Classic Wells in both gorgeous world building and in it's interior, practical point of view character. Our teen runaway, Emilie, reminds me a bit of Kade or Wells' other pre-Raksura protagonists.
I thought a couple writing choices were interesting here. First is that Emilie spends most of her time either on her own or helped and mentored by another woman. The leading women are both quite different from each other, being different cultures (and species!), and she learns different things from them. It was nice to read, and I enjoyed how Emilie grew with them.
Secondly, though it was very much Emilie's story, it wasn't her adventure. Most of the story was spent in an effort to rescue various people of whom she'd never heard and had no real investment other than people she liked liked them (I want to find my mentor's father, I want to find my friend's wife). The rest was spent escaping immediate danger, but there wasn't a lot of personal investment in terms of whether the quest would succeed or not. She also didn't drive the story a lot of the time, though she did save everyone's butts and generally help out a lot. It's very much not a Chosen One story, which was a nice change, I thought.
The writing is very evocative, especially describing feelings of a variety of repressed people, and painting incredible landscapes. I also laughed a lot, though the humour runs between dry and sarcastic, particularly in Emilie's reflections on events.
Liked the ending, and look forward to the next one.