Wednesday, December 10, 2014

SOULLESS by Gail Carriger: My First Steampunk

I've been wanting to read this one since I enjoyed Gail Carriger on a Sci/Fi panel at ALA a few years back. I loved it! I really didn't know what to expect. I've been searching for a Steampunk novel to read for a while, but haven't really stumbled upon anything that intrigued me. So, I went back to this one, since it's been on my list for a while anyway, having made the the Alex Award list in 2010.

Let me begin with your quickie synopsis:
Alexia Tarabotti, a woman without a soul who is viewed as unable to marry, works with werewolf Lord Conall Maccon to clear her name after she accidentally kills a vampire and is suspected of the disappearances of other undead members of high society.

In case you were a little confused by the mention of vampires and werewolves, let me give you some background on Gail Carriger's version of Steampunk.


http://www.gailcarriger.com/steampunk/about-steampunk
See now? And it totally works! Throwing vampires and werewolves into proper Victorian high society works brilliantly in the hands of Gail Carriger. 
Alexia Tarabotti is a spinster at the ripe old age of 26 (yikes!). She's got quite a brain on her, so she inserts herself into investigations and other activities of the local law enforcement. Although the investigation in this story begins not by her own busybody-ness but after a vampire attacks her. The fallout from the attack starts a domino of events that leads to a discovery of a secret society with sinister goals.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book! At first, it felt a little slow for me and I wasn't sure I would continue. But the beautiful language and the depth of the main character kept me going. I'm glad I did. As I read, I highlighted passage after passage of highly entertaining writing and witty banter. I concluded wishing the story would continue. It really is wickedly funny. Alexia Tarabotti is now one of my all-time favorite characters!

I would be remiss if I neglected to tell you that Gail Garriger now has a teen series set in this world called The Finishing School series. I haven't read it, but from the reviews I've seen, it's appropriate for middle school readers. Whereas this book, as an Alex Award book, is an adult book appropriate for older teens.

I don't have a trailer, but you should really visit Gail Carriger's website. It's chock-full of so many goodies!

Read this one, if you haven't yet! You'll love it.