04/40: Timeless (by Gail Carringer)



by Gail Carringer

Published in 2012 by Orbit/Hachette Book Group

WHO: Alexia Tarabotti, Lady Macon, a soulless woman whose touch can render any preternatural being (e.g. vampire, werewolf, ghost…) into its human dimensions…

WHAT: has been invited to visit Matakara, the ancient vampire queen…

WHERE: at Luxor, Egypt…

WHEN: in 1876 (Victorian Era)…

WHY: to introduce her daughter, Prudence (who has unique abilities herself) to the queen for undisclosed reasons.

This is the fifth  and final title in the steam punk series, The Parasol Protectorate and finishes the adventures of Lady Macon in the light and fun manner in which followers of the series have come to expect. Romance, thrills and cozy mystery, combined with the supernatural-cum-commonplace, and an unreliable narrator make this a perfect summer read. The style is reminiscent of Elizabeth Peters’ novel, Crocodile on a Sandbank, in itself a pastiche of H.R. Haggard novels. 

+ As in every Parasol Protectorate novel, just when you think the story is  moving along conventional lines, something truly surprising happens, jolting the reader out of complacency and eagerly racing ahead to read more.

Timeless alludes to former adventures in without summary; so if you come into this novel without having read or refreshed your memory in regard to the the preceding novels, you may find yourself skating through the constructs (Why is the Kingair Alpha upset again, exactly?) though the action lines are strong enough to keep the story moving along.

– Nothing new in regard to introducing Steam Punk elements and, in fact the prime mode of transportation is a balloon rather than a dirigible.

n.b. Soulless, Changeless, Blamesless and Heartless are the first four novels in the Parasol Protectorate series respectively.

SEX/-UALITY, DRUGS, VIOLENCE: References to sex, homosexuality and nudity; but no bestiality or erotica. One vague reference to a hoookah while in Egypt; Blood noted and attacks scenes described, but not graphically in regard to injury.

OTHER: I borrowed a paperback edition of Timeless (by Gail Carringer) from the Jackson County Library System (Southern Oregon.)  I receive no monies, goods or services in exchange for reviewing the product and/or mentioning any of the persons or companies that are or may be implied in this post. 

I have challenged myself to read forty books this summer. Many books will be backlist titles as I’m trying to clear the stacks; but I have no doubt that new releases will make their way in too! 😉


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