Reviewed by Heather C
Title: Kiss of Steel
Author: Bec McMaster
Series: London Steampunk #1
Hero & Heroine: Blade & Honoria Todd
Genre: M/F Paranormal Romance; Steampunk
Length: 423 pages
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Release Date: September 2012
Available at: Amazon, Barnes and Noble & Kobo
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: When Nowhere Is Safe
Most people avoid the dreaded Whitechapel district. For Honoria Todd, it’s the last safe haven. But at what price?
Blade is known as the master of the rookeries—no one dares cross him. It’s been said he faced down the Echelon’s army single-handedly, that ever since being infected by the blood-craving he’s been quicker, stronger, and almost immortal.
When Honoria shows up at his door, his tenuous control comes close to snapping. She’s so…innocent. He doesn’t see her backbone of steel—or that she could be the very salvation he’s been seeking.
I’ve been looking for an awesome new-to-me paranormal romance series for months now and I think I finally found it!
I loved so many things about this book!
The World: AU Victorian London…think steampunk mixed with vampires and werewolves; but not your typical vampire/shifter story either! This one focuses mostly on the vampire aspects of the world. Plus, you have the dark, despairing lives in Whitechapel suffering under the thumbs of the rich aristocrats, or in this case, the blue bloods of the Echelon.
The Hero/Heroine: I LOVED both Blade and Honoria so much! After the loss of their father, Honoria has been trying to support and protect her younger siblings Lena and Charlie; until she gets desperate and resorts to making a deal with the Devil of Whitechapel himself, Blade…the boogeyman that parents use to scare their little children into behaving. So, of course Honoria has her pride and doesn’t easily accept her contract with Blade, and Blade just wants to get into her skirts…at first. I think the parts I loved most about these two was all the bickering and banter between them. Honoria was never afraid to stand up to him…and even when she defied him, it just made Blade want her even more. And you know how arguments and defiance make for good sexual tension…and good makeup sex! So yeah, I was cheering for these two from page one.
The secondary characters: I’m not going to name names, but there are so many characters here I want to see their HEA!
The mystery: I will just say that the foreshadowing was very well done! I was able to suspect one of the biggest “AH HA” moments, but there were plenty more surprises along the way.
The scientific/medical plot: As a nurse, I was really into the blood-craving infection and the cure versus vaccine plot line. I was so excited that I figured out the solution!! Yep, it made perfect sense to me.
The steampunk touches: Although the steampunk doesn’t prominently stand out in this novel…in my opinion, there are still plenty of undertones involving the mechanical parts: like one character’s mechanical arm and the clockwork and toys. Plus, some of the modes of travel. I am hoping to see bit more steampunk influences in the subsequent books.
Blade’s accent: He spoke with a heavy cockney accent and I would like to point out that it may give some readers trouble, or at least a bit to get adapted to. I, on the other hand, found it totally sexy!!!
The only thing it needed? A glossary!! I was a bit confused in the beginning because there were vampires and blue bloods and verwulfen and metaljackets. Not to mention all the positions in society like the Echelon and the Nighthawks, etc. It took me about the first quarter of the book to get that all straight in my head, then I was set.
In the end, I could not recommend this book enough!! I will definitely be reading the rest of this series.
Overall Impression: I Loved It!
*I purchased my own, personal copy of this book for review.*