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Soulless

Narrated by: Emily Gray
Series: Parasol Protectorate, Book 1
Length: 10 hrs and 48 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (708 ratings)

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This Story Is Seductive

Publisher's Summary

Alexia Tarabotti is laboring under a great many social tribulations. First, she has no soul. Second, she's a spinster whose father is both Italian and dead. Third, she was rudely attacked by a vampire, breaking all standards of social etiquette.

Where to go from there? From bad to worse, apparently, for Alexia accidentally kills the vampire - and then the appalling Lord Maccon (loud, messy, gorgeous, and werewolf) is sent by Queen Victoria to investigate.

With unexpected vampires appearing and expected vampires disappearing, everyone seems to believe Alexia responsible. Can she figure out what is actually happening to London's high society? Will her soulless ability to negate supernatural powers prove useful or just plain embarrassing? Finally, who is the real enemy, and do they have treacle tart?

Soulless is the first book of the Parasol Protectorate series: a comedy of manners set in Victorian London, full of werewolves, vampires, dirigibles, and tea drinking.

The Parasol Protectorate

  • Soulless
  • Changeless
  • Blameless
  • Heartless
  • Timeless

For more from Gail Carriger, check out:

The Custard Protocol

  • Prudence
  • Imprudence

Finishing School (YA)

  • Etiquette & Espionage
  • Curtsies & Conspiracies
  • Waistcoats & Weaponry
  • Manners & Mutiny

©2017 Gail Carriger (P)2017 Hachette Audio

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Good fun

Rather tongue-in-cheek take-off on the vampire/werewolf Victorian scene. The world-building by the author is complete and very well thought out/through. Clever dialogue. Fans of Georgette Heyer/Lois McMasters Bujold/Elizabeth Peters can rejoice. The prose is simply sterling, as is the vocabulary choice--nary a stumble over the wrong word.

But the one thing that sends this romp over the top is the narrator: like Grover Gardner for the Vorkosigan saga and Barbara Rosenblatt for the Peabody/Emerson series, Emily Gray is absolutely perfect as ALL the characters, as well as the running commentary that sends up the alternate Victorian era. A real listening pleasure.

26 of 28 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Somewhat good for steampunky supernatural type

This book was alright. Nothing really to write home about. Definitely lost time period in the conversation and remarks at time and became way too 2000teens. Some of the slips broke spell as they say. But I started reading it because I have decided to read steampunk style books and this was at the top of someone's steampunk list. I would however, suggest anyone read the His Dark Materials series by Phillip Pullman over this one if getting into steampunk. Also, the Leviathan Triligy by Scott Westerfield, and for classics do Time Machine and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. I will be reading the rest of these parasol protectorate so we will see how it goes.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Downton Abbey just got the HBO treatment

LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVED THIS BOOK. It was very funny and written so beautifully and cleverly that I found even the exposition parts to be enjoyable. Gail did a fantastic job at world building though I would like to know if there are more supernatural creatures besides werewolves, vampires and ghosts. It is never really said if there are and there was plenty of opportunities to do so. Alexia is a very strong and relatable character who was just the right amount of awkward without it being her main appeal. Emily did a fantastic job with the performance and gave the story life and wit, I am certain that I would have enjoyed the book a bit less if I had read it and not listened to it.

Moving to book 2!

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

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reintroduction to an excellent series

I was already a fan of this series before getting the audio book. Getting to listen to it at work though, an absolute game changer and complete delight. Now while the story could easily be called a romance novel with just enough supernatural and steampunk elements sprinkled in to try to disguises what it really is, (and almost would be) Gail's discriptions, charming characters, clever dialogue and sheer rapier wit more than balance out what might've otherwise been another trashy supernatural romance book.

the narration is decent, but at times sounded a bit low energy, as if she hadn't gotten her morning coffee yet before reading.

all in all a delight for anyone who are fans of vampires, werewolves, and steampunk.

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  • E. Watson
  • Atlanta, GA United States
  • 07-06-19

Absolutely Fabulous!!

I am at a lost for words as to how to express my complete delight with this book! It was outstanding in every way. I cannot wait to continue with this series. I don’t see how anyone could find fault with the writing or the narration - both in my opinion were exceptional! I am so very glad that I found this book/series!!

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This is a great series!

I love this series. It's easy to go back to and read again and again if needed. Luckily this audiobook is also rather keepable, something that doesn't always happen even if the book is great. Ms. Gray narrates this story well, and is really easy to listen to.

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Super fun, utterly charming romp through Victorian England... with supernaturals!

Is this a serious work of literature? No. Is it absolutely entertaining and filled with vibrant characters? Yes! This tale of a sassy, soulless heroin is absolutely worth the listen.

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"La, my fluffy unicorn."

Delightful! This novel kept me hooked. I am ready to devour the next one! Now!

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uniquely awesome. reminds me of

Elizabeth Peter's Amelia Peabody series. Will be looking forward to anything else by this writer

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excellently unique

from the first chapter i was into this. perhaps its the lovely narration, and high class 19th century way of forming sentences. but i was enthralled by the whole affair. the new take on the vamp/wolf narrative was refreshing as i rarely enjoy that trope. give it a try people.