Sabriel has an amazing world building. The Charter system is well thought out, solid, and certainly it is embedded in every aspect of the story. Fantasy is true fantasy in the sense that it is imagined and it is lived in, rather than serving as merely story device, an ad hoc. (That's why it's called high fantasy - I'd better read more of it from now on)
I don't feel any particular attachment to any character in the story, but I am definitely in love with the magic system. It's so rich and so full of potential. I hate zombies, undead, whatever, but Sabriel nevertheless does not bore me. The story's atmosphere somehow reminds me of Full Metal Alchemist as well, though I don't know why. Probably because there is also a modern army with guns, tanks, sophisticated weapons, that exists side by side with magic (FMA is alchemy and is called "science" though). It's not a pseudo-medieval world, but not one too tech-smart in the future either. It's suspended in a period similar to late 19th and early 20th. And I think I love that atmosphere.