At the beginning of the story, the reader is at Elizabeth's funeral on the day that her wedding was to take place to the playboy of the town, Henry Schoonmaker. She is cast as New York's darling with the manners and dress of the upper elite who died before her time. Was it murder or just a mistake? The story then goes back to the beginning and takes the reader along on the journey to her engagement with Henry (when she is actually in love with the stable boy), her best friend Penelope's involvement with Henry, and then to the end of the story where we see her little sister, Diana, come running into Elizabeth's funeral late which makes a nice cyclical effect. We get to see why and how her funeral comes to pass.
It is a nice, light young adult read. One does not have to think about it much or analyze, but it is a good story. I finished it in about 4 hours, so it is a quick read too. I enjoyed the historical details of New York at the turn of the century when upper elite girls would come out at debutante balls and spend their early teens learning how to behave in "proper" society. Of course, there are always the ones who refuse to follow the rules like Penelope, Elizabeth's best friend or her little sister, Diana.
There are two sequels coming out in January: Rumors in paperback and Envy in hardback. Rumors is already published in hardback. The series is very similar to gossip girl (from what I have heard-I haven't read or seen Gossip Girl) but set back a hundred years or so.