Series: Parasol Protectorate #2
Published by Orbit on April 1, 2010
Genres: Adult, Fantasy, Mystery & Detective, Romance, Steampunk
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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.
CHANGLESS is the second book of the Parasol Protectorate series: a comedy of manners set in Victorian London, full of werewolves, vampires, dirigibles, and tea-drinking.
If you haven’t been around here long, you may have missed my never-ending promotion of Soulless, the first book in The Parasol Protectorate Series by Gail Carriger. This is turning into one of my favorite series, which is really saying something, because I have a few that are way up there on my favorites list.
Changeless picks back up with our lovely Alexia Tarabotti (oh, excuse me, now Alexia Maccon), now happily married to Lord Conall Maccon, Earl and Alpha of the Woolsey Werewolf Pack. The big mystery begins when suddenly supernaturals are no longer supernatural in a certain part of London. Alexia is tasked with finding out just what is causing this blight, and her detective duties take her to Scotland, to visit her husband’s former pack. Steampunk oddities, supernatural shenanigans, terrible headwear choices, and untimely kissing ensues, of course.
I love how cheery and silly and yet somehow thrilling these books are. They sort of lull you into this false sense of jolliness, what with Ivy Hisslepenny’s horrid hats and Tunstell’s love of Ivy and Alexia’s clever comebacks…and then something surprising happens, and you’re reminded you are reading a supernatural action book. Every twist is welcome, and our heroine always manages to keep up in style.
I enjoyed Lord and Lady Maccon’s relationship, though some of their teasing got a bit wearing. I wish there was slightly more earnest affection between them; I know it’s there, but sometimes you start to feel that they don’t really like each other. Nevertheless, it was fun to see them well into married life, and how it has changed both of them. They are quite adorable, in a somewhat odd way (just read the books and you’ll understand).
None of the new characters that were introduced were any favorites of mine. I especially disliked Madame Lefoux, the french inventor. I felt that we were supposed to like her, but I didn’t really, from the moment we met her. I know she sticks around so I hope she grows on me. Ivy and Tunstell come along for the journey (as does Alexia’s obnoxious sister Felicity) and the two are so ridiculous that you can’t help but love them. I personally wouldn’t take Ivy anywhere, but Alexia is definitely braver than me.
Gail Carriger writes some of the wittiest dialogue, and she has very clever ideas about the supernatural. I will never tire of her writing, and I so look forward to reading the rest of the series.
Content: Violence, supernatural shenanigans, sexual situations (though not graphic/described), offensive headwear.