The Girl in the Steel Corset

Title: The Girl in the Steel Corset
Author: Kady Cross
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Publication Date: May 24, 2011
Genre: Steampunk
Pages: 473
Source: Library

Summary from Goodreads- In 1897 England, 16-year-old Finley Jayne is convinced she’s a freak. No normal Victorian girl has a darker side that makes her capable of knocking out a full-grown man with one punch. Only Griffin King sees the magical darkness inside her that says she’s special . . . that she’s one of “them.”

This was an interesting read. I have heard a little bit about the recent trend in the subgenre called steampunk, but this was my first experience with a novel from that realm. I should probably explain the concept of steampunk before I continue my review, so here we go: steampunk is essentially a historical novel with the addition of technology. To be honest, though, I don’t know much more about it than that, only having just scratched the surface with this book.

I felt the pace was a little slow-going at first, despite the drama that became apparent right away in the story. It picked up a bit as the book went on, but all the drama and excitement was somewhat understated, which may have been what Kady Cross was going for, but of course one can’t know for sure.

I didn’t find any of the characters particularly complex, except for maybe Sam. I believe Cross tried to complexify them, but their reactions to events were all fairly predictable. In fact, the whole story seemed predictable to me, but despite that I did enjoy it somewhat. On the note of complex characters, something I wish Cross had done more was play up Finley’s dark side. I also wish she didn’t directly state the Jekyll/Hyde comparison, as it was fairly obvious and didn’t leave anything for the reader to figure out.

I also don’t know if it needed to be quite so long; again, this may have been a pacing issue. Tightening up some of the writing and making the characters more dynamic and dramatic could have made this book pack more of a punch, but I still stand by my 3.5 rating.

Check back soon for a review of the next book in the series, The Girl with the Clockwork Collar, generously sent to me by Harlequin.


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