Set in an alternate Victorian England, this tale is wonderfully witty, full of humor, set within a horrific story . Miss Tarrabotti is what they call a preternatural, that can neutralize the effects of the supernatural. She is one of very few of her kind, who finds herself in all kinds of predicaments that ends up in the hands of the supernaturals' own police dept, thus enters Lord Maccon. These two are always at odds, thus becoming attracted to each other, with banter that delights the listener. Elsewhere, in the story is a group of sinister scientists that are out to exterminate anything unnatural, putting our main characters in peril. The whole book is made up of a very amusing group of characters that keeps us in chuckles while solving mysterious disappearances of vampires and werewolves.
The narration is excellent in capturing the language and wit intended.
This series fills me with polarizing emotions. On the one hand, the blending of so many genres is delightfully creative, and it's clear the author has considerable imagination. The characters themselves are all very appealing and distinctive. And there are some very funny moments. On the other hand, there are decidedly weak points. I'm not sure if this is the narrator, whose voice I find inexplicably irritating because it sounds like she's trying too hard to enunciate, or the writing, but every time there is a scene of suspense, I want to scream, "Get to the point!" Somehow the narrator and/or author have no sense of urgency and bog us down in boring detail and an agonizingly slow play-by-play. Throughout the entire series, scenes that probably take 5 minutes within the story take something like a half hour of narration with so much description. Also, for all the clever wordplay, I want to ban the phrases "at this juncture" and "with this matter." They have long since ceased to be witty.
Love the series although this is not my typical genre. I was eager to listen to the audible book but the narrator is awful. So disappointing.
I would recommend this book to a friend and have already done so. I have also listened to it for a second time.
Alexia is a strong, intelligent and interesting character who is at odds with her status and with her century's expectations of women.
I thought that Emily Gray's performance was wonderful. Her British accent was perfect and really brought me into the story and the world in which it is set.
Fantasy meets Steam-Punk -- let the fun begin.
Strong Intelligent Character
I Shall Wear Midnight - different feel to the books but the female leads in both are strong women who haven't the perfect life, looks or "all the answers" - but they still manage to mold their worlds with their natural abilities - regardless of who (or what) stands in their way!
Alexia takes time during the wedding day preparations to keep a promise made to Lord Akeldama.
Laughed often... but would love to know more about the hedgehog incident
I hope the storyline is continued - so many options with the new characters introduced during the series.
Soulless was the Audible Deal of the Day a couple months ago, and, since it was a book I'd been wanting to read, I immediately gave Amazon some more of my money. The reviews for Soulless by friends were very encouraging and the narrator is British, so why not, right? Good choice, past self! Soulless' audiobook was almost eleven hours of pure entertainment. What more can I possibly want than a badass spinster with an attack parasol, some cool mythology, and rampant sexy times? Not a whole lot more, honestly. I'm a happy consumer right now.
Alexia Tarabotti is fabulous. She's not really physically strong, but she's a beast in every other way. Her intellect is mighty and she's stubborn like no one else in the world. She's a spinster and totally okay with that status, but doesn't see any reason why that should mean she's not fashionable. Also, she's a bit insecure, because her mom and stepsisters rag on her constantly about how unlovable her smartness, muleheadedness, and Italian looks make her. No matter how much natural sense of your self-worth you have, this sort of talk from your own family, who's meant to love you, or your friends will just demolish your self-esteem. Basically, I felt a lot for this woman right out the gate. It also didn't hurt that she was always searching for food, like in the opening scene where she goes to a party and it doesn't have food so she orders some because really dancing and no food is unacceptable.
The one thing that really bothers Alexia isn't her lack of marriage prospects or even her family that doesn't understand her; it's her lack of occupation. Yes, she's a wealthy lady and lives a life of great privilege, but she's bored. She has few intellectual equals in her social circle and certainly none in her family. She wants to do something. Preferably, Alexia would like a position in the organization that controls paranormals, but Lord Maccon absolutely refuses to hire a gentlelady. THE NERVE.
Right, so paranormal things. Soulless has fabbity fab paranormal mythology. There are vampires and werewolves, and they're fairly standard, only in this world they have very strong ideas about fashion. A vampire or werewolf not properly attired will totally be mocked mercilessly by the other paranormal creatures, which is hilarious to me. Anyway, Alexia is herself not paranormal; she's something more rare. Alexia is a preternatural, which means that she negates paranormal powers. When she touches a vampire, he/she becomes human again. This power was a totally new concept for me, and I thought it was awesome. Also, for all that Alexia's the only one in the book with this power, it's definitely not a super special snowflake chosen one thing. They're rare, but not unheard of; her dad was one for example, which is how she came to be.
It will come as a shock to positively no one that my favorite part of the book was the romance. I mean, come on. The first thing to know is that, though it feels a bit instalovey, Alexia and Lord Maccon have known each other for ages before the book began. So basically they've been hate to loving slowly over the years and the reader pops in just in time for the good bits. After a long time without any ships that will freaking KISS ALREADY, Soulless was incredibly satisfying. I was not expecting how satisfying and just YES. Much kissing and it is all fabulous.
Aside from Alexia and Lord Maccon, the rest of the cast is suitably quirky. My personal favorites are Lyall and Floote. Lyall is a totally Giles-y type, only he's the second in command in Maccon's wolf pack. I'm really hoping he gets a ship of some sort in the course of the series. Floote is Alexia's long-suffering but secretly rooting-her-on butler, and I enjoy how he pops in to offer looks of judgment or assistance to her shenanigans. There's also a potentially adorbs ship for Alexia's best friend Ivy Hisselpenny. Also, serious thanks to whoever put the characters on GR, because Gail Carriger's spellings are seriously not conducive to guessing how to spell any damn name if you listened to the audiobook.
Fun as it was, there were some parts where the book dragged. Any time it was Maccon and Alexia, I was totally into it. During the action scenes (I'm including matches of wits in verbal confrontations in this), also very much entertained. However, there's a section in the late middle where Alexia's talking with her vampire friend Lord Akeldama which was way too long for my tastes and a bit let's-recount-the-plot. The big confrontation also ends with quite a bit of book left and it meanders its way to a conclusion. That part was good , but again felt like it could have used a bit of trimming.
The audiobook added immensely to my enjoyment, as Emily Gray makes a fabulous Alexia. Her Scottish accent is a hoot as well. The only negative I really have to offer about this format is that the production is not seamless. As usual with Recorded Books, there are often weirdly long pauses or audible breaths or even some scratchiness in the audio quality, all which really should have been edited out. However, I enjoy Gray's performance so much that I'm definitely sticking with the audiobook.
Soulless by Gail Carriger is fluff of the finest order. The characters are such fun, the paranormal creatures creatively drawn, and the romance passionate. This is steampunk goodness and I will be reading more without a doubt. Actually, I purchased the second book in the series when I was about halfway done with Soulless, which ought to tell you something.
Not sure who came first, but they share some similarities. This book was very well read w/ creative voices. The story showed a very practical heroine, so much so that I laughed outloud throughout. And the male counterpart has a Scottish brogue...terrific. Just a bit of romance in there without too much mushy. A fun read/listen.
A highly entertaining story with a wonderful narrator. I enjoyed this story very much and am looking forward to the rest of the series.
The sound is terrible, the story line is scattered.
The narrator sounds like a silly schoolgirl.
I was totally disappointed that I spent money on this silly book
Do not waste your money, buy something from a decent author.
Myst/thrillers and ✨fun fantasies✨are my favorites but always open for a good story.
This book started out with a good story and as it went along got very wordy and slower paced than I like, but a very cute romance story. Paranormal comedy is a fun combination and the characters were colorful, however, like I said it could have been condensed. My first Steampunk Victorian. I liked it well enough but not sure if I would read the next in the series.