Title: Soulless (Parasol Protectorate #1)
Author: Gail Carriger
Publisher: Orbit 2009
Genre: Steampunk; Paranormal
Rating: 5 / 5 stars
Reading Challenges: Steampunk
How I Got It: I own it!
Alexia Tarabotti is laboring under a great man 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 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 is 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?
I loved this book! A beautiful blend of steampunk and paranormal with some great characters. I really beginning to like these "supernaturals have come out" types of books. How do they integrate or not integrate into society? What is their role? Are they still dangerous or just fun oddities? These aren't Twilight supernaturals. There's always an edge of danger every time one appears. I just loved the world. Plus there was dirigibles and inventive weapons. And some gruesome experimental machines. The steampunk elements were all there. The storyline was fun with some great twists at the end. I appreciated the whodunit aspect and finding out with Alexia what was going on. It was a refreshing change from the third person omnipotent or the incredibly dense first person monologue. Alexia was a breath of fresh air. A confident spinster who operates within her academic passions as opposed to fashion and husband hunting. Nevermind that she gets the husband in the end, it makes sense for her evolution of her character and Lord Maccon is definitely dreamy. I'm also very attached to her vampire friend Lord Akeldama and werewolf Beta Professor Lyall. I loved this characters so much. There's more to them than what meets the eye. I hope they make appearances in the subsequent novels. I have the next three (fifth book hasn't been released yet) and am ready to dive in. Well, next week's readathon in which I must get rid of some library and Net Galley books first.