Wednesday, February 29, 2012

A CLOCKWORK CHRISTMAS by Jenny Schwartz, J.K. Coi, PG Forte and Stacy Gail.

Publisher: Carina Press
Date published: December 2011
ISBN 9781426892875
Steampunk romance
Reviewed by Valerie
Obtained by Netgalley

Crimewave in a Corset by Stacy Gail.
Cornelia Peabody is more than perturbed to find someone has broken into her house. A thing which should be impossible…but there she finds the handsome Roderick Coddington who claps a timepiece to her wrist. He has found out that she was the one who had stolen a very valuable Fabergé egg and he wants her to steal it back. If she doesn’t do so within seven days and before Christmas morning, the timepiece will kill her. There are two things that could thwart his plan. His attraction to her and where the egg has ended up.

This Winter Heart by PG Forte.
Ophelia Leonides has returned to the husband who cast her off. Destitute and caring alone for a child, she needs his help. But Dario is still angry with her and her father. Although he loves Ophelia, he cannot forgive their deception, and the boy she has with her could not possibly be his son. Still, Ophelia fears for her life and that of her son if her condition becomes common knowledge and Dario could lose her forever.

Wanted: One Scoundrel by Jenny Schwartz.
Esme Smith is the daughter of the richest man in Australia and a suffragette. She needs a man to help her lead her political party as she cannot enter the men’s clubs. She is introduced to Jed Reeve, fresh from America. He is amused that she thinks he is a scoundrel and working for her is no problem as he is already sympathetic to her cause. But he is very interested in this intriguing beauty and soon he is protecting her against another man who it seems will stop at nothing to marry Esme and her fortune.

Far From Broken by J.K. Coi.
Colonel Jasper Carlisle knew that Callie would always be the love of his life and that his marriage with her made his life worth living. Then, Callie is kidnapped and terribly tortured. The only way to save her life is to give her mechanical implants. Callie awakes with anger. Anger at Jasper. But Jasper wants to show Callie that he still wants to have a life with her but there is still an enemy out there who is bent on destroying what Jasper and Callie are slowly rebuilding.

I really enjoyed reading this anthology of Christmas themed stories. I have always liked the Steampunk genre and these authors give some interesting tales within this genre.

Crimewave in a Corset was great fun. I enjoyed the characters, the premise and seeing the romance blossom. I also enjoyed watching Cornelia struggle with her feelings and seeing her grow. Always a strong woman, she had learned to take care of herself. Stacy Gail has written a tight, compact story that had me captured until the end.

This Winter Heart was interesting. I don’t want to say too much and give away some surprises, but PG Forte had me sitting up in my seat while watching this and marveling at how she pieced this one all together. We’ve read these kind of stories before, but this one is different.

Wanted: One Scoundrel was in my opinion, the best story in the bunch. I really enjoyed this. The characters are well rounded, the plot was very interesting and the romance is sweet. Jenny Schwartz writes great dialog and captivating characters. This one had me smiling too. Esme seems to be a tough chick, but she’s a bit naïve when it comes to men and their intentions.

Far From Broken is a bit of a darker story. With torture and a woman who is scarred not only physically but psychologically too. We see the patience of her husband who tries to win her back and the danger that looms that tries to tear them apart. JK Coi has penned a story that although good, would have been better had it been a full length story so that there could me more depth given.

All in all, this anthology was a good read and I would recommend it to anyone who loves reading Christmas themed stories and ones in the Steampunk genre. We have flying machines, timepieces, strange inventions and mechanical body parts. I hope you enjoy all this too.

This is an objective review and not an endorsement of this book.

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