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Soulless: An Alexia Tarabotti Novel | [Gail Carriger]

Soulless: An Alexia Tarabotti Novel

Victorian romance mixes seamlessly with elegant prose and biting wit—and werewolves—in Gail Carriger’s delightful debut novel. Soulless introduces Alexia Tarabotti, a parasol-wielding Londoner getting dangerously close to spinster status. But there are more important things than finding a husband. For Alexia was born without a soul, giving her the ability to render any vampire or werewolf completely powerless.
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Publisher's Summary

Victorian romance mixes seamlessly with elegant prose and biting wit—and werewolves—in Gail Carriger’s delightful debut novel. Soulless introduces Alexia Tarabotti, a parasol-wielding Londoner getting dangerously close to spinster status. But there are more important things than finding a husband. For Alexia was born without a soul, giving her the ability to render any vampire or werewolf completely powerless.

©2009 Tofa Borregaard (P)2010 Recorded Books, LLC

What the Critics Say

"Carriger debuts brilliantly with a blend of Victorian romance, screwball comedy of manners and alternate history....This intoxicatingly witty parody will appeal to a wide cross-section of romance, fantasy and steampunk fans." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (3082 )
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Story
4.3 (2280 )
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Andrea Milton, MA, United States 01-22-13
    Andrea Milton, MA, United States 01-22-13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    42
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Light & Engaging"
    What did you love best about Soulless?

    Interesting combination of historical elements and fantasy


    What about Emily Gray’s performance did you like?

    Great voice and treatment of characters


    Any additional comments?

    You're committing to the whole series. This is one of those new books that is written to be part of a set - not a self contained story. But the series is quite fun.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amy Charlotte, NC, United States 01-16-13
    Amy Charlotte, NC, United States 01-16-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    47
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    8
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Awesome Book!"
    If you could sum up Soulless in three words, what would they be?

    Witty, Fun, Exciting


    What other book might you compare Soulless to and why?

    I don't think I've read a book like Soulless before.


    Which character – as performed by Emily Gray – was your favorite?

    Lord Connel McCon.


    Any additional comments?

    I loved this book! It was funny and exciting, had a bit of mystery, and a romance to boot! I don't normally like things set too far in the past, but this book was awesome. The narrator was awesome too! Every time I think of Miss. Tarabotti, I hear her voice. I definitely reccomend this book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Desarae QUINCY, WA, United States 01-10-13
    Desarae QUINCY, WA, United States 01-10-13 Member Since 2010

    Designer. Aviation Enthusiast. Fitness Instructor. Love books. Prefer long series with happy endings in mystery, comedy, fantasy, & romance.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    29
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    158
    49
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    13
    8
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "What a tale of history, fantasy and adventure"
    Would you listen to Soulless again? Why?

    I'm not much for rewatching movies or rereading books.We shall see but if I did this would be a good one to revisit.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Soulless?

    I've enjoyed this entire series. I'm on the last two books now which is why I'm revisiting the review section to give it due. These books have been very entertaining.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I've loved these books and listening to the Miss Terriboti grow up into a women of measures. She is beyond interesting as a character. I'm so happy Emily Gray remained the reader for all the books. You really get into the book through the reader and she gives each character their own voice and emotion. The way she pitches the doctors voices in later books with enthusiasm or gives Ivy her snuffy airless ring. The adventures really come to life. I've even googled meany of the era's mentioned happenings like the dirigible travel to learn more and found a steam punk group in my city.


    Any additional comments?

    If my former comments where not enough I'd just like to reiterate how much I've enjoyed these books and hopes the author continues with them. They would make for very interesting movies, although the producers would probably never do it justice. The warewolves, phantoms, souless and vampires all become loveable characters. This book is not a drama but an adventure full of mystery, wonder and excitement. This is the book in the series that gets you to fall in love, as Miss Terriboty would.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Oregon Bibliophile 01-09-13 Member Since 2004
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    17
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An enjoyable romp through Victorian England"

    As a fan of Elizabeth Peters and Steampink, I am very happy to find a new series to enjoy. The narration is excellent and adds to the story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Angela Eloy, AZ, United States 01-09-13
    Angela Eloy, AZ, United States 01-09-13 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    81
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    59
    20
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    2
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    Performance
    Story
    "Sookie Stackhouse with a parasol"
    Any additional comments?

    This book could be Sookie Stackhouse (True Blood series) went thru a time warp and stepped out in the 19th century, and her southern accent was replaced with an upper crust english accent. Haven't decided if I want to continue the series, just as in TB this book has sex scene that just really are not necessary to the story.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    nicole Charlotte, NC, United States 01-04-13
    nicole Charlotte, NC, United States 01-04-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    4
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    0
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    "Simply Horrible!"

    I decided to give this book a try based on the positive reviews. What a waste of time and credit this purchase was! I personally had to force myself to listen to the first half and just "tossed in the towel" when it came time for the second half. I found the story to be so boring and over all juvenile! I am a fan of such authors as Stephen King and Anne Rice but I have also enjoyed the The Twilight Series and The Vampire Diaries. So please understand when I use the word "juvenile" I am in reference to the authors choice of words and over all construction of the book. As far as the narrator I feel bad saying this but her voice was irritating! Which for me is very odd since I find most British accents to be soothing. I do not know if that is her "normal" reading voice or if she is "acting". This is the first book I have ever purchased from this author and this narrator. Considering all; it will be my last.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Randa Chatham, ON, Canada 11-10-12
    Randa Chatham, ON, Canada 11-10-12 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    42
    8
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    "Mixed Pleasure - takes some getting used to"
    Where does Soulless rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    This is kind of a mid-range book, neither the best nor the worst from my listening list. It took a while to warm up to - at first, the umbrella-as-weapon and British heroine assumption of solving any mystery seemed like a total ripoff of the Amelia Peabody series. That really irked me, so it took about halfway through the book to let go of comparing every little thing and just get into the story.

    After a second listen though, and Emily Grey's lovely narration (better at female characters than the males), I tucked away comparisons and just enjoyed the story and humor. There are so many touches of self-deprecating humor throughout the book, it makes me smile. Without giving too much of the plot away, an example is Alexia's outrage that the vampire who tried to attack her fell into a treacle tart that Alexia had been planning to enjoy. Unexpected, but sets up her character very early in the book.

    The author is quite good at introducing characters in a way that helps you never get lost as to who is who in the story - right from the beginning, she attaches character traits or mannerisms so that you can picture the character and relate to them.

    There's no depth of plot to speak of, but for a light listen while you go about your day, I'd recommend it. I like pairing books with whatever else I'm trying to do at the time - this book fits right in with tedious housework tasks, helps keep your mood light so time and the tasks pass by easily instead of being chores you can't wait to finish.


    Which character – as performed by Emily Gray – was your favorite?

    The book is all about Alexia, so I suppose I should say she's the favorite, but I found myself liking some of the minor characters whose names escape me at the moment (her best friend with the strange hats, the gay vampire is quite funny...)


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J S BROOKLYN, NY, United States 11-05-12
    J S BROOKLYN, NY, United States 11-05-12 Member Since 2011

    SHopper

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    48
    5
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    0
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    "Great introduction to author's world & characters"
    What made the experience of listening to Soulless the most enjoyable?

    The wit of the writer.


    What other book might you compare Soulless to and why?

    none come to mind but I am doing this quickly between tasks.


    Which character – as performed by Emily Gray – was your favorite?

    the hero


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    no


    Any additional comments?

    no

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Daniel O. Buchholz Arlington, VA USA 10-15-12
    Daniel O. Buchholz Arlington, VA USA 10-15-12 Member Since 2004

    Computer Geek

    HELPFUL VOTES
    66
    ratings
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    191
    45
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    13
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    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Soulless sucks you in"

    I really like this book. I read a lot of fiction with Vampires and Werewolves in them, and the most interesting part is what sort of twist the author puts on the particular legend. Soulless delivers on that, with an interesting twist of being set in Victorian England in a world where the Vamps and Were's are known and even mostly accepted in society and in this case there is an interesting twist... You have the rare supernatural (who only survive the transition if they have an excess of soul), the common normal (normal amount of soul), and the ultra-rare preternatural (no soul).

    Alexia Tarabotti is soulless, and her mere touch completely dampens the supernaturals ability (i.e. a vampire could walk in the day if holding on to her). A spinster who has been "put on the shelf" (at the old age of 25!) and barely tolerates the upper class world that she lives in (choosing to focus on things such as science and current events) she seems to find herself embroiled in supernatural machinations. She is friends with a foppish vampire and interacts with the supernatural regulatory agency (run in this case by an alpha were and his beta) on a regular basis.

    Everything is fine until a vampire, badly dressed and not part of the local (Westminster) hive, decides that she is a viable snack. What follows is a great romp where we learn more of the underlying society, about the great plot she has stumbled onto and a fair amount of romance (at least by Victorian standards). Very satisfying book that is well written with strong identifiable characters, great dialog and a plot that moves steadily along.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    w. kelsch lakeside, ca United States 10-06-12
    w. kelsch lakeside, ca United States 10-06-12 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    73
    9
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    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Performance
    Story
    "Story could use less clothing, more steampunk"
    What made the experience of listening to Soulless the most enjoyable?

    the reader for sure. I have listened to a lot of books, and Emily is by far the best reader i have ever heard.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It's sassy sort of feel. again the writer brings that out in the story as well.


    Have you listened to any of Emily Gray’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Emily is by far my favorite reader. I first heard her read in real men of genius, and her reading was the only thing keeping me going. this book has a better story, and so it made it that much better


    Any additional comments?

    this book could have been about ten times better with a little less talk about the clothing everyone was wearing and a bit more of the steampunk. it seemed as though she went into detail about the elaborate clothes in every scene. i would say about one fifth of the book talks about what people are wearing which got a bit too much later in the book. more story less clothes.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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