This was a book with lots of good features. There is the basic story of an orphan being taken from the orphanage to serve as a maid in a wealthy household. The master of the house is an alchemist, so there is magic to make things exciting. Then there is the mystery of children disappearing from the neighborhood. And the character of Rose is a very likable girl. She works hard, has realistic plans for her life, and is loyal to her friends (old and new). Rose's relationships with other members of the household demonstrate her courage and generosity - whether she is saving the alchemist's apprentice, Freddie, from an experiment that's gone out of control, or helping her fellow servant, Bill, polish the chandelier - Rose always tries her best. She will need all her courage and determination to save the missing children before it is too late.
The story balances humor with danger and keeps pulling you along to see what will happen next. You find yourself admiring how Gustavus the cat has everyone treating him like royalty, or wondering what new tantrum the alchemist's daughter, Isabella, will pull. I had to laugh at how the matrons in the orphanage "were convinced that the orphans' morals would be forever destroyed if they so much as breathed the same air as a boy." If you like stories of magic and mystery, then you should give this one a try.
I read an e-book provided by the publisher through NetGalley. On the author's website you can read the first chapters of some of her books, send her an e-mail, or leave a note on the message board.