Gail Carriger: Parasol protectorate

Gail Carriger: Parasol protectorate; Soulless

Soulless_by_Gail_Carriger_1st_edition_coverAuthor: Gail Carriger
Genre: Fantasy/SF
Pages: +- 357

Meet Miss Alexia Tarabotti. She is a half Italian, from her father’s side, and still a spinster though she is in her twenties. O yes, there is another thing: she has no soul.
But she has a parasol and she takes that thing everywhere she goes.

Good thing she did that because she was so rudely interrupted while, trying, to drink her tea by a vampire attacking her. Luckily for her the Lord of Woolsey, Lord Maccon (a werewolf), came to her rescue… of a sort.

This story is about Alexia Tarabotti. Living in Victorian London.
Her father died when she was young and so her mother remarried.
Now she has two stepsisters and a stepfather. Her stepfather only sees Alexia as an additional burden. Her two stepsisters are even worse. They have a pale skin while Alexia is doomed with an Italian skin, they always look pretty and talk nonsense while Alexia had a big nose (in their opinion) and has a brain. With her mother now, sort of, hating her guts (Alexia being to rude at some points and a spinster) she just does what she likes (tiny bit like Cinderella right? With the meanish/rude stepsisters). That involves sticking her nose on BUR business.
BUR meaning the Bureau of Unnatural Registry.
How fortunate for Alexia that BUR employs the rather rude, loud and gorgeous Lord Maccon, Lord of Woolsey castle and therefore is Alpha of the pack.
Where at first there seems no connection between them but only mutual dislike, their relationship will change after while (I dub them Alma).

When at a ball with her family, Miss Tarabotti finds herself rudely interrupted by a vampire who attacks her.
Now there is something strange happening during this attack, being that the vampire has no idea what Miss Tarabotti is, Preternatural, soulless. Vampires are mostly arranged in groups, communities named Hive’s. A lone vampire, a rove, does appear sometimes but not often and even though he is not part of a hive, he knows his business.
Why is a lone rove roaming around London without any knowledge of anything supernatural? With the help of Lord Maccon, Lord Lyall (Maccon’s Beta) and Lord Akeldama (A rove vampire) pieces of the puzzle are falling into place.
Not just the attack at the ball is a reason to be careful, dangerous people are lurking in the shadows. Can Alexia find out what is going on?

“Why is it, Miss Tarabotti, every time I have to clean up a mess in a library, you just happen to be in the middle of it?” the earl demanded of her.

I liked this book.
There is a lot of humour in it, for example:
– Each chapter had a name, that’s obvious, chapter 3 being: our heroine heeds some good advice and chapter 4: our heroine ignores good advice.
– The way Alexia speaks with Lord Maccon and others. There is etiquette of course and she follows them but sometimes she speaks before she thinks.

It is just that you can’t possible dislike this book when you already like the vampire/werewolf part. The storyline is easy to follow, there is your little romance thingy going on, the language is easy enough and there is action now and again. Though the characters are not the most well developed characters ever, they are great for this story.

I really enjoyed myself while reading this book, I laughed a lot and that is a good thing. But while the story was very enjoyable, I don’t think I am blown away or anything by it. The concept is great but there isn’t enough depth in this story for me. Maybe that will come in the sequel. Though very amusing, I give this book three stars.

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