Wednesday, November 10, 2010

It's really not a good idea to make a werewolf nobleman mad...

Note:  Blameless is the third book in the Parasol Protectorate series.  If you haven’t read it already, check out my review of Soulless here and Changeless here. Otherwise, read on!

Our Lady Maccon just seems unable to keep herself out of trouble these days.  After the fight at Lord Maccon’s family estate, she has chosen to quit her husband’s house and move back in with her family, the Loontwills,  This is where we begin in Gail Carriger’s Blameless, book 3 of The Parasol Protectorate.

You see, supernaturals are not supposed to be able to father a child.  And preternaturals are not supposed to be able to carry a child.  Between the two, there is something seriously wrong here.  And Lord Maccon decides to focus solely on the former, and decides that Alexia must have been unfaithful.

Not one to take having her name besmirched lightly, Alexia storms her way out of Scotland and back to her childhood home.  As word of her delicate condition spreads, she costs her sister her engagement to Captain Featherstonehaugh, and manages to get herself evicted from her family’s home as well.  Luckily, she has friends in strange places, and just as she’s being ejected she is welcomed into the home of rove vampire Lord Akeldama.

When that doesn’t work out quite well either, she takes matters into her own hands.  She decides to get answers about this whole situation herself, if for no other reason than to prove her husband wrong.  So she, Floote, and Madame Lefoux take off to Italy by way of France, to find out once and for all what is going on.  She may have not considered quite how...enthusiastic the Templars can be, but she’ll soon find out.

And where has Lord Maccon been this entire time?  Drinking himself stupid on formaldehyde.

Once again, Gail Carriger has delivered a fun romp through Victorian London, populated by flying machines and the undead both.  This one is much more fast-paced than the last two, mainly propelled by people trying to kill our Alexia Tarabotti and ‘the infant inconvenience.”  We get to see quite a bit more of the world that Carriger has created (who would have guessed that the Italians cook with garlic to repel vampires, and basil to repel werewolves?), and it’s just as well conceived and thought out as London and Scotland have been.

As far as books in a series go, it probably wouldn’t hold up as a standalone.  I do think that if the reader hasn’t read the first two books, the intricacies of vampire civilization, as well as the quirks of the characters involved, would baffle the reader to the point where it wouldn’t be worth finishing. But if you’ve enjoyed the first two books, there’s no reason not to carry on with this one as well.

Highs:  Alexia discovering food that isn’t British, Ivy in a hat shop

Lows:  Again, not exactly a deep book

Verdict: A great continuance of a fast, fun series

Further Reading:  Heartless, Guilty Pleasures

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