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25 February 2010


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It was enjoyable candy reading for me, but I can definitely see all of your points. You're right, I think this would be better in a TV/movie medium. Maybe it was written with that in mind.


I wondered about that -- the television vibe was so strong for me.


See, I love that cover, too. Just because I know she's totally Steampunk down below and is wearing some really hefty, awesome platform boots with propellers or something.

I do want to read this still - and yours IS the first sort of "meh" review, but you're one of the people whose tastes I trust (I mean, come on: INCARCERON? I will never doubt you.), so I will put it slightly lower on my TBR since it's only partially great.

Citizen Reader

I had the same high hopes for this one and was completely bored after two chapters. The only two descriptive words that occurred to me were "PHONED IN"--meant only to cash in on the current frenzy about all things paranormal and genre-bending. It also reminded me I have to take all the millions of glowingly positive book reviews available on both blogs and library journals with a big old hunk (no longer just a grain) of salt.


Yeah, completely valid and accurate criticisms. I, however, think I read the whole thing in Julie Andrews' voice and it just cracked me up. I may have also read it (unfairly) as a spoof of Victorian literature, which added to the humor value for me. It got points for originality with the soulless aspect, paranormals that make me go "huh, interesting" are few and far between these days. I guess I stopped having high expectations for them a bit ago, so when they do something different it earns them lots of points. I hope the in next one the writing is more refined, but I worry about where the characters have left to go.


Agree with all of that. Cover art is fab. And I have no problem with authors trying to recreate the Amelia Peabody magic--the world can never have enough Amelia Peabodies--but when they fail I get pretty annoyed. In fact, I sort of hoped she wouldn't get rescued in the end. She did...I think..I actually can't remember. That's not a good sign, either.


Good take on this book. I couldn't get through the first chapter of this one. I wanted to like it and tried very hard more than once to finish that first chapter... just couldn't.


Chrissy, maybe I should have tried the Julie Andrews voice. I went with a Kate-Beckinsale-as-Flora-Post narrator, but that just made me wish I were reading Cold Comfort Farm.


Thank you, I felt exactly the same way and could not even finish the book. It reminded way too much of Amelia (down to the parasol!) and Emerson.


The cover art is apparently taken from a steampunk site (with permission). I don't have a link handy right now (of course)but did read about it at some point and it is a pretty cool likeness from the original model.

I liked the book a lot - I thought it was just flat out fun and after reading a rash of books about Iraq, Burma etc. (for a variety of reviewing duties), I can't begin to tell you how much I appreciated the novelty of it. Yes there is certainly some Amelia Peabody here - but of a sexier sort to be sure and the whole paranormal aspect is different. But it's not total sex trash like Laurell K Hamilton has become and while there is some talking to the reader, I think that will disappear in the sequels.

I also didn't read her as a weak female at all - in fact she is pretty key to the rescuing of others in the end and never faints, screams, etc which was nice to see. I thought it was a great mash-up of steampunk/romance and will buy the next one (Changeless) and see where things go. (The next cover is pretty cool looking as well.)


Ah - found the link for the Soulless cover. Check it out - very well done!


Emily P.

I am stuck trying to picture how you would put pudding in a puff, since English pudding is quite a different thing than American pudding. It ought properly to say "custard in the puff," except then you would lose the lovely alliteration.


I am so glad to know I am not alone in not really being able to read Soulless. I have tried twice. I really wanted to like it. I think the voice was more what the author thought she should have rather than an authentic character voice. It also didn't sustain...there'd be a good line or two, then along comes something trite, flat, or pretentious.

Is there anyone else kind of getting sick of paranormals?

P.S. I am glad you posted

Beth Kakuma-Depew

Thanks for the review! I mostly read Teen Paranormals, and felt bad for putting this one down after one chapter. But you were right: stock characters + weak dialoge just kill it. Also I had theological problems with the whole "souless" concept. Isn't your soul an extension of your conciousness? Maybe someone in a coma wouldn't have a soul, but a thinking, complex person? I couldn't buy it...

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