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The Dastardly Miss Lizzie: An Electric Empire Novel Paperback – April 18, 2017
Attention Science Fiction Fans
Man vs. machine, humans vs. aliens, paranormal activities – discover the best of science fiction with these collectible books. Learn More.
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“In this third dazzlingly complex installment of the Electric Empire series, Carr expands her otherworldly historical setting impressively, and provides her two heroines with a marvelous opportunity to grow...this book pushes the bounds of reality without losing its interest or credibility. Indeed, these daring twists make the book a success. Best of all, Carr honors the spirit of both her heroines in this story, providing plenty of insight along with the action.” (RT Book Reviews)
“Carr’s knack for atmospheric storytelling and fast pacing keeps things rocketing along toward an explosive, bloody resolution, and the dueling voices of Eliza and Lizzie give the tale a unique set of perspectives.” (Publishers Weekly)
“Viola Carr has surpassed her earlier efforts. As in previous entries, Carr blends mystery, steampunk, science fiction, and all the literary references you might wish into one fantastic adventure... a fitting end to the trilogy” (Culturess.com)
Viola Car has written another dastardly good read… filled with compelling conflict, including Eliza’s ambivalence towards the cure she takes to suppress Lizzie, an ambivalence beautifully rendered in the author’s rich language. (Heroes and Heartbreakers.com Heroes and Heartbreakers.com)
“This book/series will appeal to fans of historical steampunk—with sorcerers, lycanthropes and fey creatures.” (Historical Novels Review)
From the Back Cover
In the stunning conclusion to Viola Carr’s Electric Empire trilogy, Dr. Eliza Jekyll must stop a murderer determined to control a terrifyingly powerful invention, but her other,m darker half, Miss Lizzie Hyde, has plans of her own. . . .
Being two people in one body isn’t easy. Metropolitan Police crime scene physician Eliza Jekyll is trying to maintain a semblance of control, even as her rebellious other self, Lizzie Hyde, grows increasingly wild. With an unstoppable slasher on the loose, a fiancé enmeshed in the dark world of French sorcerers, and an immortal scientist tasking her to heal the dim-witted king, the last thing Eliza needs is for Lizzie to appear and wreak havoc at will.
Eliza needs her mind clear and sharp if she’s to catch the murderer responsible for killing off the city’s most eminent scientists, one by one. At the heart of each death lies clues to a machine that shouldn’t exist, one powerful enough to destroy the world.
But as the mystery begins to unravel, Eliza discovers her own enemies are closing in, driving her to desperate measures in order to thwart the killer. And Lizzie’s no help. She’s got her own life now, and true to her nature, will resort to the devious and the diabolical to keep it. Even if it means throwing Eliza to the wolves, and letting the world burn . . .
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Top customer reviews
The story takes place in London, half on the cheery middle class side of town, but also half on the darker, seedier side of town. The juxtaposition of these settings can be jolting, though I mean that in a positive way. It draws attention to the polar personalities of Eliza and Lizzie.
Lizzie's favorite neighborhood is dark, gritty and populated with the ultra-poor, rejects, criminals, and not a few oddities that may or may not be human. Both crime and passion are rampant there, so I would expect much of the action to take place there. And it does.
Eliza's middle class neighborhood is calm. And it is mostly safe. But murder is not class-conscious and Eliza is called to investigate a murder that turns into a grizzly and convoluted case. I mean Grizzly with a capital 'G'. Ms. Carr's murderers have quite the imagination! And, as usual, Eliza seems to be working on more than one mystery at a time with her friend and partner, Inspector Harley Griffin. They work the cases, while Eliza's nemesis Chief Inspector Reeve, continually gets in the way. Reeve is such a great character to boo at!
Like books 1 and 2, The Dastardly Miss Lizzie has rather the intricate plot. Multiple murders, suspects galore and complex characters. Lizzie's friend Johnny and Eliza's beau Lafayette are part of the continuing cast of characters and both add to the romance aspect of the story, but also play their own roles in the big climactic finish.
Yes, there is a big finish. This plot far surpasses the solving of a serial murder mystery and becomes extraordinary. We are talking a magnificent, physics-defying, beyond-time, character-defining dénouement. Clues leading up to the finish are found all along the way, though I don't think I could possibly have guessed who the baddie was and what they would do. Let's just say it is a satisfying, steampunkish ending to an amazing series.
The relationship between Eliza and Lizzie is, by far, my favorite part of these stories. It adds both suspense and humor. The manifestation of Lizzie when Eliza is in control is a delightful complication to the relationship between these two. Their constant battle to either hate each other or support each other itches to be resolved. The writing, clearly depicting these two personalities is so cool, with the different voices and dialects. By the way, if you happen to enjoy audiobooks, narrator Beverly A. Crick is a genius with these voices and the first time I heard her read a scene where Eliza shifted to Lizzie, I got chills.
I would like to say that The Dastardly Miss Lizzie can be read as a stand alone, but I believe the experience would be immensely enhanced by reading the books in order. Otherwise, you might be likely to quote Eliza's clockwork assistant Hippocrates: “Does not compute.” You will better understand the relationships and also Eliza's and Lizzie's background.
It is impossible for me to review The Dastardly Miss Lizzie without referring to the entire Electric Empire series. I immersed myself in the series this summer, re-reading book one and following it up with book 2 and book 3. This series is dark and light, gritty and fantastic, creepy and funny, disastrous and hopeful. It has romance, mystery and a quite a bit of steampunkiness throughout. I love this series!
Review copy provided by Edelweis.
The Dastardly Miss Lizzie opens with Eliza and Lizzie still at odds in the same body, although now Lizzie appears more as an apparition in Eliza’s everyday life, which is the last distraction Eliza needs. Eliza and her job are still under pressure to solve the mystery of murderer-at-large The Slasher. Then, there’s a new case where the deceased are all prominent scientists whose latest experiment could have significant impact on the world.
Added to all this is the fact that Eliza’s sometime lycanthrope fiancé Remy Lafayette has been conducting undercover business within the sorcerer community in Paris. As war looms on the horizon, Remy’s loyalties are called into question.
Then there’s Eliza’s other-half Lizzie. Lizzie is growing frustrated coming in second-fiddle to the Doctor. With the frustration comes an ever more reckless abandon, regardless that her actions will directly affect Eliza. Lizzie could care less, she’s ready to take charge no matter the consequences.
Eliza and Lizzie have one of the more dynamic relationships that I’ve ever read. Yes, this has a lot to do with them actually sharing the same body, but Viola Carr has always played this relationship very well, giving each their own distinctive traits. In Dastardly, I felt like everything was shot into overdrive as far as the escalating tension between Eliza and Lizzie. You can tell from the beginning that something’s going to come to a head, you just don’t know exactly how that is going to happen.
The entire book was a big surprise for me, actually. This may be due to the fact that it’s been about a year and a half since the second book was released, but I felt like I came into a story where there was still so much left open, in addition to the new case that Eliza picks up as well. It felt overly jam-packed, so I wasn’t able to get as invested in the story as I otherwise might have been.
This is especially true in regards to the relationship between Eliza and Remy. Remy was out of the picture for the majority of the book. Many of the revelations involving him occur while he’s away and Eliza has much time to contemplate their relationship. I like them together a lot because they both have to deal with dual identities. Remy changing at the full moon, and Eliza of course with Lizzie. It was a common ground where they could both understand one another, yet here some big things happen for Remy, yet we don’t see because they happen off page. I understand that he is not a main focus character, but his ties to Eliza warrant more explanation.
Like the other two books, Viola Carr again tackles another classic sci-fi story. I won’t tell you which one here because I think it would turn out to be rather spoilery. Suffice it to say, it’s always an interesting concept, but I felt like it kind of get pushed aside for everything else that happens in this book.
Amongst everything going on, though, there is a lot of character growth, especially where Eliza is concerned. I don’t know what the plans are in regards to this series, but the way Dastardly ends could be a good way to cap things off if it is, indeed, the ending. This series has been a rollercoaster ride from start to finish, and I would love if we got more stories.
Most recent customer reviews
Quick & Dirty: Eliza and Lizzie are back and not only must they solve a murder, they must save their country and the future as...Read more
The Dastardly Miss Lizzie is a fitting farewell to the inimitable Dr. Eliza Jekyll and her wayward alter ego Lizzie Hyde.Read more