Katie(babs)'s Reviews > Changeless

Changeless by Gail Carriger
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Mar 11, 10

it was amazing
Read from March 05 to 09, 2010

I’ve just finished a book where I didn’t want to read too fast, but couldn’t stop myself even if I wanted to. There are not many books I can think of that have engaged all my senses, where I’m wrapped up in the story and overall love and hard work put into the words, where I was utterly lost in the world the author has created.

Such a book that has evoking such strong feelings is Gail Carriger’s Changeless, the second book in her Parasol Protectorate featuring Alexia Maccon, The Lady Woolsey. Alexia is a very unique individual who has been born without a soul and with one touch can cause the prenaturals, the accepted werewolves and vampires, to become mortal. Alexia is somewhat of an outcast due to her half Italian heritage as well as the way she presents herself. Alexia is a proper Victorian lady to her very core, but one who doesn’t give a fig about fashion, is very outspoken and finds absolute joy in food.

The former twenty-six year old spinster is the newly married wife of three months to Lord Conall Maccon, the Woolsey Alpha werewolf. When Alexia and Conall first met, they could barely stand to be in the same room with one another. But after coming to a mutual respect, where Alexia saved Conall’s life, defeated a crazed scientist and shared a deep abiding passion where Conall could barely keep his hands and his kisses to himself, they married. The Maccons’ marriage is an interesting one to say the least. Every time Alexia touches Conall, he loses his werewolf abilities and becomes human for as long as Alexia touches him. She can cause him to age if they’re not careful. But Conall loves putting his hands on his new bride, so much so that almost every night and a few times during the day she must, “sacrifice herself on the altar of wifely duty” as she thinks of it. But Alexia doesn’t lie back and think of England. She enjoys those intimacies, perhaps even more so than Conall does.

British society is unaware what Alexia is, as well as her new role as Queen Victoria’s muhjah and a member of The Shadow Council that administers supernatural interaction with the crown. Conall works for the Bureau of Unnatural Registry (BUR) and handles the enforcement end. Alexia is accustomed to her new station in life, but she’s beyond frustrated especially with Conall’s wolf pack camped out on her front lawn, her husband running around at all hours of the night, and dealing with her flighty best friend, the newly engaged Ivy Hisselpenny who doesn’t have any fashion sense, especially with those horrendous hats she wears. If it’s not bad enough she must witness Conall’s valet and chief claviger, Tunstell, making puppy dog eyes at Ivy, and visa-versa, as well as her spoiled unmarried sister, Felicity who will be staying for an extended visit.

Something is afoot in the London, where the supernatural community is being infected by normality and turning into mortals. At first Alexia is blamed, but something more sinister is at play; perhaps a type of weapon created by someone who has much to gain by all of this. When the Alpha werewolf of the Kingair Pack of Scotland is murdered, Conall leaves without warning and travels there to place some type of order. Before Conall left, he had a special type of parasol created for Alexia by Madame Lefoux, a French inventor-cum-milliner who dresses like a man, and is full of winks and dimples. Alexia finds something a bit off with the Madame, especially with the way she looks at and touches her. But after taking her new parasol, Alexia thinks that’s the last time she will see the Madame of the lovely dimples.

Alexia is more than peeved that her husband would leave without a word and decides to join him in Scotland. Alexia is less than thrilled with her entourage that includes her French maid, the snappish Felicity, Ivy, and Tunstell as their male escort. Coincidentally, Madame Lefoux ends up ton the same dirigible Alexia is on. After Alexia is attacked and pushed, almost falling to her death from the dirigible by an unknown assailant, she arrives safely in Scotland and met by her wayward husband. Now she has to deal with Sidheag Maccon, the three time’s great human granddaughter of Conall, a love triangle between Felicity, Tunstell and Ivy, and Egyptian mummies that may be the cause of the humanization of the prenaturals. As you can see, there’s never a dull moment for Alexia!

If you were a fan of Soulless, you will find Changeless just as engaging. This book had me hooked from the first page and didn’t let up. Everything about Changeless is so original and wonderfully slapstick. The true joy in reading is how Alexia handles the various situations thrown her way. The wonderful thing I love about Alexia is how analytical she is and she truly doesn’t care what people think about her. Whether it’s her sister insulting her looks or her figure, or her husband who acts so very annoyed with his darling wife, but really isn’t, Alexia shrugs it all off.

One important thing I noticed underneath all the action and drama is that being an eccentric and an oddball is something to be proud of. This is shown most of all with Alexia, but also with two other female characters. Ivy is absolutely adorable, although she comes across as a loveable twit. The same goes with Madam Lefoux, who is very much a mystery and holds her head high when it comes to her fashion sense and sexuality. (I would love to see Lefoux have her own spin-off)

Alexia brings such life to every page. You can’t help but want to pat her head whenever she has to take control of the dealings with her family members and friends. She is so uncomfortable with the more personal side of things and this is especially shown with her relationship with Conall. These two snipe and insult each other, but you can see the love and devotion they have with each look, smile and touch. And although their passion is somewhat restrained, it was still just enough to get a good sense of how these two have come to care for one another.

There is a big, “oh no she didn’t!” shock that had me gasping out loud. This is the jaw dropping, doozy of an ending no one will see coming. I sure didn’t. Readers will be buzzing in such away where a few will be disgruntled and perhaps annoyed, while others will be dying for the third book to see how things are resolved.

Changeless was everything and more, where I didn’t want it to end. I laughed more times than I could count and wanted to go back and re-read all over again. Just as Alexia worships at the altar of wifely duty, I worship at the altar of Gail Carriger and her amazing storytelling skills.
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Reading Progress

03/06/2010 page 150
40.11% "I am LOVING this book so, so much."

Comments (showing 1-9 of 9) (9 new)

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message 1: by Melissa (new) - added it

Melissa Lucky you got to read it early.

Katie(babs) Melissa wrote: "Lucky you got to read it early."

I want to have babies with this book, it's that good.

message 3: by Melissa (new) - added it

Melissa Katie(babs) wrote: "Melissa wrote: "Lucky you got to read it early."

I want to have babies with this book, it's that good."

Awesome ^^

message 4: by Rane (last edited Mar 11, 2010 02:57PM) (new) - added it

Rane Awesome Review Katie!
Really looking forward to getting a copy now more then ever! But I think Blameless blurb ruined the cliffhanger ending to Changeless >_<

Katie(babs) Rane wrote: "Awesome Review Katie!
Reallying looking forward to getting a copy now more then ever! But I think Blameless blurb ruined the cliffhanger ending to Changeless >_<"

I think Orbit should have waiting a month or so after Changeless's release to post the blurb for Blameless. If you read the blurb, the ending won't shock you as much as it should.

message 6: by Melissa (new) - added it

Melissa Awesome review! I've actually haven't gotten around to reading the first one, but it's on myself and next on the list. I have never been more excited for a book to come out before i even read the first one. lol

Peace Love and Reviews Lucky! you got an early release copy right? I will not read your review just yet. Had to ask you first? Is there any spoilers?

Katie(babs) PeaceloveandPat wrote: "Lucky! you got an early release copy right? I will not read your review just yet. Had to ask you first? Is there any spoilers?"

What type of spoilers are you looking for?

message 9: by Kelly (new)

Kelly Great review. I so need to read these!

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