Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norell is an alternate-history that’s set in 19th-century England during the Napoleonic Wars. It’s based on the idea that magic once existed in England and that it will be brought back with the help of two practicing magicians: Gilbert Norrell and Jonathan Strange. The story centers on their relationship (or lack there of) as they make England into a land where anyone can perform magic.
I looked forward to reading this book, particularly because it is a Hugo winner. In the end, I was disappointed. I could not finish the book fast enough. I found it completely intolerable.
Wordy, wordy, wordy. It felt very unfocused (until the last 100 of almost 800 pages).
See my blog for a complete review (JS&MR does have some redeeming qualities).