Magical books, a wicked Countess, three lonely orphans, funny characters, a strange wizard, and a hidden land.
What's not to like?
Well, those things can be wonderful. But whether or not they're interesting...now that depends on how the story is put together.
For me, this one didn't quite cut it. It was fascinating for a good 100 pages, funny and intense and sweet. Then it started fluctuating between interesting and boring, until around 220 pages I had had enough. I didn't care enough about the characters; one had just been seriously injured and I didn't even really care very much. The Countess turned out to be very different from her original creepiness, which actually took away the creepy in her character and, to me, made her like every other evil witch in stories. There were actually dwarves (!) which shouldn't surprise me but for some reason it did and I didn't like it. And then there was a strange time-warp that I didn't feel was properly explained.
Now, this this an entirely bad book? Most definitely not. A lot of what I read was great, and even the un-awesome parts were written well. I just lost patience with it, having read only 220 pages in a whole week... (I can normally finish a book the size of The Emerald Atlas, about 400 pages, in less than four days...) Sorry, time to move on.
Should you read this book? That most certainly depends on you, as the reader.
Do I recommend it? Not necessarily, but I won't say I don't, either. There are just others I would rather see someone reading. (Such as: 100 Cupboards, Leepike Ridge, The Roar, The Clockwork Three, The Legend of Holly Claus, or Museum of Thieves.)