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Poison or Protect: A Delightfully Deadly Novella

Poison or Protect: A Delightfully Deadly Novella

4.9 12
by Gail Carriger

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Can one gentle Highland soldier woo Victorian London’s most scandalous lady assassin, or will they both be destroyed in the attempt?

New York Times bestselling author Gail Carriger presents a stand-alone romance novella set in her popular steampunk universe full of manners, spies, and dainty sandwiches.

Lady Preshea Villentia, the


Can one gentle Highland soldier woo Victorian London’s most scandalous lady assassin, or will they both be destroyed in the attempt?

New York Times bestselling author Gail Carriger presents a stand-alone romance novella set in her popular steampunk universe full of manners, spies, and dainty sandwiches.

Lady Preshea Villentia, the Mourning Star, has four dead husbands and a nasty reputation. Fortunately, she looks fabulous in black. What society doesn’t know is that all her husbands were marked for death by Preshea’s employer. And Preshea has one final assignment.

It was supposed to be easy, a house party with minimal bloodshed. Preshea hadn’t anticipated Captain Gavin Ruthven – massive, Scottish, quietly irresistible, and… working for the enemy. In a battle of wits, Preshea may risk her own heart – a terrifying prospect, as she never knew she had one.

Buy Poison or Protect today to find out whether it’s heartbreak or haggis at this high tea.

Warning: Contains men pleasing women, and ladies who know what they want and ask for it, sometimes in detail. May also contain plaid, appearances from favorite characters, and the strategic application of leather gloves.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'Behind the delightful whimsy and snarky observations, there is a great deal of heart and soul...'
RT Book Reviews (Custard Protocol series)

'A blend of Victorian romance, screwball comedy of manners and alternate history... Intoxicatingly witty'
~ Publishers Weekly (Parasol Protectorate series)

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Meet the Author

Gail Carriger writes steampunk comedies of manners mixed with urban fantasy and romance. Her books include the Parasol Protectorate, Custard Protocol, and Delightfully Deadly series for adults, and the Finishing School series for young adults. She is published in 18 different languages and has 13 NYT bestsellers via 7 different lists (including #1 in Manga). She was once an archaeologist and is overly fond of shoes, octopuses, and tea. www.gailcarriger.com

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Poison or Protect: A Delightfully Deadly Novella 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a sweet story, which is a word I never thought I would use to describe Preasha's story. Usually I find novellas too short, but this was perfect. The perfect morsel to go with a cup of tea!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
How is this possible? I detest romance novels as a rule, and usually can't even stomach the ripped bodice artwork and lurid, overdone descriptions of the "plot" that has been stretched like a corset on a hippopotamus to fill in between bedrooms. But as I adore everything Gail Carriger has written, I figured I could risk it. It's not like I ever had to tell anyone that I'd read a romance novel, instead of my usual brick-thick sci-fi & fantasy epic series. Furthermore, I am decidedly not a fan of Presha, having read the excellent Finishing School series multiple times. But I LOVED this book. The characters were beautifully developed, to the extent that I can totally forgive young Presha some of her harsh, cutting behavior. The romantic scenes, far from being overdone, were necessary, and beautifully written. Truly, my only 2 complaints were that I wanted the book to be much longer, and I can now no longer unilaterally say I loathe romance novels. If Gail Carriger wrote it, I will publicly and unabashedly adore it.
Anonymous 15 days ago
Wonderful short about Presha from the Finishing School series. Never expected to like Presha but the author does a fantastic job crafting a wonderful story and making Presha an interesting character with a sympathic backstory. Fans of Finishing School and Parasol Protectorate are sure to enjoy.
Anonymous 10 months ago
Immensely fun read. Not for young readers, however if you have been a fan of her works then this one will satisfy an itch you probably didn't know you had.
Anonymous 11 months ago
Typical gail carriger in the best way. I love her finishing school and parasol protectorate series and this one falls right in between them.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
That was FUN. Hope to see more of this pair.
BentNeedle More than 1 year ago
Well, wasn’t this a romp! I confess I was a little disappointed in the tamer nature of Gail Carriger’s last completed series, the Finishing School books – but as they were for a YA audience I understood it and thought she handled the romance aspects of that series with aplomb. This little piece brought back all the spice and sizzle of Soulless, with an intriguing flair for readers of the Finishing School series, as we’re already acquainted with the main character! This is quite a different look at Preshea, as you might expect. Not a book for the middle-school readers, ou-la-la. You d0n’t, however, have to have read any of the prior books to enjoy this one. Poison or Protect is a novella, so the plot, while there, isn’t terribly exciting, and after all it’s a romance, straight-up. In fact, this might qualify for the “bodice-ripper” category of one of my reading challenges this year…not my usual cup of tea at all, but this is Gail we’re talking about. The prose is what I’ve come to expect from her – by turns sharp, witty, heart-melting, and hysterical. Knife-edged Preshea makes an appearance in usual form, but we get to see that flawless exterior crack (creek episodes not withstanding) here, despite her better judgment. And with a burly Scottish captain, no less. Scottish is definitely not what I would have pictured her with, but it definitely works. Works very well. I needed a glass of cold water after completing the read! The supporting cast is just as entertaining as can be and provide a wonderfully colorful background for the two main characters. I am eagerly awaiting the next installment in this little side series, which I’m delighted will also be in a print version at some point. For what it is, it gets 4/5 stars. It doesn’t have the pretense of being anything other than a romance set in an already established world, and for that it does very, very well.
dibbylodd More than 1 year ago
I'm happy to see that Carriger has maintained her fine form in a novella format. (Although I would have loved more story, just because.) This is a look at the results of male dominance at the time (for lack of a better description). The price paid by capable, but restricted, women--even those of significant talents and skills. It contains her usual light tough, despite the edgy undertone. Interesting characters, some familiar, some new. Witty conversations. And a remarkably sensitive male character.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
She has done it again. Although I am not a huge fan on novellas, this was a pleasurable read overall with the style that I love.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A thoroughly delightful addition!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A great adfition to my Gail book collection Can hardly wait for more"
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this to bits. Gail never fails, I adore everything she writes. I even came to like Presha, whose fashion choices where the only things I agreed with. I really want to hear more about these two. I can't wait for whatever she has in store next!