"Alexia Maccon, the Lady Woolsey, awakens in the wee hours of the mid-afternoon to find her husband, who should be decently asleep like any normal werewolf, yelling at the top of his lungs. Then he disappears - leaving her to deal with a regiment of supernatural soldiers encamped on her doorstep, a plethora of exorcised ghosts, and an angry Queen Victoria.
But Alexia is armed with her trusty parasol, the latest fashions, and an arsenal of biting civility. Even when her investigations take her to Scotland, the backwater of ugly waistcoats, she is prepared: upending werewolf pack dynamics as only the soulless can.
She might even find time to track down her wayward husband - if she feels like it."
This is the second book in the Parasol Protectorate series from Gail Carriger. I loved the first book in this series and was really looking forward to it. I was not disappointed!! It picks up about three months after Alexia's wedding to Lord Conell Maccon, Alpha werewolf of the large Woolsey pack, and she's more or less adjusted to life in the pack. Until of course there are suddenly many more wolves to deal with, and camping on her front doorstep (very inconsiderate of them too!). But it can't hold Alexia's attention for long. For some reason all supernaturals in a certain area of London have found themselves decidedly mortal again. Very bad news for the ghosts, because it meant sudden exorcism. *poof* no more ghosts in that area. Alexia's new position as muhjah for the Queen means she has good reason to investigate it. Her investigations lead her to Scotland, where her husband also disappeared, without a word to her, to. But being Alexia, a preternatural generally feared by the supernaturals, it is not long before things get even more complicated and she finds herself the specific target of some serious unpleasantness, both with the company she finds herself in and the acts being done against her.
This book was as fast and fun as book one. I am completely in love with the spunk and attitude from Alexia in the Victorian London setting. Add in the Scot's with their slightly less than respecful attitude to the English with Miss Hisselpenny's crazy hats, Alexia's simpering half-sister Felicity and Lord Maccon's claviger, thespian Tunstell (who may or may not be in love with Miss Hisselpenny) and you get serious entertainment as well as drama. I love it!!
There is depth and intrigue to just about every aspect of this story with some surprising twists along the way. We meet some very entertaining new side characters, as well as getting to know those we've already met better. I love the way Alexia and Conell play off each other. They're both strong willed characters who like having their own way and they seem to spend as much time yelling at each other as not. In a loving way, mostly.
I got warned by a couple of people on Jocelynn Drake's forum, very strongly, not to read Changeless before Blameless is out in September. I didn't get the advice until I was halfway through, which was kind of a shame because I should have taken it. The ending is shocking, totally didn't see it coming (well, one part of it I did, the other I didn't) and oh! I so need the next book right now!! I won't say the emotions involved because I don't want to ruin it in anyway for anyone. It was fantastically done and it leaves for a lot to be sorted in the next book. Left me hanging completely. I both love and loathe when that happens. I always hate the wait, I'm a very impatient person, but at the same time, I love it because it adds to the suspense and fun. If 'fun' is the right word... Still, this was a fantastic follow up to Soulless with drama and humor blended together seamlessly. This is a series that has easily jumped to my favourites list. Bring on Blameless!!