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Heartless (Parasol Protectorate, #4)
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(Parasol Protectorate #4)

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  32,597 ratings  ·  2,485 reviews
Lady Alexia Maccon, soulless, is at it again, only this time the trouble is not her fault. When a mad ghost threatens the queen, Alexia is on the case, following a trail that leads her deep into her husband's past. Top that off with a sister who has joined the suffragette movement (shocking!), Madame Lefoux's latest mechanical invention, and a plague of zombie porcupines a ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 400 pages
Published July 1st 2011 by Orbit
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Average rating 4.05  · 
Rating details
 ·  32,597 ratings  ·  2,485 reviews

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Dec 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book almost as much as the first. 😍 The adventure and detective work and flirty banter and drama. It was highly entertaining. 👍 One more to go.
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
I just love these books and the audio narration by Emily Gray is spot on!

And the baby!!!! 😃💕🌸

Mel 🖤🐶🐺🐾
Well, the shine has definitely worn off a bit for me, but I do always love a pregnant heroine. I have this little fantasy: two ruffians chase a woman into a dark alley, and just as they are about to attack, she flashes her stretch-marked, saggy belly at them. Their faces both register shock and fear, as they realize that she’s a complete bad-ass. Then they run away in terror. I wish that pregnancy scars were revered like battle scars.

Or you know, that I could wear a bikini and not feel self-cons
Jul 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*** 4.75 ***

An absolute delight! I love everything about this series, but the melody of the language and turn of phrase, as over the top as they are, are definitely my favorite part of this wonderous world! Victorian England with ghosts, vampires and werewolves is a place I would love to visit, but as a guest to Lord Akeldama only, because he is a man after my own heart and he would be a lot of fun to hang out with. 🤩🤩🤩

"...“Good evening, Lady Maccon.” The vampire tipped his top hat with one h
Sep 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Okay we are back in business. I did not really like #3 but this one is much better!

It seems the author has changed her mind about Connall and he has reverted to being sympathetic and kind. In the last book I think I described him as an oaf. Currently my favourite characters are Floote, Lyall and Lord Akeldama who provides most of the humour. I enjoyed seeing Alexia dealing with her silly sister too.

For most of the book Alexia is clomping around like someone carrying triplets instead of the one
ᴥ Irena ᴥ
I don't know what to think about this book. It's all over the place: the plot, the characters, the relationships.

There were a couple of times I hated what is happening. At one point of the story (view spoiler) Alexia does something so stupid that later when other characters praised her for her ability to 'sort' things out, I couldn't buy it. The sorting part of the praise was undeserved.

Her pregnancy is depicted in the most annoying way possible. Alexia hobbles t
Look, if you've made it to book four of this series, you know what you're in for. Vast quantities of absurd silliness. Lots of naked werewolves (played comedically, of course). Foppish vampires. Alexia being no nonsense and getting herself into all sorts of trouble. A supernatural threat that's not really a threat, but mostly just an excuse for us to hang out with these characters for four hundred pages. The Parasol Protectorate is not plot heavy. These are hang-out books, and if you happen to l ...more
Here's what I liked about this book:

1) Finding out about Professor Lyall's past. It makes him a much more interesting character, not that he wasn't one of my favorites before.
2) The refreshing aspect of having an eight-months-pregnant heroine.

Here's what I didn't like:

Every single decision made by these characters that I used to like. For example:
(view spoiler)
Apr 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Initial Impressions:
I 100% adored this and I will write a full review of it tomorrow (it's late here). I am going onto book 5 asap and just have to say this was by far the best in the series to date and I loved it!!!!

Full Review:
Okay so I finished up this book and instantly went on to book 5. That to me is the sign of a very very good book because I like to plan out which books I shall read when, and if a book or series is good enough to make me deviate from that plan then it must be pretty amaz
Sep 05, 2011 rated it really liked it
Series Review:

Gail Carriger is the most unique author I've ever come across. Her style is truly unparalleled in all of Fictiondom. She has immense talent for turning even the most mundane of things into the epitome of sophistication. If it wasn't for her writing, I doubt I would ever enjoy these books.

The Parasol Protectorate has the most original cast of characters ever. None of the characters in this series even remotely resemble any other characters out there, except for maybe Lord Maccon. A
I loved, loved, loved this one! (Can you tell I really liked loved this one!haha!)My favorite in this series so far. Everybody and their mother needs a Floote by their side. And Lyall, my poor Lyall(I seemed to be repeating myself), his backstory brought me to tears. Mrs. Carriger, if you have any sympathy for the condition of my state of mind and the welfare of my kindle, please, please, please give Felicity a very slow and painful death!!!
Lauren Stoolfire
I think Heartless might be the best of the series so far. I especially liked that the romance has taken a little bit more of a back seat here since we get a little more adventure than before. Genevieve continues to be one of my favorites, and now I'm really feeling for Biffy's predicament. Plus, I think I'm really going to like Prudence. ...more
Aug 24, 2011 rated it really liked it
This was the first of the Parasol Protectorate books I read in paper; the others were all audio, where I loved the narration by Emily Gray. Reading it myself meant doing all Emily's voices in my head which proved a bit exhausting, but well worth it. The ongoing soap opera of Alexia Maccon and company in Carriger's Urban Fantasy/Steampunk 1870's London is always a delight. ...more
Feb 02, 2011 rated it really liked it

A pregnant Alexia waddling with her parasol through London like Sherlock Holmes is freakin hilarious.

Major wow twist of a cliffhanger that has me dying to read the fifth and final book.

Conall was the cuddliest and very caring about Alexia.

Total win of a book.
Jan 18, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
Reread in February 2021:

This is the first book in this series I actually enjoyed *less* upon rereading. I still think this is a solid book, with a lot happening. The world continues to be expanded upon and I'm interested to see where our characters go next.

But one thing that became glaringly obvious upon my reread is that this series is sorely lacking in genuine, heartfelt moments between characters. Even when the plot and the character's sentiments would seem to call for one. The ones that do e
Gloria Mundi
OK, so much as I love the characters, I have to admit I was a teensy bit bored throughout most of this book.

Alexia is very heavily pregnant in this latest instalment but she does not let the infant inconvenience get in the way of her usual antics, investigating a warning by a nearly demented ghost that an attemt on the Queen's life is being planned. Alexia and Connall are completely reconciled with barely a mention of his inexcusable (in my view) behaviour in the previous book, the vampires are
Sep 16, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, vampires
Heartless is still pretty fun, but the humour of these books is getting a little tired. For one thing, it relies on apocryphal stuff about the period (no, table legs were not considered indecent) and silly humour. And a lot of the humour in this book is basically “haha, Alexia is pregnant and huge, hahahaha”. I get that it’s a bit difficult to have Alexia up to her usual tricks without some glossing over of the fact that she’s eight months pregnant here, but yeesh, stop hanging lampshades on it, ...more
Oct 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Well, my little plum pastries, what larks we have had!

This book was possibly my favorite of the series so far, having featured copious amounts of Lord Akeldama, Biffy, Alexia having her sensibilities offended, and a riproaring good mystery to boot!

And not just the one mystery, my fluffy ducklings, but several mysteries are unraveled concerning Alexia's late father, Professor Lyall's past (and frankly, I could not get enough of Lord Akeldama calling him Dolly), and what to do with poor Biffy.

Jul 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
The entire series is consistently good. In my humble opinion underrated.
Penny Watson
Sep 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Observations about Heartless by Gail Carriger.....

1.) The cover is wack. The models on Soulless, Changeless, and Blameless looked like they could kick your butt, admonish your improper behavior and have a spot of tea all without missing a beat. The woman on the cover of Heartless looks like she'll burst into tears if you look at her funny. Wack.

2.) The humor is spot-on--Alexia waddling around London, thwarting would-be paranormal crimes with a massive pregnant belly barely slowing her down. The
Jul 29, 2011 rated it liked it
Steampunk octopus. Steampunk octopus! . . . Steampunk octopus?

I dunno, if you’re gonna give me a steampunk octopus rampaging across Victorian London and battling werewolves, it’s gotta be with more conviction than that.

This series is like waxed fruit: it’s decorative, it’s pretty, it suits only very particular esthetics. And you really, really don’t want to do anything other than look at it once in a while and go, “yeah. Wax fruit.”

. . . Pretty fun, though.
Aug 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing

Finally finished this book! Thank you school for making it difficult for me to finish anything fun... ;)

Oh, my... Ohmyohmyohmy. I loved this book. Dare I say that it was more fun to read than a couple of the previous books in the series? Yes I dare.

Further reflection to come once I figure out what I'm going to say... :D
Ashley Marie
This one gets a solid four stars, perhaps even leaning toward 4.5

Splendidly woven, and everything seemed to come together so well in the end. Felicity drove me up the wall, Mme Lefoux remains delightfully ambiguous, and Alexia kicks so much ass. Floote was also a huge stand-out in this one, I was hoping he would get his moment eventually; he and Lyall are my favorites.
Jul 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is my favourite book out of the series to date. Absolutely awesome in every way. Off to read Timeless. A better RTC.
CJ - It's only a Paper Moon

I don't know exactly what to write here. I know that overall I enjoyed the book well enough to rate it a Goodreads three. I know that I'm excited to find out what happens next in the world of the Tarrabotti/Maccon's. I'm curious what will happen to Biffy and Akeldama and hell, even Felicity is interesting enough to follow.


There was something missing from this book. Some spark, some thing that I can't put my finger on. I was confused during this book, which never happens in Carriger's
Jan 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
I've missed them all so much!
I love all the characters! They are so unique and well characterized that they are amazing! And Carriger's writing is humorous and original and quite quirky. I loved it!
It's a book full of revelations and full of events, too. And it make me smile on more than one occasion.
Alexia is quite peculiar but awsome! And Floote is simply the best!

Mi erano mancati veramente tantissimo tutti quanti! E lo stile dell'autrice! Come ho fatto ad aspettare tanto prima di decidermi a
Maria V. Snyder
Dec 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I've been listening to all the Parasol Protectorate books by Gail Carriger and they're just plain fun. The reader is perfect and she makes me laugh out loud while I'm driving. I love the characters and the setting and Heartless was another great installment in the series. I'm really hoping for more books! ...more

I enjoyed this book but not as much as books 1-3. Not enough action and the mystery seemed unnecessary. I still love the characters and can't wait to see how the series ends.
Ivy Deluca
Mar 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars

My review of the first book applies to the series as a whole. The thoughts below are specific to Heartless.


The Good
Conall and Alexia’s romance is back on track and continues to be one of my favorite things about this series. They bicker throughout, but the affection is deep and comes through in every scene. Ms. Carriger still has a few plot twists left in her reticule and yes I continue to enjoy those twists and how they will impact the overall s
4.5 Stars... Lady Maccon is on the case when she is contacted by a spectral being relaying a message of impending death for the Queen... Lady Maccon must delve into the past in order to reveal the truth and unknowingly uncovers a deep betrayal... With ghosts, vampires, and werewolves on the loose, not to mention being eight months pregnant, nothing is easy, but Lady Maccon waddles with dignity, grace, and of course manners above all else... With her parasol in hand and her wits about her she see ...more
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Gail Carriger writes comedies of manners mixed with paranormal romance (and the sexy San Andreas Shifter series as G L Carriger). Her books include the Parasol Protectorate and the Finishing School series. She is published in many languages and has over a dozen NYT bestsellers. She was once an archaeologist and is fond of shoes, octopuses, and tea. Join the Chirrup for sneak peaks of upcoming gigg ...more

Other books in the series

Parasol Protectorate (5 books)
  • Soulless (Parasol Protectorate, #1)
  • Changeless (Parasol Protectorate, #2)
  • Blameless (Parasol Protectorate, #3)
  • Timeless (Parasol Protectorate, #5)

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