Heartless (Parasol Protectorate #4)

8356487Rating: 4 Stars
Published: July 2011
Genre: Adult// Urban Fantasy // Victorian // Steampunk // Paranormal
Favorite Quote:

“If you don’t feel that it is forward of me to ask, are you here to kill me, Lord Ambrose?”
The vampire titled his head to one side in acknowledgement. “Sadly, yes.  I do apologize for the inconvenience.”
“Oh, really, must you? I’d much rather you didn’t.”
“That’s what they all say.”

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?
Summary taken from Goodreads.

I am terribly sad there’s only one more of these books left.  I think the first two were the strongest in this series but all were great fun.  I find the more I get into a series, the less I actually have to say about it.  These books are simply fantastic and ridiculous.  I’m so glad I’ve read them & they’re in my life.

Alexia Tarabotti (Maccon) is one of my favorite female characters, hands down.  She’s intelligent, she’s witty, and she’s brave (or stubborn, it’s hard to tell which).  I love how unapologetic she is– it’s refreshing.

“My lord, I do hate to ask this of you especially, but will you be completely serious with me for a moment?”
Lord Akeldama’s foot stopped rocking and his pleasant expression tightened.  “My darling girl, we have known each other many years now, but such a request breaches even the bonds of our friendship.”

Alexia’s relationship with all the characters in the book is special in their own way.  Gail Carriger has a fantastic way of writing a (larger) cast of characters but feeling like each one of them is completely fleshed out.  I wish I could jump into the pages of this book to interact with every single one of them– I couldn’t even pick one that I’d like to meet most.

“I suppose you might consider keeping more than one cat.”
“Oh dear me, no. Then I should be known as that vampire with all the cats.”
“I hardly think that ever likely to become your defining characteristic, my lord.”

I love seeing situational comedy in a novel. Alexia manages to get herself in all kinds of predicaments that are (not always) her fault. It makes for delightful reading no matter how preposterous it may be.  And trust me, some of the story lines get a bit out there.  That’s part of the charm– there are no boundaries that aren’t willing to be crossed, no matter how silly it may seem.  And yet, everything comes perfectly together and you’re left thinking, of course it would happen this way. That’s a kind of writing magic.  In this novel especially, things get all sorts of crazy because Alexia is 8 months pregnant.

These books often remind how much FUN reading can be.  They also make me want to drink tea, even though I don’t tend to drink tea ever.  And they always make me smile.

“Spin the parasol three times and repeat after me: I shield in the name of fashion. I accessorize for one and all. Pursuit of truth is my passion. This I vow by the great parasol.”

Though, I’m hoping there’s more romance in Timeless.  I miss seeing Alexia & Conall all gooey for each other.  I can’t wait to read about little Prudence and the Lord & Lady Maccon are getting on with being parents (and how Lord Akeldama is handling being her adoptive father, too!) It’s sure to bring lots of entertainment.  The snippet of Timeless at the back of this book was not enough and I must get my hands on a copy soon.

Have you read any of Gail Carriger’s novels? As you can see, I highly recommend her writing.


4 thoughts on “Heartless (Parasol Protectorate #4)

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