I am incredibly picky when it comes to anything "historical", and this includes steampunk. Way too often an author gets too bogged down in the minutia of the Victorian/Regency/whatever era, that the story gets lost. At least for me. I want snappy, spunky dialogue. I want action sequences (even if that action is just two characters having a moment.) Basically, stuff needs to be happening to keep my attention. I could care two figs less about the cut/type/style of their clothing/food/furniture/etc. I really don't care how well they researched the period to make sure that the amount of decolletage is proper or how the cravat is tied is accurate. I don't care. Yada, Yada. Move it along.
That is what was so awesome about this book. There was some brief descriptions of clothing, but they went more towards, okay, so she's wearing pants and an apron because she was busy creating awesome steam-powered weapons in the back of her shop. Or, he his glamour hid the fact that he was dressed as some rough lower class while at this high society event. You know, it set the scene and moved on. And there was plenty of moving on.
There were multiple fight scenes in this book, as well as stuff blowing up, and even a "car chase" that had to be read to believed. The imagery of the werewolves changing shape and the pale homunculus creatures, were brought to life in my imagination. I loved the creativity in the steam powered creations too. And the icing on the cake? The females got to kick some butt too. They weren't some delicate flowers, wilting while the males did all the work. Again, happy times for me as I love strong female characters.
To be honest, as soon as I finished this book, I went and requested the next two books in the trilogy, The Undying Legion and The Conquering Dark. They will be coming out at the ends of June and July. So no long waits for the next book to arrive. Yeah! Overall, I was simply thrilled with this book and though I waffled between a 4 and 5 star rating, I felt like I didn't fully connect with the characters yet, so 4 it is. I am hopeful the next book will earn that last star.
Thanks to Netgalley and Del Ray for the opportunity to read and review the book.