I am currently reading my way through a long list of science fiction and fantasy titles. (http://www.npr.org/2011/08/07/138938145/science-fiction-and-fantasy-finalists if you are interested in the list).
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.
I can’t believe that I neglected this series for so long! It is such fun! Gail Carriger has a sense of humour that I understand and appreciate. I love her steampunk Victorian world with its werewolves, vampires, and the Soulless, like her main character Alexia. It’s this addition of a new category of supernatural which really gives her an advantage--when you create something new, you can write something original and fresh.
I’m highly disappointed that my city library doesn’t have the remaining two volumes of this series. I’ve placed an interlibrary loan request for the next one, as I know for sure that I want to read it. I’m pleased to note that she has two more related series, Finishing School and The Custard Protocol, which I also look forward to reading.
When I originally began reading steampunk fantasies, I wasn’t quite sure what to make of them. However, as I encounter more of them that are well done, such as this series, I have been converted. Now they are among my favourites. I think the modern attitudes, juxtaposed with the Victorian sensibility, makes for excellent opportunities for humour.
I’m late to the party, Ms. Carriger, but I’m enjoying myself immensely now and I’ll be staying right until the end!