Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Heartless Review

Heartless (The Parasol Protectorate 4)
-       Gail Carriger
Publisher: UK – Orbit
Lady Alexia Maccon, soulless, is at it again, only this time the trouble is not her fault. When a mad ghost threatens the queen, Alexia is on the case, following a trail that leads her deep into her husband's past. Top that off with a sister who has joined the suffragette movement (shocking!), Madame Lefoux's latest mechanical invention, and a plague of zombie porcupines and Alexia barely has time to remember she happens to be eight months pregnant. Will Alexia manage to determine who is trying to kill Queen Victoria before it is too late? Is it the vampires again or is there a traitor lurking about in wolf's clothing? And what, exactly, has taken up residence in Lord Akeldama's second best closet?

Despite being eight months pregnant, Lady Alexia Maccon takes no prisoners in her latest adventure. From the first page, she waddles in control of herself and others – and making sure there is always a cup of tea at the ready. One of the elements I love about this series is the comedy of manners that ensures. After all, werewolves turning into naked men causes certain social niceties some issues...

This world neatly combined elements of steampunk (steam inventions and dirigibles) with the paranormal in a world of Victorian ideals. This means that unmarried women don’t go out unchaperoned, and even in the midst of an attack it’s scandalous to see men without hats upon their heads. The investigation into who is threatening the queen is interesting – especially when Alexia gets side tracked. However, the first half of the book is relatively slow moving with little urgency until the final hundred pages when there is a huge finale across London and into the countryside.

I love the cast of characters about Alexia, from her over protective alpha husband, Lord Maccon, the dandy former-vampire drone Biffy, mad inventor Madame Lefoux and even hat-obsessed Ivy Tunstell. The world is unique and this is a rip-roaring adventure with perfect manners and a lot of fun.

Recommended for fans of Nicole Peeler and Philippa Ballantine. 8 out of 10.


  1. This is a series that I look at all the time when I am in the bookstore!

    I love the covers.

  2. I have to read this serie !!! I hope to read the first one soon ! Thanks for the review

  3. I so fail. I have the first one on the ol' tbr and haven't gotten to it yet. How can I love steampunk and PNR and not read it yet? Yep.. I fail!

  4. I liked it :) And it was better than book 3 so I was happy about that. Still the cover succccks

  5. Love the series! But you're right this one was a bit slow at the beginning :/

  6. You know this is another series I wasn't sure about when it first came out, if it would be for me. But then what I heard about it, it started to appeal to me. But shamefully I have not picked them up yet. Sounds like a great read. :) Thank you!