I meant to blog about this book while I was still reading it, but I got sidetracked and finished it before I got the chance to post. Hence "What I Read" instead of "What I'm Reading."
I loved this book so. Freaking. Much.
I am extremely picky about all of my reading, but in particular I am picky about my fantasy and science fiction reading. I'm so picky that I don't even like Harry Potter, to give you an idea about the stringent nature of my standards.
Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell has almost all of the things I look for in a fantasy novel: a detailed, "textured" world; a logical and coherent system of magic; conflict that's palpable and specific; an antagonist who has motivations for his actions (and bonus point for moral ambiguity: I don't think it's much of a spoiler to say that the antagonist doesn't even realize that what he's doing is wrong). I just wish the female characters were less boring, more important, and had more agency, but you can't have it all.
I'm so happy I finally got around to reading this!