Janice's Reviews > The Gaslight Dogs

The Gaslight Dogs by Karin Lowachee
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's review
Jul 31, 2011

it was ok
bookshelves: z-read-in-2011, canadian-connection, love-the-cover, steam-punk
Read from August 18 to 28, 2011

I chose this book for a challenge on the steampunk genre. It was listed on the listopia "Best Steampunk Books". From what I understand of steampunk, this did not meet the criteria.

The setting was a meld of 20th century Inuit life with Victorian underground and the wild west according to the author. There was a large paranormal element in that the story centered around people who were able to shapeshift into their spirit animal. But there was no technology, unless you count the gaslights that lined the streets of the city.

It took me a bit to get past the strangeness of the names. It would have been nice to have a glossary that would identified the structure of the months and days of the weeks. I had no frame of reference when a week day was named. Was that one day, two days, three days away?

Once I got past that, I was able to focus on the story. It started out quite well with the POV of Sjenn. I was drawn into her story and eager to learn about her spirit animal.

The story switched to the POV of Captain Jarrett. At first, his story was quite interesting as well. But then it dragged on, switching between the two POV's. It seemed to me there were some inconsistencies. At one point, Sjenn's "Dog" (her spirit animal) had wandered with Jarrett's. She did not know what had transpired during that time. Yet, later in the book, she had total recall when her Dog was free. There was no explanation of the significance of the Dog's bite. I began to weary of the story.

I wish the author had stuck with Sjenn's POV, and had fleshed out the significance of the spirit world. She could have treated the Dog as a character in the story, perhaps even switched between Sjenn's point of view and the Dog's. I finished the book feeling quite disastified. It had possibilities that didn't come to fruition.
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl Helpful review - I clearly have a sense of the book, and feel confident that I don't need to read it, despite the fact that it looks intriguing. Thanks!

Janice It's like the saying - looks can be deceiving. :)

message 3: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl :)

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