Saturday, October 17, 2009

Soulless by Gail Carriger

An Alexia Tarabotti Novel

Published:  2009
Genre:  Mystery, Steampunk, Vampires, Werewolves, and Romance
Paperback:  373 pages
Rating:  5

Inspiration: Gail's BIG FAT contest and this book works for my R.I.P. challenge too

Alexia Tarabotti is laboring under a great many social tribulations. First, she has no soul. Second, she's a spinster whose father is both Italian and dead. Third, she was rudely attacked by a vampire, breaking all standards of social etiquette. 

Where to go from there? From bad to worse apparently, for Alexia accidentally kills the vampire -- and then the appalling Lord Maccon (loud, messy, gorgeous, and werewolf) is sent by Queen Victoria to investigate. 

With unexpected vampires appearing and expected vampires disappearing, everyone seems to believe Alexia responsible. Can she figure out what is actually happening to London's high society? Will her soulless ability to negate supernatural powers prove useful or just plain embarrassing? Finally, who is the real enemy, and do they have treacle tart?

SOULLESS is a comedy of manners set in Victorian London: full of werewolves, vampires, dirigibles, and tea-drinking.

My thoughts:
In-a-word:  bluestocking

Fantastical glassicals!  Just as described, this is a fabulously fun Victorian romp involving supernatural creatures and others (for you to discover)!

The story starts out as a mystery. As the head-strong heroine pursues the truth, she finds herself in an adventure fraught with danger, science and romance set in a world with dandies walking the streets and dirigibles floating in the sky.

Historical trivia of the current events and culture made this book rich with lively details. Girly that I am, I was taken with the descriptions of the fashion and etiquette. 

Witty remarks and playful banter between the characters make this a fun read. I found myself chuckling and laughing out loud many times. Nothing like a fun book to bring some cheer.

And, there's a surprise cameo appearance by... well I'll leave this up to you find out.

Looking forward to further adventures with Alexia!

The Parasol Protectorate Series:
Changeless (release date: May 2010)
Blameless (release date: 2011?)

Blogosphere bit:

Alexia's BFF, Ivy, is into hats. I found this Victorian Touring Hat which I think would be a nice addition to her collection.

Read about Gail's book reading event that I attended in San Francisco.

I came across this article, A Soul's Weight by Mary Roach. Could this be the inspiration behind the character of Mr. MacDougall? In any case, this is an interesting article about the human soul that brings to mind the 2004 movie 21 Grams.

Imagination Designs
Images from: Lovelytocu