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Heartless by Gail Carriger
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Member:ablachly
Title:Heartless
Authors:Gail Carriger
Info:Orbit (2011), Edition: Original, Mass Market Paperback, 400 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
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Heartless by Gail Carriger

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Showing 1-5 of 89 (next | show all)
A good installation of the parasol protectorate. Lots of twist that I did not see coming at all. I was really surprised by what we learn about the professor. Alexia Macon continues to be one of my favorite heroines. ( )
  bookjunkie57 | Apr 17, 2015 |
Synopsis: Alexis is in the later stages of pregnancy, but this hasn't stopped her from tending to her duties as the alpha of a werewolf pack or the muhjah of the Shadow Council. With the ghosts uneasy and a new member of the pack to help integrate, Alexis finds herself embroiled in a murder plot against the Queen; she also finds that her sister has been duplicitous yet again.
Reviews: I enjoy these books partly because of the strong female figures and because they are such a romp through murder and mayhem with a good dose of untidy relationship issues thrown in. This is a well written story that give little away while neatly sewing up loose ends. However, there are enough unanswered questions to tempt the reader to pick up the next book in the series. ( )
  DrLed | Apr 7, 2015 |
For more reviews, gifs, Cover Snark and more, visit A Reader of Fictions.

Guys, it’s so hard to review later books in series that are pretty much par for the course for the series. It makes me wish I did series as a single review, but that presents many difficulties too. So whatever, this will be a short review. I think. Though I’ve said that before and been laughably wrong. Heartless definitely left me whelmed, which is better than some of the books in the series, but also not as thrilling as the first installment.

Yet again, Carriger’s book is highly entertaining. They’re fun listens even when they’re infuriating, which this one was not. They keep my attention and I don’t really get tired of them. They’re also rather addictive. Carriger’s got a light, silly, snarky tone that I rather enjoy. All of her characters are basically parodies of themselves, but knowingly so. Also, Heartless had fairly minimal Ivy, which is always a blessing.

My favorite part of Heartless was the upping of the LGBTQ+ themes. Basically, I don’t want to spoil it, but another main character is revealed to have attraction to those of their same sex. Totally called it, though not the past romance. All I ask is that there be an actual gay ship in the last book, because for all that there are tons of gay characters, all of their romances have been split apart by circumstances.

Once again, though, the plot of Heartless seems rather minimal, and is accomplished by a change in narrative style. There were these weird bits from the perspective of ghosts, in an attempt to up the tension; this was ineffective, since this isn’t the sort of series to kill people off. Plus, that was just a weird change. Anyway, the ghosts warn that someone will try to kill the queen and Alexia’s off to solve the mystery, despite being MASSIVELY pregnant. I mean, there is a plot, but it’s all dependent on these ghosts being unable to say what’s happening clearly and it’s so artificial.

Then there’s the pregnancy. Those who know me well know that I have zero interest in pregnancy and babies. That said, Alexia’s pregnancy, while oft-mentioned, doesn’t really bother me. She’s not of a maternal frame of mind either, referring to her impending baby as the “infant inconvenience.” Actually, I think I was more concerned about the safety of her child than SHE was. Alexia spends the whole book getting knocked over, and I honestly don’t get how the kid came out of it okay. The comedic value of a pregnant woman falling over is minimal even to a hard-hearted bitch like me. It’s not funny, because of the danger inherent, at least to me.

Call me heartless, but Heartless was just okay. At this point, I’m still recommending sticking to book one as the strongest, but we’ll see how I feel after the final installment, Timeless. ( )
  A_Reader_of_Fictions | Apr 6, 2015 |
4½ Stars

This review is also published at http://thebookaholiccat.com

Heartless is book four in The Parasol Protectorate series by Gail Carriger.

I have forgotten how good and hilariously smart these books were, ok with the exception of the previous book Blameless… nobody is perfect.

In this installment, eight months pregnant Alexia is running around London solving problems left and right, avoiding assassination attempts and trying to find out the truth about a tip received from an unknown ghost about a plot to kill the Queen. The infant-inconvenience makes things more difficult for her and funnier for us. It’s not just her humongous size that makes her slow down and be tired. But more important is her appetite; everything reminds her of food and when Alexia is hungry, Alexia needs to eat.

"She seemed to spend all her time either eating or dozing-sometimes dozing while eating and, once or twice, eating while dozing. Pregnancy had given her a new window into the human capacity for consumption".

It has got to the point that all member of The Pack are carrying food with them in case Alexia gets hungry. And don’t even put a Treacle Tart in front of her, everything will pass to a second place after the tart.

I love Alexia and Lord Maccon relationship. Alexia is all proper and ladylike while Maccon doesn’t care a bit for society rules. I love how much they enjoy their discussions, as much as their more private activities.

"Lord Maccon barked at his wife authoritatively. Lord Maccon was always barking at his wife, the form of his body mattering not one jot.
Alexia dismissed the commanding tone…"


All the characters we love from previous books Lord Akeldama, Professor Lyall, Ivy Tunstall, Madam Lefoux, Biffy, Floote and even stupid Felicity are present in this book and a new and tiny one made his/her debut.
Some secrets from the past are shared and some others have been left to be discover. I really would like to know everything Floote knows and hope Mrs. Carriger would share his knowledge with us in the next and last installment of this series, Timeless.

One of my favorite scenes is when the Parasol Protectorate is officially created and its first member does her pledge to the secret organization. That scene was just perfect.

My final thought: After a little bit of a disappointment with Blameless, Mrs. Carriger restored my faith in her with Heartless. This is one of those books you cannot judge by its cover, because (in my opinion) the cover is hideous but the book is great. (I don’t know why they change the format of the cover; the previous covers were thousand times better.)
Heartless is a funny, entangling book with a good plot, some twist and turns and very interesting and different characters.
The steampunk factor is perfectly balance with the story, it doesn’t feel overwhelming or steals the spot from the characters.
In my opinion Heartless is the best book in the series and I can’t wait for March of next year to read Timeless.
This book is not a stand-alone and it should be read as part of the series and the series should be read in order.
I recommend this book and this series to all Steampunk lovers, or paranormal historical fans or anyone who would like to read a nice, different and fun book. ( )
  BookaholicCat | Mar 4, 2015 |
The events of this book are so ridiculous at times that you can't help but laugh. Alexia is a very flexible person, even down to who she manages to be friends with. I'd like to be a little more like her in that sense, though she has a very strenuous lifestyle that I would not like to live! ( )
  tjsjohanna | Jan 19, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 89 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Gail Carrigerprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Gray, EmilyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Panepinto, LaurenCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ricci, DonnaCover modelsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Notation to the Records, Subject P-464-AT, Alexia Tarabotti
Archivist: Mr. Phinkerlington, junior clerk, aethographic transmission specialist, second class
Subject P-464-AT is with child, sire unknown.
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Lady Alexia Maccon, soulless, is at it again, only this time the trouble is not her fault. When a mad ghost threatens the queen, Alexia is on the case, following a trail that leads her deep into her husband's past. Top that off with a sister who has joined the suffragette movement (shocking!), Madame Lefoux's latest mechanical invention, and a plague of zombie porcupines and Alexia barely has time to remember she happens to be eight months pregnant.

Will Alexia manage to determine who is trying to kill Queen Victoria before it is too late? Is it the vampires again or is there a traitor lurking about in wolf's clothing? And what, exactly, has taken up residence in Lord Akeldama's second best closet?

-Back cover
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Lady Alexia Maccon, soulless, is at it again, only this time the trouble is not her fault. When a mad ghost threatens the queen, Alexia is on the case, following a trail that leads her deep into her husband's past.

(summary from another edition)

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