Series: Stoker & Holmes Book One
Author: Colleen Gleason
Publication Date: September 17, 2013
Two young women of similar age and standing have disappeared: one found dead and the other still missing. The only clue to connect them is a small Egyptian clockwork scarab. Only Miss Stoker and Miss Holmes are well-positioned enough—similar in age and stature as they are to the victims—to investigate. An unlikely pair, the fierce Evaline Stoker and logical Mina Holmes must follow in the footsteps of their infamous families—Miss Holmes has inherited her Uncle Sherlock’s keen investigative skills, while Miss Stoker has accepted her family calling as a hunter of the undead. The partners must find a way to work together, while navigating the advances of a strange yet handsome American, a clever Scotland Yard investigator, and a cunning thief, to solve the mystery of the clockwork scarabs.
Set in steam punk London, steeped in Egyptian mythology
and literary references, with a surprising time travel twist and compelling romantic triangles, Colleen Gleason has crafted a fast-paced and romantic debut young adult novel.
A copy was provided through Edelweiss and the Publisher in exchange for an honest review
I have a short attention span when it comes to books. They need to grab my attention very early on and to keep it for me to read the whole thing through. I requested this title because A) Gorgeous cover (Yes, I'm a cover snob :P) and B) Seemed like an A grade premise.
In this case my problem was more with the characters than the love triangles, which I hate, and the convoluted elements this book mixes. Noticed how I said triangleS, yes PLURAL. One love triangle is enough to turn me away from a book, but this book manages to throw in TWO triangles. I don't know if to be impressed or disgusted to be honest. Funny part is, it wasn't even the triangles that made me stop reading. It was the MCs, more to the point Evaline Stoker.
The Clockwork Scarab was written in dual PoVs, switching between Mina Holmes and Evaline Stoker. Mina sounded, to me, like a boy. I just couldn't picture her as a girl for some reason. It was just the way she spoke and thought that kept reinforcing the male image. Even in the scenes when she is wearing a beautiful humongous Victorian gown it was still hard, though a bit easier, to really picture her as a girl.
But as I mentioned before my problem was with Evaline and the author's decision to make her an idiot for the plot's sake. I would usually just lower the rating for this but finish the book, but in this case it was just so blatantly done that I just couldn't for the life of me keep reading. They are in an undercover meeting, and the suspected bad guy is rambling on and getting his 'evil' on and is just about to start spilling some serious info, when lo and behold, Evaline jumps up from her seat puts her hood down, points and the 'villain' and SHOUTS, 'What did you do to XX?!'. SERIOUSLY?! WHY?? What in the world would propel you to jump out of your seat and out yourself like this for no damn reason?! It's not like the dude is going to calmly explain to you why he had that certain person killed...I just don't get it. I really don't.
So that, plus Mina sounding like a dude, plus the triangles was more than enough to finally make me mark The Clockwork Scarab as DNF. Sad too, but it really had such promise! As much as Mina sounded like a dude, I liked her PoV because of the deductions she made and I was looking forward to the Egyptian Mythology, but it all just too much for me.