I received this book through LibraryThing's Early Reviewer program. The description of the book led me to expect something a bit different than what I actually encountered, though. I have to say that I did not really enjoy this book. I made it through the whole thing and can honestly say that I've read worse, but it just wasn't to my taste.
To begin with, the characters are very flat. Details about them, their past, who they really are, etc. are given out only as necessary. I never felt that any of the characters were really real. By the end of the book Victor is almost three dimensional, but not quite. We know a little of his past and present - but nothing that makes you feel like you could meet him in person in real life.
Secondly, the place descriptions and scenery seemed very random to me. I know next to nothing about Paris, let alone Paris in 1889. I found the constant place association via street name to be very confusing. In addition, the Expo was depicted as an enormous circus of revelry. I couldn't help but view the majority of Paris as having been taken over by ludicrous sights and exotic vendors. Even at the conclusion of the book, I couldn't be sure that I had the proper impressions of exactly where this book too place.
Last, I think the story itself was lacking something. The plot was so basic (which isn't always a bad thing) and the end result so anti-climactic that I felt a little cheated. It was like sitting through a three hour movie that could have been adequately summed up in a half-hour television show.
Perhaps this is what a "real" mystery novel is like. I don't have a basis for comparison as I tend to read the thriller/suspense flavor of mysteries. If that's what you're looking for, this book is not for you. If you want a somewhat aloof who-done-it that doesn't require a commitment to the characters, you might enjoy this.