AUTHOR: GAIL CARRIGER
SERIES: PARASOL PROTECTORATE, #2
GENRES/ SUBJECTS: PARANORMAL, ROMANCE, STEAMPUNK, HISTORICAL
Alexia Maccon, the Lady Woolsey, awakens in the wee hours of the mid-afternoon to find her husband, who should be decently asleep like any normal werewolf, yelling at the top of his lungs. Then he disappears; leaving her to deal with a regiment of supernatural soldiers encamped on her doorstep, a plethora of exorcised ghosts, and an angry Queen Victoria.
But Alexia is armed with her trusty parasol, the latest fashions, and an arsenal of biting civility. So even when her investigations take her to Scotland, the backwater of ugly waistcoats, she is prepared: upending werewolf pack dynamics as only the soulless can. She might even find time to track down her wayward husband, if she feels like it.
Another fun adventure, and just as enjoyable as the first book. I love Carriger’s style of language and mannerisms, the bantering dialogue and the over-the-top action.
The characters are still wonderful. Lord Maccon is around for a lot less of the action, but he’s being a bit of an ass anyway, so it’s no real loss. Alexia is a working woman now, with a prestigious, if secret, job on Queen Victoria’s supernatural council. This gives her a bit more freedom and makes her even more bad ass. The other female characters are a lot of fun too — love-struck Ivy, bitchy Felicity, the mysterious inventor, Madame Lafoux and the formidable Sidheag Maccon, Conall’s many-greats granddaughter.
This instalment adds another staple of Victoriana, the remote and bleak Highland Castle which I loved. It’s the perfect place for the grumpy, neglected werewolf pack, who were great fun to see Conall interact with, especially all the scuffles and power-plays. This one also feels more steampunk than the last, and has airships! Be still my heart. I loved the practical way the author and Alexia approach the idea — weighted down dress hems, helium leaks etc.
The only thing I wasn’t keen on was the ‘twist’ at the end. It was pretty heavily foreshadowed and a bit of a cliche anyway. I hated how both Maccon and Alexia reacted. But, I’m still looking forward to the next book as this is such a light and fun series so far.