Okay, admit that you want to read the book
The Golden Spider by Anne Renwick
Series: The Elemental Web Chronicles
Genre: Steampunk Romance
|London papers scream of dirigible attacks, kraken swarms, and lung-clogging, sulfurous fogs. But a rash of gypsy murders barely rates mention.
Lady Amanda is tired of having both her intelligence and her work dismissed.
After blackmailing her way into medical school, she catches the eye of her anatomy professor from the moment she walks into his lecture hall. Is he interested in her? Or only her invention–a clockwork spider that can spin artificial nerves?
Lord Thornton, a prominent neurobiologist, has been betrayed.
Secret government technology has been stolen from his laboratory, and a foreign spy is attempting to perfect it via a grisly procedure… using gypsies as test subjects. The last thing he needs is the distraction of a beautiful–and brilliant–new student, even if her spider could heal a deteriorating personal injury.
Until her device is stolen and used in the latest murder.
Lord Thornton has no option but to bring her into his laboratory as well as the investigation where they must fight their growing, yet forbidden, attraction. Bodies accumulate and fragile bonds are tested as they race across London, trying to catch the spy before it’s too late.
I am always on the lookout for a decent steampunk read and The Golden Spider blurb caught my attention. What is there not to like, Victorian London, intelligent and feisty female character and a growling male?
The book can be read as a mystery with a touch of romance. The steampunk world is mostly there with krakens and dirigibles. The clockwork spider was definitely a unique piece of equipment that I haven´t come across in any other books. The London setting is well described but could have had a bit more. The plot is well developed with a few twists that keeps reading interesting. I enjoyed the main characters and secondary characters are well written that along the book you grasp the different personalities. There are no editing issues in this book that I noticed, whether typos or grammatically.
My one negative remark on this book is the medical lingo, way too much and too detailed for someone without medical background. At a certain point I started skipping the dialogue feeling utterly lost and confused with the exchanges. There is also no way to verify what the author is saying is accurate or not, well I could google it but that is not the point of reading a book.
If you like steampunk you should enjoy this book, you will probably enjoy it more if you have some medical knowledge to help you through the technical dialogue. If like me you don´t, it´s still readable .
Overall I did enjoy this book and will read book 2 in the series, The Silver Skull.
I am sure that Jane Austen fans have imagined their own version of Mr Fitzwilliam Darcy, mine didn´t look like the actors Colin Firth or Matthew MacFadyen but he most certainly was tall, dark and handsome, broad chest and defined strong arms…. you get the picture.
Then comes along Professor John Sutherland from University College London and Professor Amanda Vickery from Queen Mary University of London and for a whole month they take on a study to gain a historically accurate idea of what Darcy would have looked like.
I wish they hadn’t.
The study revealed that the revered Darcy would have had powdered white hair, a pointy chin, a pale complexion, a long nose and sloping shoulders. Not quite the brooding, chiselled chap portrayed on-screen by modern-day actors.
His hair, according to the research, would have been mid-length and powdered white, reflective of the norms of the Austen era. His face would have been long and oval-shaped with a small mouth — common features among gentlemen of the era. His skin would have been pink and white; a sign of wealth and privilege.
His build would have been slender, with a “modest chest”, but with “large quads, thighs and calves”. According to the research, strong legs were an attractive and important feature to females of the time, with “well-modelled thighs a sign of virility, a good fencer and horseman”.
Unlike Colin Firth and Matthew MacFadyen — who are both over 6ft tall — the real Darcy would have only been 5ft 11 inches.
Either way, here is what he would have looked like, the powdered hair is enough to cringe and sloping shoulders? Nope. I will stick to my imagined version of Mr. Darcy this is fiction after all and isn´t that the purpose of reading? That we lose ourselves in somebody´s else´s world with a touch of our own?
I received an ARC of this book for an honest review. However, that said, this book is the final and refined product of a weekly serial that is posted free online by the Ilona Andrews duo on their website Innkeeper Chronicles – Free Fiction from Ilona Andrews
Fiction, especially urban fantasy in the first person is not my favorite form of reading it, mainly, because it is so difficult to do it properly. There are a few exceptions however, and Ilona Andrews nails it every time in every book. The writing is fluid and in constant motion, in this case from Dina DeMille´s point of view.
Dina does not tell you story, she shows you, you can see and feel the story. Descriptions are detailed but manage to avoid being lengthly and tedious. The characters are complete with flaws and strengths making them authentic even though they are supernatural or alien. No two characters are the same or even similar in their personalities.
This book was surprisingly emotional, there were parts that made me laugh, who would have thought that Arland had a sense of humor? “Are you going to war Lord Marshal?” “No, I was attending a formal dinner. They make us wear armor to these things so we don´t stab ourselves out of sheer boredom.”
We get to meet Dina´s sister Maud and her niece Helen. I´m a mother and if Helen was my kid I would be a warrior too. Their relationship is interesting and it develops throughout the story. Maud´s relationship with Arland is feisty and fun to watch the battle of wills.
New worlds, new species and once again Dina and Gertrude Hunt find themselves in a sensitive situation once more. There is plenty of action and some serious “kick ass” fighting, love the swords. And Wing, must confess that I have a soft spot for Wing. Cute creature.
Speaking of Gertrude Hunt, that is one of the most amazing characters, yes the inn is a character, it feels, yawns (which I found amusing) and has a life of its own. Ah, now comes the “Grab your Tissues” moment, the seed. Let me say that this is pathetic, but never have I ever felt so much sorrow and sadness for a seed. As much as it costs me to say this, I did spill a tear or two for that seed.
Moving on, Sean, well yes, Sean loses control once or twice. Okay fine, a few times but he is after all a wolf and the development of his relationship with Dina is smooth and natural as it should be, nothing is forced or rushed. Everything about them happens when it should.
My question is about the cat, “Who the hell is Sebastien North?”
Book will be available on December 20th
READ THIS BOOK! If you like dark, original, beautiful, twisted and unpredictable this is the book for you.
The advantage of having cool FB friends is that you get their books before the release date, I, am extremely lucky and had the good fortune to read it. My review? Emm… well you all know I am not much of a writer so bare with me.
That blurb below, forget it, J.L. Murray makes it out as if it´s just another paranormal book, believe me it is not. Nothing prepared me for the original story line, the amazing characters, the constant twists in the plot or the beautiful writing. A touch of darkness permeates every page and grips you until you reach the last one. Definitely a 6 star read.
Frankie Mourning died on a Thursday. Then she came back.
Tasked with killing the killers – people with the blood of Cain running through their veins – Frankie always gets her villain. But this time it’s different. This time she has to go home. Something strange is happening in Helmville, Montana. People are dying at an alarming rate, and the sheriff is ruling them all accidents and suicides. Nothing is as it seems and Frankie soon finds herself sucked into the tangled and seemingly supernatural mystery. Because the people acting strangely, the people killing everyone around her are haunting the mirrors. Now Frankie’s own reflection is behaving strangely and seems hellbent on causing her harm.
In a world enmeshed in remote beauty, dark magic, and violent memories, Frankie feels lost. Luckily, a detective on the run for murder shows up. Thomas Dekker wants to help and claims he cares about Frankie. But daring to trust him could cost her everything.
Looking for something special for the X-mas tree? Look no further, on the 20th of December is the release date of the third book in the Innkeeper Chronicles. If you don´t know them go on over to Ilona Andrews website for more information on these great books Ilona Andrews Innkeeper Chronicles
Dina DeMille may run the nicest Bed and Breakfast in Red Deer, Texas, but she caters to very particular kind of guest… the kind that no one on Earth is supposed to know about. Guests like a former intergalactic tyrant with an impressive bounty on her head, the Lord Marshal of a powerful vampire clan, and a displaced-and-superhot werewolf; so don’t stand too close, or you may be collateral damage.
But what passes for Dina’s normal life is about to be thrown into chaos. First, she must rescue her long-distant older sister, Maud, who’s been exiled with her family to a planet that functions as the most lawless penal colony since Botany Bay. Then she agrees to help a guest whose last chance at saving his civilization could bring death and disaster to all Dina holds dear. Now Gertrude Hunt is under siege by a clan of assassins. To keep her guests safe and to find her missing parents, Dina will risk everything, even if she has and may have to pay the ultimate price. Though Sean may have something to say about that.