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Gail Carriger

Books 1, 2 and 3, The Parasol Protectorate

Soulless

Orbit (2009)

Changeless

Orbit (2010)

Blameless

Orbit (2010)

ISBN: 978-0-316-07415-5

Reviewed by Tehani Wessely

I was first exposed to what’s become known as The Parasol Protectorate series (the books are subtitled as being “Alexia Tarabotti novels”) a number of months ago, via a great video showing the creation of the cover of Blameless. This did the rounds on the ‘net showing how cover design comes together in a very cool way. I watched it a few times, thinking how clever it was, but that the book itself didn’t look like my sort of thing. HOW WRONG I WAS! When Tansy and Alex started raving about the books, I knew I had to try them. Then I received a review copy of Blameless and that decided it – Soulless and Changeless became my only Aussiecon 4 prescribed purchases, and when I finally got the chance to read them, it was to the exclusion of all else.

I’m not really sure what I thought these books were about, when I first saw them appearing in bookstores and via the cover design video (which I now recognise as some very smart marketing!). I guarantee I did not realise they were funny, smart, paranormal fantasy set in an almost real historical world, populated by suave and sinister vampires, tough and militant werewolves and a society that has built itself around its supernatural inhabitants. Did I mention funny?

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Gail Carriger

Orbit (2010)

ISBN: 978-0316074148

Reviewed by Tansy Roberts, Syndicated July 2010

Yes, I grabbed this one as soon as I saw it (spotted in an actual bookshop no less!) and gobbled it up pretty damn fast. While Changeless didn’t feel quite so intense as its predecessor Soulless, I was impressed at how comfortably the world set up in the first book continues. While there is a fairly enormous gap between the world of the Parasol Protectorate and actual Victorian London, I would take Carriger and her Alexia over Charles Dickens any day of the week.

It’s hard to discuss this one without spoiling the end of Book 1 for readers, so all I can say cagily is that Alexia’s situation has changed greatly, and she has settled into her new roles rather well, and we get to spend plenty of time with all the good characters from the first book, and get to know some great new ones.

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