Author: Gail Carriger
Length: 386 pages
Published in: 2012
Genre: fiction (alternate history, vampires/werewolves)
Challenges/Resolutions: Copyright 2012 Resolution
Summary (from Goodreads):
Alexia Tarabotti, Lady Maccon, has settled into domestic bliss. Of course, being Alexia, such bliss involves integrating werewolves into London High society, living in a vampire’s second best closet, and coping with a precocious toddler who is prone to turning supernatural willy-nilly. Even Ivy Tunstell’s acting troupe’s latest play, disastrous to say the least, cannot put a damper on Alexia’s enjoyment of her new London lifestyle.
Until, that is, she receives a summons from Alexandria that cannot be ignored. With husband, child, and Tunstells in tow, Alexia boards a steamer to cross the Mediterranean. But Egypt may hold more mysteries than even the indomitable Lady Maccon can handle. What does the vampire Queen of the Alexandria Hive really want from her? Why is the God-Breaker Plague suddenly expanding? And how has Ivy Tunstell suddenly become the most popular actress in all the British Empire?
My Thoughts: Going into this book, I admit I was a little sad. It’s the final installment of the Parasol Protectorate quintet I’ve been enjoying the last few years. This was by no means a level of sadness such as those brought on by Deathly Hallows or Mockingjay, but it’s always a little sad when a book series, however short, ends.
Timeless takes place a couple of years after the previous book, Heartless. Alexia and Conall’s daughter, Prudence, is now a tot and worries worldwide supernaturals. She is what Carriger calls a “metanatural”, meaning she can steal supernatural powers from a person, turning them mortal and herself supernatural through contact. (This is unlike Alexia, who can simply neutralize a supernatural, but only while she maintains contact, and she herself doesn’t become supernatural at all.) Prudence is summoned to Egypt of all places. I quite enjoyed the trek to Victorian-era Alexandria and Luxor. If nothing else, it was a nice change of pace from London. There was definitely an exotic feel to the story, like with the hot-air balloons.
I will say that I was a little unimpressed by some of Carriger’s choice of words in this book. One sentence in particular I found very…crass.
There was something about connubial relations that appealed, sticky as they might be. (p80)
I found that uncalled for and a bit disgusting. However true some statements might be, some are just better left unsaid.
But that won’t keep me from trying out Carriger’s spin-off series, Parasol Protectorate Abroad, featuring Prudence (presumably a bit mire grown-up haha) that is due out fall 2013. I hope it just doesn’t turn out to be one of those types of sequels that goes on when it should’ve just ended on a high note.