Will Perks is my favorite new author. To find out what I love about his writing in general, read my review under "The Boy Band has a Terrible Secret", but in short, Will's prose and plotting are intelligent and seemingly effortless, and his characters fascinating.
"A Festival of Skeletons" features some truly unique characters, to the point of being downright kooky, but because it's a fantasy setting they're colorful and enjoyable rather than ridiculous. Joshua, with his *shiny, shiny*, is endearing. It shouldn't be the case, and I'm not sure if that's a testament to Will's writing or insight on my moral compass.
There's definitely a comedic flavor to this story, often understated, sometimes almost slapstick-ish, well-balanced with suspense and drama. It's not your usual weighty, high-stakes, bigger-than-life fantasy novel, and once you get into the story, it's quite fun.
There are multiple POV, but Will does not fall prey to novice writer mistakes and avoids head-hopping within scenes, thankfully. He skillfully navigates to the right POV for each scene, furthering the mystery while allowing the reader to try to piece it together from all the disparate bits of knowledge each character has.
My one criticism of the other two Will Perks books I've read so far doesn't hold true here: the ending felt complete and didn't leave me wanting. I'm already looking forward to reading this story again, because I suspect it will be even better the second time through.
(reviewed 4 months after purchase)