My rating: 3 of 5 stars
The Book: Steam and Sorcery by Cindy Spencer Pape
The Particulars: Steampunk, Carina Press, available as e-book
Why was it in my TBR? I got this one from Netgalley. The cover caught my attention
Sir Merrick Hadrian hunts monsters, both human and supernatural. A Knight of the Order of the Round Table, his use of magick and the technologies of steam power have made him both respected and feared. But his considerable skills are useless in the face of his greatest challenge, guardianship of five unusual children. At a loss, Merrick enlists the aid of a governess. Miss Caroline Bristol is reluctant to work for a bachelor but she needs a position, and these former street children touch her heart. While she tends to break any mechanical device she touches, it never occurs to her that she might be something more than human. All she knows is that Merrick is the most dangerously attractive man she’s ever met—and out of reach for a mere governess. When conspiracy threatens to blur the distinction between humans and monsters, Caroline and Merrick must join forces, and the fate of humanity hinges upon their combined skills of steam and sorcery…
I must admit, I am weak for romance novels were a strong woman meets a man with orphaned children. Toss in steampunk and magic, and I has too read it. This was one of the first ARCs I requested from NetGalley. And I am glad I did. Cindy Spencer Pape have created a fascinating world, that houses magic, tech and monsters. I liked that the world was nuanced, and that she didn’t hesitate to show the uglier sides. The uglier sides have affected the characters, and that also affect the plot. The steampunk elements were light, but important to the plot.
I fell in love with the characters. All of them, even Edwin Berry. The children were depicted as children and not mini adults. I liked the way Caroline handled them. But I especially liked the growing romance between Merrick and Caroline. Both of them are aware of their attraction, but determined to fight it.
The plot was fast paced, and sucked me in. The combination of plot, world and characters was good enough to make me ignore some of the less than subtle hints. But, it is a well written story, in a fascinating world. I am looking forward to the next book in the Series.