Author: Jennifer Bradbury
Publication Date: May 24, 2011
Source: Purchased audiobook for LMC
Audiobook Reader: Elissa Steele
Audiobook Publisher: Listening Library
Audiobook Length: 8 hours 23 minutes
About the Book: Agnes Wilkins is standing in front of an Egyptian mummy, about to make the first cut into the wrappings, about to unlock ancient (and not-so-ancient) history.
Maybe you think this girl is wearing a pith helmet with antique dust swirling around her.
Maybe you think she is a young Egyptologist who has arrived in Cairo on camelback.
Maybe she would like to think that too. Agnes Wilkins dreams of adventures that reach beyond the garden walls, but reality for a seventeen-year-old debutante in 1815 London does not allow for camels—or dust, even. No, Agnes can only see a mummy when she is wearing a new silk gown and standing on the verdant lawns of Lord Showalter’s estate, with chaperones fussing about and strolling sitar players straining to create an exotic “atmosphere” for the first party of the season. An unwrapping.
This is the start of it all, Agnes’s debut season, the pretty girl parade that offers only ever-shrinking options: home, husband, and high society. It’s also the start of something else, because the mummy Agnes unwraps isn’t just a mummy. It’s a host for a secret that could unravel a new destiny—unleashing mystery, an international intrigue, and possibly a curse in the bargain.
Get wrapped up in the adventure . . . but keep your wits about you, dear Agnes.
My Thoughts: This is a book I ordered for my LMC and couldn't wait to read. As these things usually go... I never picked it up. By the time the order arrived I had so many other books to read and I wanted to put it out for students to check out too! I bought the audiobook for my LMC when I was at the NCTE conference in November. I finally listened to it this past week. It was such a delight! I enjoyed the story and thought the narration was perfect. I will certainly be book talking it to my students next year!
Wrapped is historical fiction. It's also a mystery. And an adventure. And a romance. See why it hooked me?!? I have read so many books set in the same time period but Wrapped still felt new and fresh. It made me want to go back and learn more about things like "unwrappings" and Napoleon's many rises and falls. No other historical book has done this!
Agnes was an engaging (if slightly unbelievable) character. I loved her love for "A Lady" novels and her propensity to quote from them in other languages when nervous. (Jane Austen wrote under the name "A Lady.") I also appreciated that she was a smart and witty and yet still a young lady. Sure, she didn't sit around and just wait to be married off. But she wasn't against all things feminine either. Too often I think when authors try to portray females of this time period as intelligent they also make it so they oppose all things "girly" like dresses and balls and that sort of things. I like a girl who can be both intelligent and a fan of fancy dresses!
Wrapped was an enjoyable read. While the mystery wasn't much of a mystery for me it was still fun to watch as Agnes and company pieced together the clues. If you're an audiobook fan I highly suggest listening to this one. The narration and pacing were very well done! It really added to the story.