Story summary: There is a boy named Jonathan, living an ordinary life in a cold, northern aerial city. There is a plague sweeping through the empire and killing women at incredible speeds. There is a newly discovered chemical, fantillium, which can connect people into shared illusions, speed up time, and even open gateways to other worlds. And there is Jonathan, revealed as a prodigy at controlling this dangerous and enticing substance--and the only hope to save his mother and sister and perhaps the whole empire.
- Steampunk, multiple universes, time travel, aerial cities: this book has it all.
- Light and wholesome, while still having darkness, danger, and adventure.
- The science seems quite iffy to me. At the very least, it is very unexplored. And maybe I just wasn't reading carefully enough, but illusioning seems weirdly contradictory. (It all takes place in your mind, yet it has real consequences like throwing people across rooms and transporting to other universes.)