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Kiss of Steel (London Steampunk) Mass Market Paperback – September 1, 2012
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This month's Book With Buzz: "The Silent Corner" by Dean Koontz
A dazzling new series, a pure adrenaline rush, debuts with Jane Hawk, a remarkable heroine certain to become an icon of suspense. See more
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*Starred Review* Honoria Todd had a happy, comfortable life until her father was murdered. Now, six months later, she is desperately clinging to the illusion of respectability while at the same time taking care of her younger sister and brother. When Honoria loses her job teaching elocution, she has no choice but to accept the offer of Blade’s protection from her old nemesis, the Duke of Vickers. As the unofficial ruler of Whitechapel, Blade might share the same taste for blood as the Echelon, who live in the posh part of London, but his philosophy of life is nothing like that of the blue-blooded aristocrats who rule over the city. Discovering the secrets Honoria closely guards could provide Blade with the leverage he needs to finally bring down Vickers, but only if Blade’s unexpected love for Honoria doesn’t destroy them both first. Set in an exquisitely imagined, alternative late-nineteenth-century England, McMaster’s wildly inventive plot deftly blends elements of steampunk and vampire romance with brilliantly successful results. Darkly atmospheric and delectably sexy, Kiss of Steel is an extraordinary debut. --John Charles
"McMaster's London Steampunk series is everything I want a steampunk worldrichly imagined, gritty and dark, and full of hot heroes and hot sex. Yes, the sex in this book is utterly delicious. " - Smart Bitches, Trashy Books
"Tickles the mind with fantastic pictures and exquisite characters. " - NetGalley Reader Review
"A fun, romantic read and I'm looking forward to reading more from this author. " - NetGalley Reader Review
"Unique, spellbinding, thrilling and complex ... a must read for paranormal fans and steampunk fans alike. 5/5 Stars, Reviewer Top Pick" - Night Owl Reviews
"An enthralling debut... A leading man as wicked as he is irresistible... Heart-wrenching, redemptive and stirringly passionate... A series opener to be read and savored. 4 1/2 Stars" - RT Book Reviews
"Dark, intense, and sexy, this mesmerizing debut takes readers into a grim, depraved, clearly crafted Victorian steampunk world... A stunning new series with an intriguing twist on the vampire theme." - Library Journal
"Smart, sexy storytelling at its best." - Fresh Fiction
"An impressive debut. Highly recommended." - NetGalley Reader Review
"Undeniable, crackling-with-tension chemistry... " - NetGalley Reader Reviews
"Compulsively readable... The mythology surrounding the vampires and the not-quite-vampiric blue bloods felt fresh and original, and it really added a lot to the overall atmosphere of the book. " - Mindful Musings
"Great plot, great character development, intense steamy moments and a great ending. I can't fault a thing. I was captivated from start to finish." - Sinfully Delicious Book Reviews
"Plenty of tension and suspense with several mysteries to solve..." - Sia McKye's Thoughts Over Coffee
"McMaster creates a fantastic world... I was hooked from the first few pages and found it almost impossible to put down. " - Book Chick City
"Wildly different from anything I have ever read... What an imagination Bec McMaster has. " - BookLoons.com
"Outstanding steampunk book with creative world-building, action packed plot and heartfelt characters." - The Book Vixen
"Stellar... an amazing world, complex characters and action-packed plot. Steampunk fans will gobble this book up" - The Romance Reviews
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Top Customer Reviews
Kiss of Steel (London Steampunk Book 1) by Bec McMaster surprised the heck out of me. It isn't because it shockingly violent, because that's exactly what I expected. It isn't because of the alternative universe creatures and machines. Or the pace, which is impressively fierce. (There are certainly plenty of adventures and battles involving that whole cast of creatures - humans, vampires, wolves, mechanical bodies etc etc.)
I wasn't even surprised by the hero, who survives because he drinks human blood every day - although I found that disquieting and, at one stage, the obsession with blood, blood, blood became overwhelming.
The surprise came when, instead of being turned off by all the blood, violence and weirdness I actually enjoyed reading Kiss of Steel. Why? The writing is good. The plot makes sense - admittedly steampunk sense. So McMaster got me to fall for the altered reality and, more importantly, to fall for the h and H.
The latter feature in a sensual love story with overtones of sadness - and, for those who want it, loads of steamy sex that is very well portrayed. (I often find these scenes a boring turn-off in romances, but McMaster managed to keep my attention, so, in retrospect, I think I must have been impressed.)
Most importantly, Kiss of Steel provides passion aplenty at the more emotional level, not only through the love affair, but also through the involvement of family, friends, the powerful and the damned.
I'm glad I tried something different. Thanks to Robin Wilson for the recommendation.
PS I agree with others who have commented on the cover. I love the layout, moodiness and use of colour - but the maybe the artist didn't read McMaster's description of the appearance of the h and H? A shame, because it would otherwise be a great design.
The H and h are a good fit, and there is plenty of angst to go around before we get out HEA. Easy to tell its part of a series, but while I haven't read the other books yet, I get the feeling that while Blade and Honoria may be present in other books, they won't be the focus and we can believe that their romance is at least safe, even if the rest of society may be tumbling down :)
I know alot of other reviewers commented on the cover. Frankly, I love the cover. Do the models fit the character descriptions? No. Do I care? No. The smolder between the models and atmosphere completely capture the book, and I have no problem with the physical characteristics being different. I prefer to use my own imagination to picture what the characters look like anyway. And this is a hot cover, so there's that too!
All in all, a great read. Not steampunk in what I think of as the traditional stream, but a wonderful spin into the paranormal. This book manages to mix two of my favorite genres together without overpowering the facets of each that made me love them in the first place. Well done Ms. McMasters, and I look forward to reading more of your work.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This was one of those PNR stories that took time to figure out the species. But, it was well worth the effort.Read more