Review: Parasol Protectorate (Books 1-4) by Gail Carriger

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The Parasol Protectorate by Gail Carriger is a delightful intertwining of the Regency/Victorian romance and werewolf/vampire romps. It does not take itself seriously and has a pack, pun fully intended, of amusing characters. After the jump you’ll find reviews of the first 4 books. The 5th is scheduled for publication in March 2012.

Soulless (Parasol Protectorate, #1)Soulless by Gail Carriger
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This book brings together so many things I love: kickass female heroines who don’t dress like they belong in a film mockery of an S&M video, food, vampires and other such magical types, love, dirty scenes, and the London Season. Didn’t see that last one coming, did you? Well, it’s true. Gail Carriger manages to fit all these things into Soulless, a book that is more funny than sincere, more romance than steampunk, and less creepy than you might think when you realize what the main couple has to overcome. Basically, I recommend it, despite being skeptical when I picked it up. It’s fun in so many ways.

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Changeless (Parasol Protectorate, #2)Changeless by Gail Carriger
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While not quite as good as Soulless, Changeless was a delightful read and exactly what I needed to cleanse my brain after reading American Psycho. Gail Carriger writes good, funny yarns. There is a definite amount of repetition, but it can be forgiven. I can’t bring myself to say that her stories and characters are original, but there is a certain freshness to her stories. Perhaps it is the way her points of view are written or the very, very mild inclusion of a few steampunk elements. Regardless, I look forward to continuing the series. I mean, how often are Victorian romances & fantasy mixed without being tedious? Not often enough, I say.

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Blameless (The Parasol Protectorate, #3)Blameless by Gail Carriger
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I don’t know quite how I would explain why I love Gail Carriger‘s Parasol Protectorate series so much, but I really do. While not so good as the others, Blameless has that same mixture of wit and “d’aww” reaction that I enjoyed in the previous books. As always, Alexia is involved in crazy adventures and Conall rages about wildly. Well, that isn’t all, but it does take up a fair amount. Basically, I continue to recommend these books to those who like Regency romances, even though these are set in Victorian times, as well as those who like light urban fantasy. There’s a little something for everyone here. For me, it’s on to Heartless! (Oh yes, ladybugs and pesto both play major roles in this. What’s not to love?)

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Heartless (The Parasol Protectorate, #4)Heartless by Gail Carriger
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Oh, goodreads, why do you let a few people keep the rest of us from having half stars. By rights, Heartless should get 3.5/5 or 6/10 stars. As it is, because I like the series & goodreads is lame, I’m giving it 4. In this latest addition, we see a lot more of the same. The primary plot is nowhere near as interesting as some of the things we learn about our primary and supporting characters. Some of them have pasts much deeper and more complicated than we previously knew. We also learn more about Alexia’s father. Naturally, these are the tamer aspects, but, you know…spoilers! Regardless of the ways this book went flat, I definitely am looking forward to the release in March of the next in the series.

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