The Girl in the Steel Corset

The Girl in the Steel Corset

Book rating: 03 Paperback The Steampunk Chronicles

By (author) Kady Cross

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Format
Paperback $10.06
  • Publisher: Mira Ink
  • Format: Paperback | 384 pages
  • Dimensions: 129mm x 198mm x 45mm | 324g
  • Publication date: 1 June 2012
  • Publication City/Country: Richmond
  • ISBN 10: 1848451121
  • ISBN 13: 9781848451124
  • Sales rank: 33,299

Product description

In 1897, London, sixteen-year-old Finley Jayne is running. She s been viciously attacked by a young lord but that s not the problem. The problem is what made her fight back the darker side urging her to danger, horribly delighted at the prospect of violence... With nowhere left to go, one man comes to her rescue. The richest man in England, an orphaned duke, a misfit like her. Griffin King, and his little company of strays. Fighting against vicious automaton and criminal mastermind The Machinist, Griffin has a use for Finley. But she has to be willing to put her life in his hands. This is her chance to finally be part of something, finally fit in. But as a real life Jekyll and Hyde, the question is, can she control the evil within her?

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Customer reviews

By MissPageTurner 28 Nov 2013 3

Finley Jayne's on the run from her past. She just took care of a lord who molested her. Or more precisely, her bad side did. There are two sides battling for attention in Finley, one good and one evil. She's lucky young duke Griffin and his friends take her in and show her a new world, one filled with magic and solidarity.
What starts with a kick-ass heroine in action gradually reverses into a series of trivial dialogues and unexciting scenes. Since we are given access to so many characters' perspectives, Finley, Griffin, Sam and some others, there is little chance for anticipation and wondering left. My attention was amiss more than once during the story.
Finley's and Griffin's love story is of the average kind, too few intense feelings and actual kissing scenes. A love triangle was purely unnecessary, so Jack Dandy, the man who Finley's dark side favours, was a character I just couldn't get acquainted with. Finley's biopolar personality is the most interesting aspect about THE GIRL IN THE STEEL CORSET because it made her such an unpredictable character


3/5 *** THE GIRL IN THE STEEL CORSET – A diverting 19th century stroll with rather weak performance on part of the clockwork automatons.

Victorian London is one of my favourite places for a story to be set. We will even be graced with Queen Victoria's presence. Evil master minds as enemies and clockwork automatons always promise to bring some excitement to the story, not so much in this case. THE GIRL IN THE STEEL CORSET is a historical fiction with fantastical elements I only enjoyed to a certain extend.

By K R Weinert 13 May 2013 4

First Thoughts
The blurb's intriguing, it mentions so many people that I was had to reread it: "Who's part robot? Who's got the unrequited love for him? Who's Finley again? The funny thing is this reflect my feelings about the book, so the blurb is a good indicator of the book.

The dress is gorgeous and we see a bit of the steel corset poking out at the top, but after reading the book this dress doesn't fit with the equally gorgeous dress Finley (Fin) does wear.

Plot
The plot's great and the sub-plots are trickled in to provide even more potential for the series. My only issue is that the point of view shifts from character to character making it seem that the plot isn't as good as it really is! The sub-plots are wonderfully complex, but they actually come across as complicated because the reader has a number of characters to track. Rating: 3.5 out of 5

Pacing
The amount of description and background information provided in the narrative slows the pace, and made the story feel longer than it should have been. Rating: 3 out of 5

Characters
The characters drew me in at the beginning, they all have their own quirks and distinct personalities. Finley is quick to punch people and I found that aspect of her personality pretty immature, even though the reason for her behaviour is explained. Her strange approach to conflict resolution took some getting used to, but by the end I accepted it as a part of her.

As for the others, having their own special abilities helps them stand out from each other. I love that they're working together as a secret team to protect Victorian England. Unfortunately, the plot is what held my attention rather than the characters. Even though taken individually they're all well detailed, solid characters; I struggled with the point of view shifts.

Fin's the main character but this book flits from character to character shifting the focus so often I couldn't connect with any one character. In fact, my favourite characters ended up being those whose point of view we aren't given - the aunt, the American friend, and the rogue. The rogue, Jack Dandy, being my favourite. I can't rate this aspect of the writing low...as they are well drawn characters, and I'm even inclined to rate it a little more highly than the plot, sigh. I know this sounds at odds with what I said about the plot holding my attn over the characters, but anything less than a 4 would make it sounds as though the characters are forgettable or inconsistent, and they're not. Rating: 4 out of 5.

World Building
Super steampunk tech that I thoroughly enjoyed reading about, whether that was fun gadgetry from one of the team, or the really creepy technology from The Machinist. Liked the fancy London of the Lords and Ladies, and loved the seedy, underground world of rogue, Jack Dandy. Rating: 4 out of 5.

Final Thoughts
I actually read this book in 2011, and it wasn't until I read the sequel, The Girl in the Clockwork Collar, that I realised how memorable I'd found all the characters - especially given my initial feelings of being a little overwhelmed by meeting so many 'major' characters at once. Final Rating: 3.6 out of 5 (from 14.5 out of 20)

Recommended to: Readers who enjoy steampunk lit with great tech, well developed characters and a decent plot.