I'm always excited to share a series of books that I loved so much I practically devoured them. This series is one of those. The Parasol Protectorate Series by Gail Carriger currently consists of "Soulless", "Changeless", and "Blameless" with "Heartless" available for pre-order and scheduled for release June 28, 2011.
"Soulless" by Gail Carriger
Soulless is a book about Alexia Tarabotti and takes place in Victorian England. Alexia is "soulless" or otherwise known as "preternatural", which means when Alexia touches a vampire or werewolf, they change back to a mortal as long as she maintains physical contact with them. Not surprisingly, her status as a preternatural is looked down upon by supernaturals, who feel threatened by her power. Given her 1/2 Italian heritage, her curvy figure and age, her family long ago wrote her off as unmarriageable material, which Alexia accepted a little too easily.
While living with a low self-esteem, Alexia is anything but weak... especially with her trusty silver tipped parasol that she uses in self-defense should she find herself in a bind.
Enter the werewolf alpha Lord Macon, who investigates the death of a vampire who got a little too close to Alexia's parasol. Conall Macon takes a special interest in Alexia, though he's not sure if he has positive or negative feelings toward her and vice versa. Vampires and Werewolves are disappearing and whoever is behind it, turns their sites on eliminating Miss Alexia as well.
One thing is for sure, while Alexia tries to keep the rules of Victorian society in dress and manners, her strong-willed personality and pension for saying exactly what's she's thinking keeps her friends and family on their toes.
"Changeless" by Gail Carriger
All the supernaturals in town are losing their powers and turning mortal. While Alexia may not be the cause, she's certainly blamed for it. Her new position as Protectorate for Queen Victoria means she must help figure out what's causing this to happen, and help to fix it. Her quest brings her, Lord Macon, her new acquaintance and steampunkish-inventor Madame Lefoux (among others) to Scotland to try to find the source.
Alexia's friendship deepens with the flamboyant vampire Lord Akeldama who doesn't let anything get in the way of his fondness for her. He's always available to provide cryptic information to help Alexia in her endeavors.
Madame Lefoux provided Alexia with a tricked-out new parasol, but can Alexia really trust her? And who is repeatedly trying to kill her?
"Blameless" by Gail Carriger
"Blameless" starts out with Alexia being rejected by her family, friends and even society as her morals are publicly questioned in the newspaper. One of the only people who still supports Alexia is the flamboyant vampire Lord Akeldama, and he has disappeared.
Finding herself once again dodging assassination attempts, and out of options, Alexia flees to Italy to try to find answers about preternaturals as well as try to find a way to prove to everyone that she has been misjudged.
Italy brings new discoveries for Alexia, who has fallen in love with this green basil & garlic sauce these crazy Italians put on their pasta. The Knights Templar give her refuge from the vampires who are trying to kill her, but can she really trust them? What is their agenda with the preternaturals? And who is this mysterious werewolf who keeps showing up at the right time to save her?
The Parasol Protectorate Series is an adult (not YA) series filled with witty banter, humor, sex, suspense and fun. This is a series I traded many hours of sleep to read, and still I don't know which Alexia values more... her life, or a good cup of tea.
I've pre-ordered "Heartless" and cannot wait to revisit these characters and see what the future holds for them!