Austen books; love, marriage arrangement, scandal in Society, and how to behave like a proper lady with a twist of magic. Kat inheritance the ability to do magic from her late mother; magic that so powerful that makes her eligible to be part of the Order of Guardian. But Kat doesn't really want it because all she wants is protect her family (and have a little fun while doing it). The fantasy element in this story is perfect; not too much to make you feel overwhelmed with it but enough to make the story more interesting. Even though Kat is powerful, she's not untouchable. Especially because her magic is still raw, she often did mistakes doing it. I prefer a realistic character, not someone too perfect, and Kat is quite realistic. Overall it's not a story that you have to take time to digest it; you just need to get along with the story and enjoy the ride.
With this book I declared that I favor middle-grade more than young adult. I like this kind of book; with a witty character who wont waste her life being angst and mooning over a super handsome guy. Don't get me wrong, I like YA but sometimes the lovey-dovey in YA is just too much for me to tolerate. But middle-grade offer more excitement and broader conflict for me compare to YA.