On Tour with Prism Book Tours.
I signed up to review because I hadn’t read a fully enjoyable Gaslamp novel in a while and the blurb sounded great. I’d never heard of this program before so I was instantly curious.
Okay, all of this happened after the gorgeous cover caught me, but still, it counts.
What I didn’t count on was it being a sequel in a series. Oops. I ran out of time to read the first book and review it, so I read this first as a standalone. But that may have worked out for the best…
(The Perilous Journey of the Not-So-Innocuous Girl #2)
by Leigh Statham
by Leigh Statham
Paperback & ebook, 297 pagesSeptember 20th 2016 by Month9Books
Lady Marguerite Vadnay and her trusty automaton, Outil, have settled into life in New France rather well. Marguerite is top of the class at flight school and her future as an aerpilot is nearly secure. She has everything she wants— except a commission on the pirate hunting dirigible The Renegade. Using every card in her aristocratic arsenal, Marguerite wiggles her way onto the finest warship France has to offer. But as usual, Marguerite’s plans endanger the lives of those she holds dear— only this time no one else is going to save them. As Marguerite and Outil set off on a rescue mission they may not return from, she finally realizes it’s time to reorder her cogs.
This steampunk adventure is littered with facts from The Golden Age of Piracy and follows (not too closely) some of the lives and adventures of the brave men and women who sailed the seas as privateers, pirates and soldiers.
Other Books in the Series
(The Perilous Journey of the Not-So-Innocuous Girl #1)
by Leigh Statham
by Leigh Statham
Paperback & ebook, 297 pagesMarch 17th 2015 by Month9Books
Lady Marguerite lives a life most 17th-century French girls can only dream of: money, designer dresses, suitors, and a secure future. Except she can’t quite commit to a life of dull luxury and she suspects she may be falling for her best friend Claude, a common smithy in the family's steam forge. When Claude leaves for New France in search of a better life, Marguerite decides to follow him and test her suspicions of love—only the trip proves to be more harrowing than she anticipated. Love, adventure, and restitution await her if she can survive the voyage.
Based on the true story of The Daughters of the King, Louis the XIV’s social program to settle the wilds of Canada with women of noble birth, Marguerite’s steampunk adventure follows in the footsteps of nearly one thousand brave women and girls who were rewarded handsomely for trekking across the pirate infested Atlantic to a strange land.
"The writing is solid and the world-building – that clever combination of historical detail and Ms. Statham’s imagination – is excellent."~ The Australia Times Books
Leigh Statham was raised in the wilds of rural Idaho, but found her heart in New York City. She worked as a waitress, maid, artist, math teacher, nurse, web designer, art director, thirty-foot inflatable pig and mule wrangler before she settled down in the semi-quiet role of wife, mother and writer. She resides in North Carolina with her husband, four children, five chickens and two suspected serial killer cats.
Leigh is also a founder of QuantumFairyTales.com and is currently serving a life sentence there as senior editor and gnome driver. She loves all things sparkly and strange that go bump in the night.
|The Good||The Bad & The Other|
|+easy fun read||-Halfway through Marguerite almost lost me with her antics|
|+hooked me from the get-go||- Iroquois men seen as exotic man candy, which is problematic and not called out like the classism is.|
|+liked all the characters|
|+perspectives were spot-on|
|+loved the character growth|
|+didn't see the surprises coming|
Right away, I was pulled into the story. It was easy on the eyes and flowed beautifully. There’s plenty of refresher information so I didn’t feel like I missed anything. It was quite comfortable just jumping in. My luck paid off and the good feeling lasted.
Marguerite and Outil, the automaton, were a blast. Marguerite’s voice was spot on with her airs and perspective. She really is too spontaneous. I was cursing her stupid actions from the beginning, but wasn’t put off; I was cheering for her to get it right. It was only after numerous occasions of the same kind of stunts and her persistent privilege that it finally got to me.
I was about to say fuck this, but she turned it around right after. And I mean RIGHT AFTER I was tired of her antics. Then the threads came together, and she stepped up. I loved how she was authentically flawed from this standpoint at first and thankfully she progressed so it didn’t become a liability. It can be right but irritating to read and the line in the sand was drawn in the right spot.
Besides are troublesome heroine and her voice of reason, Jacques the love interest plays the biggest role. They have a push-pull flirty courting-but-not relationship. Marguerite is all about her independence, while Jacques is the “protecting you for your own good” gentleman.
I was on Marguerite’s side at first and then became frustrated how she kept sabotaging herself. She became a liability to where I had to admit the fools had a point about her. That’s, again, when she stepped up. I was so relieved! Then ~stuff~ was revealed that I didn’t see coming because I was wrapped up in her narrative. Now I’m like “Well, you both learned your lesson. You’ll be better next time. I look forward to it.”
There’s one other thing to mention though…Minor Spoilers Below:
Marguerite grows from her elitist views of other airwomen and lower class women in general. Which is fantastic. Really. (Though she doesn’t spare the same thought for lower-class men.) And I was quite pleased how she was corrected in regards to the Iroquois and legitimately changed.
“I am Iroquois, and my people are native to this land, but we are not native in the way you suggest.” His voice was proud and sharp.
She stopped calling them “natives” very quickly. What also happened was being attracted to the man like *that*. It was all animal lust tied into how different he was. She had to remind herself OF Jacques. It’s hard to pinpoint, but all their interactions felt…improper.
She wondered what her father, or any of the upper classes of France, would say if she walked into a ball with Otetiani on her arm. My, but he was handsome.
She started with the sheltered perspective of what white academics thought of the “natives” in books, and grew a tiny bit. And swooned. But they remained curiosities and fantasies to her using stereotypes of men of color. Which made me uncomfortable to say the least.
Plus, given I though Iroquois were matrilineal I was rather disappointed we only saw the men and that the men weren’t different living in a society like that. I mean, why flirt with the white girl that would have nothing in your society so you’d have nothing too? How would that even work? Would the women decide to accept her in or shun them both? Why is it automatically assume he’d move with her to her society and not the other way around?
Independence was nice, but so was luxury.
“I was up half the night thinking of all my hard work being thwarted by the men who claim to love me.”
She had much more important things to think about than getting along with common aerwomen.
She was much better with machines and gadgets than she was with everyday nonsense such as rope.
Problematic 4 star read that was a light, quick, and fun read. If you like spontaneous women that grow as people, I highly recommend it. Unless you can’t stand sheltered, elitist snobs.
September 11th: Launch
September 18th: Grand Finale
• 1 winner will win signed copies of The Perilous Journey of the Not-So-Innocuous Girl and The Perilous Journey of the Much-Too-Spontaneous Girl plus some awesome Steampunk goggles (US only)
• Ends September 23rd