Author: Bec McMaster
Book: Kiss of Steel (London Steampunk #1)
Published: September 2012
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Happy New Year, 2018!!!
Honoria Todd has found shelter in the dreaded Whitechapel district of London. Her sister Lena and brother Charles are safe from the man who murdered her father. Her father had been working on a cure for the blood-craving. Now Charles is infected, and Honoria is trying to get the money to help him.
Blade is known as the master of the rookeries. He is faster and stronger than a mortal man—nearly immortal. He was infected by the blood-craving long ago. Since then he has gone toe-to-toe with the upper crust, called the Echelon. Since accidentally killing his sister due to the blood-craving, he has had to keep himself under control. Honoria turns his world upside down, testing his tenuous control. However, she is stubborn and may be just what he needs.
Bec McMaster’s book seems to be steampunk on the edges. It focuses more on a fantasy romance with vampires and werewolves. Honoria Todd was born in the upper middle class, but not a “Blue Blood”, nobility infected with the blood-craving. (It seems the fashionable thing to do.) However, Blade is someone who was infected by Vickers, tormented, then left to kill his sister in his need. This has always haunted Blade. Vickers was funding Honoria’s father’s research for a cure for the blood-craving. When her father disappeared, Vickers put a price on her head and the heads of her sister and brother.
The book is a little slow in places, focusing more on the paranormal romance end of the story. So the adventure elements of the story give way to the interpersonal elements of it. Blade and Honoria are attracted to each other. Each has to win the other’s trust. Both are stubborn, making the relationship exciting. The end result isn’t exactly a page turner but interesting. I’m interested in seeing how the rest of the series plays out.