Sunday, March 15, 2015

*Steampunk Book Review* Of Silk and Steam by Bec McMaster

Series: London Steampunk # 5
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Released: March 3, 2015
Source: NetGalley
Format: E-book, 416 pages
Genre: Steampunk, Historical, Romance

*Book Blurb*

When her beloved father was assassinated, Lady Aramina swore revenge. The man responsible is well beyond her grasp, but his dangerously seductive heir, Leo Barrons, is fair game. When Mina obtains evidence proving that Leo is illegitimate, she has the means to destroy both the killer and his son, a man who troubles her heart and tempts her body.   A woman of mystery, Mina's long driven Leo crazy with glimpses of a fiery passion that lurks beneath her icy veneer. He knows she's hiding something, and he's determined to unravel her layer by silken layer. He just doesn't expect the beautiful liar to be the key to overthrowing the corrupt prince consort… or to saving his own carefully walled-off heart.

There are many reasons YOU should be reading the London Steampunk series. McMaster can write, her characters are intense, the storylines are enjoyable, and there is plenty of hot, sexy, romance that will leave you breathless. There is betrayal, shocking secrets revealed, and an intensity that's just insane. London Steampunk is similar to the Darkest London series by Kristen Callihan. Both series are set in the late 19th Century. Both series are steampunk driven, but not overly done. And, both writers love to tease, tempt, and push your buttons to your breaking points.

Readers should know that I do not recommend that you jump into Silk without having previous knowledge of the past FOUR books. If you jump into SILK without knowing the characters, or the world that McMaster's has created, or the underlying rebellion that has been been rising up for some time now, you will be utterly confused and not enjoy the story as much as those who have fallen for McMaster's cast of characters from the start.

Even though Silk is Leo Barrons and Lady Aramina Duvall's story, McMaster like Callihan, doesn't let her characters "retire" from further story participation. As with the previous FOUR novels, McMaster alternatives narratives between Leo and Mina, while also using everyone from Blade & Honoria, Lena & Will, Rosalind & Lynch, Garrett & Lady Peregrine (Perry), Rip & Esme.

Silk starts years before we met Honoria and Blade (1872). It is the first time that Leo saw Mina, and quickly fell in love with her. As for Mina, she has been trying hard to avenge her fathers death that catapulted Mina into becoming one of the rare female Blue Bloods in London. This means finding a way of destroying Leo since he's the Duke of Caine's heir. Mina is a really fun character to read about. She's powerful, goal orientated, refuses to be bogged down by any man, and tries really hard to thwart Leo's intentions that have spread over 8 years.

I do find it interesting that TWO characters like Leo and Mina can be working for the same goal; the removal of the Prince Consort, and yet not know about their plans until now. Leo has Blade, Lynch, Rosalind, and the others on his side, while Mina has been quietly putting together her own plans, using her own resources, and people to overthrow the Prince including the Humanist First organization where we met Rosalind Lynch.

Leo is a character that is NOT new to series regulars. He is Honoria, Lena, and Charlie's half brother. He, like Mina, are members of the Council of Dukes where they have secretly put their own plans in action. I appreciated that McMaster decided to unveil who Mina really is, and what's she been up to. As one of the rare Blue Bloods, we really haven't been told how her transformation happened, or if she is an ally to the Prince or not. I even liked the relationship between Mina and Queen Alexandra.

This story is what happens when two powerful personalities collide. There is no stopping what will happen next. Between them, there is fiery intensity, hot, sweaty sex, and passion that is on par with other couples already introduced. I only have one tiny comment to make. I'm not a HUGE romance lover, but I do enjoy this series. I don't however, like when there are numerous sex scenes when the world is on fire, and the action stalls so they can get their kink on.

I did like the little surprise that arrived during the story, while cried after McMaster killed off a little innocent cat that didn't do anything to anybody. One last thing, when there is a war going on, you expect casualties on a massive scale. You have Humans, Mechs, and Blue Bloods all vying for a slice of the pie. Yet, McMaster's took the vanilla way out by not killing any of the important characters.

Of Silk and Steam is the FIFTH installment in the London Steampunk series by Bec McMaster, but not the last book in the series. McMaster explained that Steam closes out one story arc that started with Kiss of Steel, and featured a really despicable villain. McMaster plans on moving ahead with something else in the next book, with characters readers have already met in one fashion or the other. I'm guessing Charlie and Lark, but we shall see if I am right.

*I received this book for free from (Sourcebooks Casablanca ) via (NetGalley) in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!! This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.**

Other Books in Series:


  1. McMaster said the books can be read as standalone... I disagree although I guess one can. They'll just miss the awesomeness of the previous books

    1. Exactly! How would one understand who the characters are, if they didn't read the previous books?