colleen the convivial curmudgeon's Reviews > Changeless

Changeless by Gail Carriger
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's review
Nov 18, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: steampunk, romantic, historical-fantasy, whodunit-supernatural
Read from November 07 to 09, 2010 — I own a copy , read count: 2


Oh dear gods, what just happened? I finished this book last night, up to the wee hours, and that ending... I was so upset! I was practically tearing up. No, it just can't be...

And angry. Oh so angry at stupid Conall. Argh!

Overall, I enjoyed this book a lot, though perhaps a little less than the first. Perhaps it's merely because the first was so novel/ I was glad, however, that Alexia Italian-ness and dark complexion were only mentioned a handful of times, and not constantly.

I liked the additional of Madame Lefoux, the interplay between the newly married couple, the ever charming Lord Akeldama and his interesting involvement in the turn of events.

Ivy and Felicity were annoying, which, granted, they are meant to be, but their comments were just too repetitive. And the bit at the end with Ivy and Tunstell was just a mite predictable.

My main complaints, I suppose, was that I never really felt any sense of urgency in solving the case. And, for the most part, Alexia again seemed to sort of stumble onto answers, until the end, anyway. The mystery part, once again, was the weaker element of the story. But the personal touches were, once again, quite enough to make up for it.

And then the ending where the floor dropped out and everything lovely fell apart. All last night I was tossing and turning, waking up with reprimands and incriminations in my mind. Oh dear, oh dear - when is the next book out?

(Btw, everyone should read Michelle's review because it captures all my thoughts and does a much better job of it.


Finished my reread. Still mad at the ending, even though I knew it was coming.

I still generally liked it. I thought the part on the dirigible seemed a bit slow going, but I thought it picked up once they landed and the stuff between Conall and Alexia picked up again, but then it got a bit draggy figuring out the mystery again.

My biggest impression from the second read was how over-the-top annoying Ivy is in this one. Getting in the way, being entirely dense, and insisting Alexia didn't marry for love, when she was there for the first book. It just seemed out-of-character and was more vexing than amusing.

Weakrer than the first, but still enjoyable.
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Reading Progress

04/09/2010 page 58
11/07/2010 page 0
0.0% "Starting a re-read"
11/09/2010 page 328
88.0% "I hadn't forgotten how annoying Ivy sometimes is in this second book."
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Comments (showing 1-8 of 8) (8 new)

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Donna I agree with you for the most part, but I rated this one pretty harshly because of that ending. It just taints the whole thing for me. All the cutesy couple stuff in the whole book, just ruined.

I'm not even sure if I can go back and enjoy the first book again.

I have no idea how Conall could possibly do anything to redeem himself. And if Alexia spends time trying to convince him and excusing his bullshit, I think I'll lose a lot of respect for her too.

colleen the convivial curmudgeon I couldn't rate it that much lower because of the ending because I did like the rest of it... and also because, for me, it was kind of a hook. Oh, don't get me wrong, I'm so pissed at Conall, and I agree that I would be annoyed if Alexia makes excuses for him, but I am expecting a reunion and reconciliation...

At least there freaking well better be, and it better be believable and not stupid, damnit!

Donna It's pretty rare that I rate down a whole book for one aspect of it, but I just felt that strongly about Conall's reaction. He wasn't willing to give the person he supposedly loves the benefit of the doubt, even for a few moments. That lack of trust just broke my perception of their relationship.

And aren't the werewolves always going on about how sensitive their noses are? If she was messing around, shouldn't he have been able to smell some human's hands on her?

I'm expecting a reconciliation as well, and I'll do my best to give it a chance. I just don't see how anything he does could be enough to justify his behavior. Maybe he can eventually worm his way back into rational Alexia's good graces. But I don't see how he'll get back into mine, which is about as important.

message 4: by colleen the convivial curmudgeon (last edited Apr 23, 2010 03:46PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

colleen the convivial curmudgeon Donna wrote: "And aren't the werewolves always going on about how sensitive their noses are? If she was messing around, shouldn't he have been able to smell some human's hands on her?"

You know, this was one of my major issues, too. That was one of the first things I said to my b/f, who wondered why I was near tears when finishing this book.

Not only that, but would she be as open with him if she were having an affair? And what would lead a woman of high moral virtue, who was chaste her whole life, to suddenly decide to have an affair - while she was clearly happily in love with her husband?

And I was also upset about the whole line about Alexia saying about how important loyalty was to Conall, and that's why he would take it so badly, and I sat there screaming "what about loyalty to her?! How dare he!?"

So I'm with you there, and he will have to do a lot to regain my trust and my affection as well. I suppose I'm trusting Ms. Carriger to know where she's going with this. I would hate for this to go from one of my most enjoyed series to one reviled so quickly... and so, in this particular case, my romanticism trumps my cynicism... and I hope...

Donna blackrose wrote: "And I was also upset about the whole line about Alexia saying about how important loyalty was to Conall, and that's why he would take it so badly, and I sat there screaming "what about loyalty to her?! How dare he!?" "

That's a really good point. They've been mentioning for two books now how rare her soulless condition is and how little is known about it, and he dismisses that as the cause with barely a thought.

If he was willing to openly stand by her, there would still have been rumors. But his overly-hasty actions are going to ruin her reputation completely, which is like a second betrayal.

This may just be the conspiracist in me, but I think there's also a chance that the situation was partially caused by someone who wanted to distract Conall from his work or his pack, or break Alexia's power as mujah. It struck me as odd that one character in the council meeting was asking after her health. He might have just noticed her condition early, but he might also have known something...

But no matter how unlikely it was, and no matter how it was made possible, I'm just not sure if I can get over Conall playing King of the Assholes. It is pretty cynical of me, but I've been disappointed in several of the series I enjoyed in recent years. So maybe I'm overly fearful of that.

colleen the convivial curmudgeon Well, I think the next book is out in October or something... so I suppose only time will tell.

Dani You made a good point about the first book and the constant mentions of how Italian and dark Alexia was. That was the one element that marred the first book for me. I was glad that it was mostly absent in this book.

Kara I JUST finished this book tonight, and my reaction was very similar. Fun to read through your comments.

I guess (at least) that no one saw that ending coming.

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