I'm still a newbie when it comes to steampunk. Sometimes the genre is obvious to me, and sometimes - like with Incarnation - I have a hard time understanding where the genre classification stems from. Incarnation is definitely Victorian, but I wasn't able to pick up on the technology that would place this as a steampunk novel. That being said, I think this is the perfect time of year to read a Victorian novel. Last year I read Ghosts by Gaslight: Stories of Steampunk and Supernatural Suspense
throughout the month of October. The gothic style of Victorian literature is very fitting to the change in the season.
If I were to classify Incarnation, I would just label it a Victorian vampire story. The main character, Lucy, is the same Lucy from Bram Stoker's Dracula. Except she's not. In Incarnation, Bram Stoker is an author for hire who penned Dracula with large deviations from the truth. Lucy tracks down Stoker on her way to tracking down the creature who turned her. The lack of true connection Incarnation had to the real story of Dracula was a disappointment for me. I'm a fan of Dracula, and the use of the Dracula characters felt like an angle at first. By the end, though, I did enjoy the references that came into play.
The beauty of Incarnation to me is the descriptions of the vampire culture in London. Lucy is not like other vampires. While my usual taste in books left me wanting to know more about the vicious and seductive vampires tucked away in London, I remained captivated by Lucy and the world Emma Cornwall created.
I recommend Incarnation to those who are fans of vampire lore and enjoy the beauty of Victorian literature.