Thursday, 20 October 2011

A Clockwork Christmas Anthology by Carina Press

We Wish You A Steampunk Christmas

Changed forever after tragedy, a woman must draw strength from her husband’s love. A man learns that love isn’t always what you expect. A thief steals the heart of a vengeful professor. And an American inventor finds love Down Under. Enjoy Victorian Christmas with a clockwork twist in these four steampunk novellas.

Release Date 5th December 2011

Rather than write a review of the book in general, I thought I'd review each story separately.

Crime Wave In A Corset by Stacy Gail
Roderick Coddington is on a mission to make Cornelia Peabody pay. After identifying her as the thief who stole a priceless FabergĂ© egg from his dying sister, he finds her and shackles a deadly timepiece to her arm. If she doesn’t return the egg by Christmas morning, she will die.

Normally seven days is more than enough time for Cornelia to carry out the perfect crime, but Roderick’s intrusion into her life is beyond distracting. He challenges her mind, and ignites her body with desire she’s never felt before. But worst of all, he threatens the independence she values above all else...

As Roderick spends time with Cornelia, he realizes there’s a lonely soul hidden beneath her beautiful but criminal veneer. Falling for a thief wasn’t part of Roderick’s plan, but plans can change and he has no intention of letting another priceless treasure get away from him.

First thing's first, I loved the title of this story. Don't know why, but I did.
The story was interesting and the characters likeable. And, as for any Carina Press story, the sex scenes are always heat inducing!

This Winter Heart by PG Forte
Eight years ago, Ophelia Leonides’s husband cast her off when he discovered she was not the woman he thought she was. Now destitute after the death of her father, Ophelia is forced to turn to Dario for help raising the child she never told him about.

Dario is furious that Ophelia has returned, and refuses to believe Arthur is his son — after all, he thought his wife was barren. But to avoid gossip, he agrees to let them spend the holidays at his villa. While he cannot resist the desire he still feels for Ophelia, Dario despises himself for being hopelessly in love with a woman who can never love him back.

But Dario is wrong: Ophelia’s emotions are all too human, and she was brokenhearted when he rejected her. Unsure if she can trust the man she desperately loves, she fears for her life, her freedom and her son if anyone else learns of her true nature...

An enjoyable story with a very likeable female lead and a bastard-come-nice-guy of a male lead. I liked Ophelia from the get go and Dario was a meanie to start but soon realised how much he loved his wife.

Wanted: One Scoundrel by Jenny Schwartz
All suffragette Esme Smith wants is a man. A scoundrel to be precise. Someone who can be persuaded to represent her political views at men-only clubs. As the daughter of the richest man in Australia, Esme can afford to make it worth the right man’s while.

Fresh off the boat, American inventor Jed Reeve is intrigued by Esme’s proposal, but even more interested in the beauty herself. Amused that she takes him for a man who lives by his wits, he accepts the job — made easier by the fact that he already shares her ideals. Soon, he finds himself caught up in political intrigue, kidnapping and blackmail, and trying to convince his employer he’s more than just a scoundrel...

Again, a good story with likeable characters. This time I loved the male lead first, he was sexy! Esme was strong hearted and independent, a must (I think) for any steampunk book.

Far From Broken by JK Coi
Soldier. Spymaster. Husband.

Colonel Jasper Carlisle was defined by his work until he met his wife. When the prima ballerina swept into his life with her affection, bright laughter and graceful movements, he knew that she was the reason for his existence, and that their love would be forever.

But their world is shattered when Callie is kidnapped and brutally tortured by the foes Jasper has been hunting. Mechanical parts have replaced her legs, her hand, her eye ... and possibly her heart. Though she survived, her anger at Jasper consumes her, while Jasper’s guilt drives him from the woman he loves. He longs for the chance to show her their love can withstand anything ... including her new clockwork parts.

As the holiday season approaches, Jasper realizes he must fight not just for his wife’s love and forgiveness ... but also her life, as his enemy once again attempts to tear them apart.

Instant pity for Callie and love for Jasper. A slightly different take on other steampunks I've read in that the woman is the one given all the power.

So, a good anthology of fun steampunkiness. I liked seeing what steampunk gadgets and inventions the four different authors came up with, they were all different and some of them I'd like to see in this day and age.

Amazon UK: A Clockwork Christmas

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