This touches on themes of self-confidence and feminine empowerment, but I was really disappointed overall with this book (especially with the high reviews on amazon.com). The plot was all over the place, jumping around the chronology of the story to the point of distraction. The world-building felt very fluffy and anachronistic: while steampunk has proven that we don't have to have the same timeline of technology in all our stories, the umbrellas and telegraphs just felt out of place. The details seemed very American-fantasy, like the children playing jacks and hide-and-seek. The fantasy land that doesn't exist has a tutor teaching English and French.
I was bothered to the point of being unable to read through the book by the disorganization and inconsistencies in both plot and tone. While younger readers might not notice that so much, and younger girls might enjoy identifying with Amelia, a new "princess with moxie," I suppose, this one wasn't for me. I ended up skimming most of it, and then reading the last few chapters, which jumped around the chronology just as much as the beginning.