[I won my copy through the Goodreads First Reads giveaway!]The synopsis and cover were enough to garner my attention, and I have to say the book looks even better in person. I'm a sucker for quality illustrations, especially one with a decidedly vintage flair, and the gothic image set my mind abuzz.From what I can gather this is actually a self-published novel (my first) which just added to my curiosity. In that vein it was a good introduction for me. Its written in an effortless way, where you feel like you're getting folded up within the world. The pacing is great, I never felt like it got too slow--it was always fresh. I liked the sense of mystery, and how steeped in shadow it felt. However, I don't know if it was just a stylistic choice (it did seem reminiscent of children's classics) but the long paragraphs seemed a bit odd to me, especially when containing dialogue. It made some spots unnecessarily hard to follow.For this kind of story the world-building and tone are of the utmost importance and I think it succeeded there. The characters were defined but not incredibly fleshed out. Lily, the protagonist, was purposefully shallow and I thought it was a bit much in places. Overall I liked the characters though so I can't say it was problem. I really enjoyed my read and will be holding onto my copy for sure. This was a very interesting and original story. I would say though that it felt like it was just one round of editing shy of being finished. I think with just a bit more polish this would've been a spectacular read. As it was it was very strong debut and I am eager to read more.