Finished it!

Crucible of Gold - Naomi Novik

Wow, well that was certainly a lot better than the last book.

 

The previous installment definitely felt like one of those 'bridging' books where not a lot happens, but everyone needs to be put in the right place so that they are ready for the next set of events. And those events delivered big time.

 

Random thoughts with no spoilers: Iskierka isn't quite as annoying and Granby is awesome. Hammond is still a douche, and I can see major trouble ahead with Emily and Demane. Bring it on!