Blameless

( 282 )

Overview

Quitting her husband's house and moving back in with her horrible family, Lady Maccon becomes the scandal of the London season.

Queen Victoria dismisses her from the Shadow Council, and the only person who can explain anything, Lord Akeldama, unexpectedly leaves town. To top it all off, Alexia is attacked by homicidal mechanical ladybugs, indicating, as only ladybugs can, the fact that all of London's vampires are now very much interested in ...

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Blameless (Parasol Protectorate Series #3)

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Overview

Quitting her husband's house and moving back in with her horrible family, Lady Maccon becomes the scandal of the London season.

Queen Victoria dismisses her from the Shadow Council, and the only person who can explain anything, Lord Akeldama, unexpectedly leaves town. To top it all off, Alexia is attacked by homicidal mechanical ladybugs, indicating, as only ladybugs can, the fact that all of London's vampires are now very much interested in seeing Alexia quite thoroughly dead.

While Lord Maccon elects to get progressively more inebriated and Professor Lyall desperately tries to hold the Woolsey werewolf pack together, Alexia flees England for Italy in search of the mysterious Templars. Only they know enough about the preternatural to explain her increasingly inconvenient condition, but they may be worse than the vampires — and they're armed with pesto.

BLAMELESS is the third book of the Parasol Protectorate series: a comedy of manners set in Victorian London, full of werewolves, vampires, dirigibles, and tea-drinking.

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Editorial Reviews

io9.com on Soulless
"Soulless is a character-driven romp with great worldbuilding and delicious rapier wit that recalls Austen and P.G. Wodehouse."
All Things Urban Fantasy on Changeless
"The dialogue is as smart and snappy as ever, full of intelligent humor and artful verbal sparring."
fantasyliterature.com on Blameless
"A tapestry that is simultaneously witty, charming, exhilarating and downright fun."
Charlaine Harris on Blameless
"This is as much fun as the previous two books."
From the Publisher
"Soulless is a character-driven romp with great worldbuilding and delicious rapier wit that recalls Austen and P.G. Wodehouse."—io9.com on Soulless

"The dialogue is as smart and snappy as ever, full of intelligent humor and artful verbal sparring."—All Things Urban Fantasy on Changeless

"A tapestry that is simultaneously witty, charming, exhilarating and downright fun."—fantasyliterature.com on Blameless

"This is as much fun as the previous two books."—Charlaine Harris on Blameless

From the Publisher
"Soulless is a character-driven romp with great worldbuilding and delicious rapier wit that recalls Austen and P.G. Wodehouse."—io9.com on Soulless

"The dialogue is as smart and snappy as ever, full of intelligent humor and artful verbal sparring."—All Things Urban Fantasy on Changeless

"A tapestry that is simultaneously witty, charming, exhilarating and downright fun."—fantasyliterature.com on Blameless

"This is as much fun as the previous two books."—Charlaine Harris on Blameless

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316401760
  • Publisher: Orbit
  • Publication date: 4/1/2014
  • Series: Parasol Protectorate Series , #3
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 224,858
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.25 (h) x 1.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Gail Carriger

New York Times bestselling author Gail Carriger writes to cope with being raised in obscurity by an expatriate Brit and an incurable curmudgeon. She escaped small town life and inadvertently acquired several degrees in Higher Learning. Ms. Carriger then traveled the historic cities of Europe, subsisting entirely on biscuits secreted in her handbag. She resides in the Colonies, surrounded by fantastic shoes, where she insists on tea imported from London.

The Parasol Protectorate books are: Soulless, Changeless, Blameless, Heartless, and Timeless. Soulless won the ALA's Alex Award. A manga adaptation released in Spring 2012 and a young adult series set in the same universe — the Finishing School series — launched in Spring 2013. Gail is soon to begin writing a new adult series, The Parasol Protectorate Abroad (2015).

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 282 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(157)

4 Star

(97)

3 Star

(25)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(0)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 283 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 24, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Blameless for loving it!

    And now for something completely different! Soulless kept us nicely within the realms of London. Changeless had us embark on one dirigible trip to Scotland to an isolated castle. Blameless takes us on a daring dash to Italy as Lady Alexia Maccon decides she needs a break from the judging eyes of London society and goes in search of answers about herself and her condition(s).

    This is a whole new type of adventure for Alexia but not at all unwelcome. Along with Floote and Madame LeFoux, she travels to Italy, pursued by vampires who want her dead for reasons not revealed until later, to the home of the Templars. The trip there is incredibly exciting and it is difficult to put the story down because as soon as you get to a point where you may consider stopping, something happens which you have to see resolved! Things slow down somewhat once we are with the Templars but this is by no means a bad thing. Here we learn answers to some of the questions we've been pondering, especially when it comes to Alexia's condition (and I'm not referring to her soullessness).

    You may be wondering about the lack of Conall Maccon here. I know I would have been, given he is my favourite character. Well, do not fear! Alongside Alexia's story we have what is currently happening at Woolsey and within London. Admittedly Conall spends half the book drunk but this is really quite funny. But even so, he is still amazing, as will become apparent when someone tries to challenge for the position of Woolsey alpha. Professor Lyall meanwhile is investigating into where Lord Akeldama has vanished off to for he has just suddenly disappeared, along with all his drones. This is equally as fascinating as Alexia's journey and you cannot help but feel for him when you find out exactly what has happened. Even more so when that story arc concludes.

    All in all this was a fantastic read. Not necessarily my favourite of the books so far (that will still be Soulless) and I admit I had to skip to the end of this book just to see how one particular situation is resolved because I had been so crushed when it happened (this is not a fault of the book, I am just weak!). I will not spoil it for you though. However, this is by no means a book you should miss, though if you have not read the first two then you really should, especially as this one contains major spoilers for those two.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 3, 2010

    Another charming thrill ride

    Blameless, the third in Gail Carriger's Alexia Tarabotti series, lives up to the first two in the indomitable Alexia off on yet another adventure where her husband, the moping Lord Maccon, wishes she would never go. Changeless ended in a cliffhanger (after, of course, resolving the main tale of that book), and Carriger takes full advantage of the situation. Does she resolve their heartbreak in the first chapter, the second, or even the third? Absolutely not. Instead, Alexia thrusts herself into trouble after trouble as she goes about attempting to prove her dear husband is a lunkhead. While this sounds like a private, personal, and agonizing journey, you can count on Carriger to make sure it's anything but. Once again the supernatural world is up in arms, with Alexia at the very heart of it. Nor does she sit on her hands with her family, society, and even the Queen turned against her. This is Alexia we're talking about. She's off gallivanting about a not so friendly Europe with Madame Lefoux while Professor Lyall holds the pack together and Conall rails at his beloved wife for believing him when he said all those awful things about her even though her condition is more than unprecedented, it's impossible. It has been said before that these novels are unclassifiable, varying from romance, to fantasy, to horror, to thriller, to...? There is absolutely nothing horrific about them to my mind, despite both werewolves and vampires, but otherwise pretty much every other genre has a foothold. That sounds chaotic and a recipe for disaster, but not in Carriger's hands. There's science of a sort, there's definitely hair-raising danger, neat gadgets, true love...and the attendant crises of faith..., family drama, hints of generations old conflicts, and of course a twist at the end that I can't wait to see featured in the next novel about the parasol protectorate. (And just a tiny spoiler, but Alexia does indeed get full reign with her not so decorative parasol.) Seriously, if you haven't given this series a try, you're missing out. It's funny, heartwarming, and nerve wracking...often all at once. It says something that my 16-year-old son snatched Blameless from my desk the second I recorded its arrival with no consideration for just who bought the book.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 4, 2011

    Best steampunk series there is!

    **SPOILERS FROM CHANGELESS**

    How I LOVE his new series by Gail Carriger! I was a little skeptical at first, but when I kept reading good reviews on Soulless, I gave it a try. Best decision ever! Blameless was wonderful and so worth the ever long wait! And my thanks mostly goes over to Jess at The Cozy Reader, for it was her reviews and recommendation that led me to read it!

    It picks up relatively where Changeless left off. A few weeks or so have gone by and poor Alexia has been suffering with her family for this time. If you're read the first two books then you know she really is suffering, if this series is new to you, you must know that Alexia truly does have horrid family members! They take the phrase "family drama" to new meanings!

    Alas, Alexia does not stay long as she decides to leave England and all the cruelty she has been suffering from the newspapers and just about everyone else. Everyone in England, it seems, blames Alexia for the fallout of her marriage with Lord Maccon. No one cares about her side of the story, for newspapers never lie! (ha!)

    But this is no vacation for Alexia. She is determined to find information to prove her husband wrong. That the "incident" was not her fault in the way he thinks it is. But her quest takes serious turns for the worse, such as mechanical ladybugs intent to kill, more vampires and a few unsavory characters that Alexia isn't quite too sure of. Luckily she has her friends, Madame Lefoux and Floote with her. They make quite the interesting traveling trio.

    This is definitely one of the best series I've read this year. It is entirely different than my normal genre reading. It's a historical paranormal romance--usually both two things I don't read all that much--but it is just incredible. There are times I forget that the time is set sometime in the past. There are some technology items that get a little confusing when describing them and how they work, part of the steampunk flavor I guess, but it doesn't really detract from my enjoyment, once again, I just roll with it.

    There are quite a few LOL moments in here as well. My teaser from yesterday was one and there are still a few more chuckle moments. Alexia and Lord Maccon together are just to die for! Especially when Alexia finally comes face to face with him in the book and gets to have her "say" with him as it has been building up for quite some time.

    Luckily, this one did not end with such a cliffhanger as Changeless did. The book finished itself off nicely with one or two somewhat loose ends. Really they were just a thread of info that we learned that didn't come up again, so it will have to wait til Heartless which releases in July 2011.

    Overall I give the book 4.5/5 stars! The technological stuff derailed me a bit, but not by much. The book was well paced as Alexia and her friends literally had to move from to place quite quickly with the enemy on their tails. And there was still more going on in England with Lord Maccon being somewhat indisposed, leaving poor Professor Lyall to clean up after him.

    This is a very entertaining series and one I highly recommend! Don't let the historical setting throw you off! There is quite a bit of action in here, suspense, some romance, and a lot of wit! Alexia's mannerisms are very entertaining as well!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 21, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Proper, polite, and just the right bit of the absurd

    This book is a necessary evil. It reads as a linking book. Almost like a bridge between books two and four. Because, while the text was filled with Carriger’s trademark wit and tongue-and-cheek steampunk creations the plot itself is a bit ‘light’. I’ll say ‘light’ and not ‘weak’ because it’s a necessary story for Alexia and Conall. At the end of book two we find Alexia pregnant and it is (apparently) un-explainable between her and Conall.

    My hunch was that the curse breaker plague was going to be the explanation. I mean, it did turn all supernatural completely human…doesn’t that mean reproductive functions will work again as well? Seemed simple enough to me. Heck, even if Carriger didn’t want to take it that far I was willing to accept that given the uniqueness of their relationship (preternatural and supernatural are never to mix in this society) that no one had attempted to cross-breed. Alexia’s touch makes Conall mortal – thus he functions as a mortal man whilst having relations with his wife. This would make a baby possible, no?

    No. Apparently not. My mind is not intelligent enough for Carriger’s aether-theory. I guess it’s far more difficult than my pedestrian ponderings. And I’ll admit that by the end of this installment I was still quite confused as to how it scientifically happened. Even Meyer gave me a vampire baby-making explanation I could accept. Forget that part during your reading? Yeah, I got it off her website. Don’t judge. You know you were curious too.

    Curious, because you need these fantasy worlds to be completely rational if you are going to accept them. The author needs to build rules and stick to them. You can break them only if there’s a super secret Plan B rule that will make even more sense than Plan A did. I won’t say that Carriger’s pregnancy explanation broke her world for me. Finding and explaining the pregnancy was one of the two reasons for this novel. It was more like I started skimming the explanation. I ‘Smile and Nodded’ at the explanation and politely waited for it to stop talking. Like math involving more than basic addition/subtraction…or integers higher than I can count on my fingers…I just stopped trying to understand and accepted that it did in fact make sense. Someone clearly smarter than myself obviously figured it out. Time to move on now, blah, blah, blah…

    It may seem like I harp on this issue a bit, but understand that aside from Lord Maccon’s issue of sobering up and apologizing to his wife…this is the entire plot of the story. The mysteries of the Templar Knights were simplified. The issue of the child’s supernaturality (word?) is simplified. Even the tease of finding out more about Alexia’s father is in the end simplified and then forgotten about. So the complexity of the one thing I thought could actually be simplified was an issue for me.

    I still enjoyed the read. I was in the mood for witty Victorian conversation. That play between manners and the absurd that Carriger does so well. Snappy dialogue and chapter titles abound. Just know that in this series the third title is just a hop skip and a jump away from the fourth. I’ll just say that the fourth should pack a bit more of a plot punch to pick up the ‘lightness’ of the third.

    Rating: 3.5/5 Proper, polite, and just the right bit of the absurd save this tale of marital discord…Because without it, it’s 200-odd pages of waiting for an apology…

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 1, 2011

    Another fantastic read!

    My thoughts:
    I love this series! I completely enjoyed the first two books and was looking forward to this one! I was not disappointed! I was less than thrilled with Lord Maccon's behavior, but of course I was supposed to be. I was thrilled that Professor Lyall gets to play such a large role in this book. He has been one of my favorite characters throughout the series and it was great to see him get so much print in this book.


    The author once again builds an incredible story that is both believable and too much "the thing". She continues to create characters that the reader can truly sink their teeth into. The relationship dynamics between many of the characters are so balanced that it seems one could not stand without the other. In this third book of the series, suddenly these interdependent characters are playing strong, independent roles - it is pleasantly surprising.


    The thing that stands out the most for me is the spectrum of emotion in this story - the reader is sent on a roller coaster ride throughout the story.


    I love the end - I am always excited when a series is not over at the end of a book - no one really wants a book to end in a cliff hanger, but I get so involved in the lives of the characters that I just don't want the series to be over. So, on that note - can't wait for the next one!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 29, 2011

    Pesto in Italy and infant-inconvenience

    Lady Maccon, the former Alexia Tarbotti, is in big trouble. Queen Victoria has dismissed her from the Shadow Council and she's left her husband's house to reside with her parent's and step siblings. Worse. She's pregnant. A condition she was certain would never happen to her. A condition her werewolf husband is nearly certain he couldn't have gotten her in. A condition vampires are trying to kill her for.

    After her family hears the tragic news and the paper implies unsavory things, Alexia makes the only decision she can: she decides to head for Italy and the only people who might have answers on how this could possibly have happened to her: The Templars. Sure, the Templars have pesto, but they also plan to use her in the war against the vampires, ghosts and werewolves.

    And they don't need her alive to do it.

    Blameless starts with Alexia's world in a great deal of flux and confusion. I thought perhaps this might just be me, as I read the books out of order, but fortunately Ms. Carringer's skill quickly explained the crux of the matter and I fell under the spell of the story. Deprived of her pack, Alexia begins to build a new one as she sets out on her latest adventure. Some characters return and new ones are introduced, but always there is Floote, her butler from the first book. There are delightful new steam machines that keep the story moving and wonderful twists and turns.

    But what I missed most in the story was Alexia's husband, Lord Maccon. Where has my alpha hero gone? Sure, he comes back about a third of the way through, but for the most part, we're left in the head of his Beta, Professor Lyall. And I admit, while the good professor is funny, he is not Conall. I hope the yin and yang returns in the next installment, Heartless, as their dance is part of the fun of the story and actually gives soulless Alexia a bit of, well, soul.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 19, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Highly Recommended

    Although these past two books haven't been quite as phenomenal as the first one, they are still witty, clever, and thoroughly enjoyable. The plot development has been multi-faceted without overdoing it, and I love the addition of some new favorite character (Madame Lefoux and Monsieur Trouve). Although this book was lacking in the Lord Akeldama department, and did not have nearly enough of Lord Conall Maccon, Earl of Woolsey, what was there was still as <i>delectable<i> as usual. I am torn because although I love this series and am excited to be able to keep reading it, I originally thought it was a trilogy and am ready to see my characters happily ever after all ready! Ah well, guess I'll just have to keep reading!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Another solid read from Carriger

    While the introduction to Alexia's world of werewolves, vampires, and flawed relatives hooked me from the start I admit I was a bit angry at the way the second book left off. I worried it might not go over well to the third book, but I was wrong. Learning more about not only herself and the child she carries Alexia also learns more about the rakish Tarabotti, her ever infamous father, and the world of the Templars while a poor Lyall must keep the Woolsey pack from utter chaos during Lord Maccon's inebriated wallowing. Set with action the likes of which only Carriger could come up with--poisonous, exploding ladybugs and more--Blameless is a book that continues to uphold its promises and I expect to see many more from Carriger! Definitely worth checking out the whole series if you haven't yet.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 28, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    This alternate Victorian world is an enthralling thriller.

    Lady Alexia Maccon is a soulless, forever denied an eternal home because she was born without a soul; her touch renders supernaturals (vampires and werewolves) human for a period of time. She is the only known female soulless and her husband Scottish Earl Maccon, a werewolf, denounced her and tossed her out of his pack because she is pregnant. He knows the fetus is not his as werewolves cannot procreate so she obviously cheated. She is fuming at her spouse as she knows that she was only with him.

    Alexia returns to her parents' home in England and they are upset because of the scandal she caused; which she notices does not include her spouse. When they learn she is pregnant, they throw her out as they know she cuckolded her husband as werewolves cannot procreate.

    In London, vampires try to kill her and ladybugs attack her so she flees to the continent where the supernatural are uninterested in human affairs. She ends up in Florence captured by the Knights Templar because she can be a weapon. However, when they learn of her condition and what she might give birth to they want her dead. Only a miracle can save her and her unborn as everyone she encounters fears the abomination she carries.

    The third Parasol Protectorate tale (see Soulless and Changeless) is an action-packed, at times amusing, but always suspenseful historical urban fantasy. Readers will root for the intrepid unsinkable heroine who does not adhere to Victorian societal rules. Usually mild mannered, only her husband can raise her ire, which leads to her landing in out of control dangerous scenarios. This alternate Victorian world storyline is an enthralling thriller.

    Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 4, 2014

    Great read

    Wow, what a fast adventure this book turned out to be. Taking off about a month after Changeless left off, Alexia has tried to steel herself for whatever future may lay before her. However in this Victorian Era a bad news rag can throw everything off kilter. Alexia and her band of compatriots make haste to the land of her heritage, plagued along the way by vampires and being followed by a savior hiding in the shadows. Conall must make a hard decision for a very stubborn Scotsman and werewolf, go against all he knows is true as a werewolf or believe his wife is unmoral. In the end , templar knights may not be all good for Alexia and a good bit of news can make a big difference for an emotional pregnant woman. I can't wait to read the next book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 11, 2013

    Great serious

    Interesting steampunk novel with innovative magic system.

    Well thought out.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2012

    A properly whimsical romp!

    Enjoyed the series very much.

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  • Posted November 28, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Great Series

    You must try the Parasol Protectorate series. It is much more than an historical.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2012

    Fun read

    I have been reading this series from the beginning. It is fun, light reading. Interesting take on the supernatural and quirky inventions.

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  • Posted August 31, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    The second two books in the Parasol Protectorate series have yet

    The second two books in the Parasol Protectorate series have yet to live up to the standard set in Soulless. However, they are armed with Gail's fantastic writing style - full of wit, charm, and the ability to make me fangirl.

    Did I think the plot improved over Changeless? Oh yes. I wasn't as sure of what was going to come next, and the new characters (Templars, anybody?) introduced were interesting, though not particularly entertaining. I will be happiest if the upcoming Heartless is centered in London, without a roving Alexia.

    However, I do love Alexia. You can put her in any situation and it immediately becomes entertaining. And Lord Maccon? Oh, I do adore him. He has his flaws - what man and or wolf doesn't!? - and watching him drunk was absolutely hysterical. Put Maccon and Alexia in the same scene and I can't help but love what I read. I did think Alexia should have stayed angrier at Maccon in the end.

    But if Gail rewrote the phone book, I'd read it. I just absolutely adore her writing style, and her quotability factor is through the roof - just ask my family; I kept giggling and reading parts of the book to them as I went through.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 2, 2012

    Creative!

    The most creative plot yet in the series. New inventions & fascinating scuence (fiction) make for an un-put-downable read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 6, 2012

    Astounding

    So far I have loved every book in this series. Very unique style.

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  • Posted April 2, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Great series, Meh book

    Quitting her husband's house and moving back in with her horrible family, Lady Maccon becomes the scandal of the London season. Queen Victoria dismisses her from the Shadow Council, and the only person who can explain anything, Lord Akeldama, unexpectedly leaves town. To top it all off, Alexia is attacked by homicidal mechanical ladybugs, indicating, as only ladybugs can, the fact that all of London's vampires are now very much interested in seeing Alexia quite thoroughly dead. While Lord Maccon elects to get progressively more inebriated and Professor Lyall desperately tries to hold the Woolsey werewolf pack together, Alexia flees England for Italy in search of the mysterious Templars. Only they know enough about the preternatural to explain her increasingly inconvenient condition, but they may be worse than the vampires -- and they're armed with pesto.

    Finding herself pregnant, without a husband by her side (Lord Maccon), without a loyal friend near by (Lord Akeldama), and stuck within her horrendous family home again with the whole society of London ruthlessly gossiping behind her back ... Alexia almost welcomes the international adventure that occurs during Blameless. She's on a mission to discovery the secret the vampire cults are keeping in regards to her "infant-inconvenience" destiny, while dodging death treats, imprisonment, and unexpected surprises.

    If you read the series, you know they're a nice change from almost everything else out there. Very Victorian, very scientific, and very high-brow. Yet, it was almost too much for my taste this time. I wanted more romance and got robotic lady bugs. Not enough comical relief and too much Madame Lefoux. I'm not a fan of MANY of the side characters throughout this series, thus if I get an overload of them ... I don't enjoy the story overall. Thus, that was the problem with Blameless for me. I couldn't connect with Alexia anywhere throughout the tale and felt the whole book was written as a rat race without a finish line. When the ending finally does arrive, it's like BAM only four ages left. Whaaaat? I didn't know if I wanted more or to just be happy it was over. Sad, but true!

    Likes: Alexia making deals with her "infant-inconvenience" to become more motherly.

    Dislikes: Lord Maccon's stubbornness didn't make him a very likable character.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2012

    Damn good!

    I'm about to start reading Blameless tonight, having finished Changeless this afternoon. I really like the series. It isn't phenomenally good, but it is damn good! I'm a tiny bit put off by her (his?) propensity to go for the cheap, obvious laugh - and you can see it coming - i.e., "oh, she's gonna go there, isn't she? yup, she did", but it's easy to overlook as the writing is generally quite good. I am more bothered by the modern Americanisms that occasionally pop up - they're very jarring to me, like an electric shock or a sudden loud noise. I know we're in an alternate universe here, but it still feels out of place to me. If I could ask anything of the author, I would say, please stop. We (your readers) don't need that to grasp your meaning - and there's enough accuracy in your dialogue that I know you know how to do it right. All that aside, I am enjoying this series immensely; I will continue reading it and I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys this genre. You won't be disappointed.

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  • Posted January 25, 2012

    Recommend if you like this genre

    I have enjoyed the first three books of this series. Not my top picks, they are a nice read and I would recommend them. Look forward to reading the next book.

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