Deja Dei's Reviews > The Girl in the Steel Corset

The Girl in the Steel Corset by Kady Cross
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Feb 04, 12


Looks like I'm in the minority here, but I had some problems with this book that made it hard for me to enjoy. The basic premise is that a group of super-powered teenagers solve crimes with their special abilities and a host of anachronistic (even for steampunk) gadgets. They are lead by Griffin King, who is also on a personal mission to avenge his murdered parents.

The biggest issue I had with this book is the predictability of the plot. I easily had the whole crime, the villain, his intents and methods figured out a little over halfway through, which made the second part pretty tedious. Also, I found it frustrating that these young geniuses with practically unlimited resources took so long to solve the mystery when it was SO OBVIOUS.

I also didn't really like the characters. Finley Jayne, the protagonist I guess, is a blatant Jekyll and Hyde rip-off. She struggles with her condition until, when Griffin decides to cure her, he does it so easily that I wondered why he needed to wait. The ease of the cure reduces it to a non-issue. Griffin himself is a Duke, and while he claims not to abuse his status, he doesn't hesitate to do just that when faced with any adversity. He's very condescending to Finley, at one point offering her a "biscuit" if she'll be a "good girl." Am I alone in thinking this is how one speaks to a dog? Another of the gang, Sam, is so painfully emo as to be completely annoying. He spends most of his time brooding because his friends used mechanical parts to save his life, which he resents, or being pissy because Finley intruded on his bromance with Griff. Emily, the sixteen year old mechanical genius, is an okay character, if you can accept her knowledge and accomplishments at that tender age. Unfortunately, the description of her "ropey red hair" is repeated every time she appears, sometimes several times within a single scene. By the tenth time, I wanted to scream, "Ropey red hair, I KNOW!" Jack Dandy, a tall and dark crime lord, was the only character I really found intriguing. Unfortunately, he made only a handful of appearances, none of which really impacted the plot.

To top it all off, the text is full of mechanical errors like sentence fragments, comma splices, and words erroneously in quotations. These are amateurish mistakes that distracted me and should have been edited out. I hold YA novels to the same standard as adult novels, and while this had potential, Harry Potter it ain't.
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