Heartless: Parasol Protectorate #4 by Gail Carriger

Heartless: Parasol Protectorate #4 by Gail Carriger

Alexia is back again in the fourth of the Parasol Protectorate series by Gail Carriger, this one also narrated by Emily Gray. Please read on for my review of


Alexia is now about eight months along, and she and Conall are back to their ‘pre-his-freak out and despicable behavior’ moments in the last few months. And yes, while he’s ‘trying’ to make up for his missteps (badly) that’s not the primary focus of Alexia’s day. See, there’s a ghost who may or may not be connected to reality with a warning: someone is going to assassinate the Queen, and Alexia still has vampires looking to assassinate her and her unborn child, even as Akeldama is back and trying to keep them back. When you add in more information about Lyall’s past, and a curious sidetrack into Madame Lefoux and her woes, as well as more ‘shine time’ for Biffy in all of his heartbreaking and conflicted glory.

The story here was slower to develop, and information we’d not before had did manage to add layers and interrupt the pacing that has come to define Alexia’s earlier behavior and actions didn’t take hold until about halfway on. Backstories and information fill out the why of much of the earlier action, and some of the quirks (particularly with Akeldama) dance around the foppish and centimeters left of annoying: although it is clear that he’s truly enjoying his association with Alexia, even as his ‘pet endearments’ border on ridiculous. But, that’s for another time: there are mysteries to solve and a soon-to-be infant to be protected.

And the plot takes off in twelve directions: all of them clever (even those I don’t agree with) and most of them carrying the silliness and joy that I expect from this series and Carriger’s writing. From the questions about the Woolsey pack to the traitor in the Queen’s vicinity, there are few moments that don’t delight in ways that I’ve come to expect. Emily Gray brings Alexia to life with her portrayal, and allows a tinge of ‘just this side of put on” for Akeldema’s voice, you can almost feel him strutting about in brightly colored clothes, tailored to perfection. From the sorrow and confusion from Biffy, to the questions and decisions to be made about Alexia’s baby, each moment was given the time and respect it deserves as a part of this series and characters that have come to be so important to those of us who are following the series. Possibly the least engaging (at least early on) of the series for me, I still can’t wait to see the next in the series!

Stars: Overall 4  Narration: 4 Story: 3

Heartless: Parasol Protectorate #4 by Gail Carriger

Title: Heartless
Author: Gail Carriger
Series: Parasol Protectorate #4
Also in this series: Soulless, Changeless , Blameless, Timeless
Genre: British, Historic Elements, Paranormal, Science Fiction / Steampunk, Victorian
Narrator: Emily Gray
Published by: Hachette Audio, Orbit
ISBN: 0316127191
Published on: 1 July, 2011
Pages: 374
Audio Length: 11 Hours: 19 minutes
Rated: four-stars
Heat: One FlameHalf a Flame

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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?

A copy of this title was provided via for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.


About Gail Carriger

New York Times Bestseller Gail Carriger writes comedies of manners mixed with paranormal romance (and the sexy San Andreas Shifter series as G.L. Carriger). Her books include the Parasol Protectorate, Custard Protocol, and Supernatural Society series for adults, and the Finishing School series for young adults. She is published in many languages and has over a dozen New York Times bestsellers. She was once an archaeologist and is fond of shoes, octopuses, and tea


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