Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The Girl in the Steel Corset (Kady Cross)

Title: The Girl in the Steel Corset
Author: Kady Cross
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Length: 473 pages
Rating: 2.5/5

Finley is not an ordinary Victorian housemaid. When an employer tries to take advantage of her, she lets her dark side fight back. Griffin King, an attractive orphaned duke, sees the value in her dark side and takes Finley under his wing. With his own mysterious powers, Griffin recruits Finley to help him fight a criminal called the Machinist.

I started off really liking this book. About half-way though, I wanted to chuck it out the plane window. I can’t tell you if it’s the book itself, or the steampunk genre that didn’t jive. I’ll have to read more steampunk to find out, but for now, let me tell you what I liked and didn’t like about this book.

1.      Finley is a Victorian girl with a backbone, and a wicked fighter at that.
2.      A good range of characters: There’s the attractive duke, his part-robot hulky best friend Sam, their brilliant scientist Emily, and an American cowboy with a secret, Jasper. I was also quite fond of Jack Dandy- the handsome criminal mastermind.
3.      My favorite part was the rich guy vs criminal guy aspect going on. I do love criminal bad-boys with good hearts who fall for heroines.

Didn’t like:
1.      Maybe this is the steam punk thing, but I really didn’t appreciate the explanation of things like flashlights and motorcycles as if they were the coolest thing ever. I get that it’s Victorian England, but in a science fiction/technologically advanced world. But it wasn’t exciting.
2.      An American cowboy? Seriously? What in tarnation was he doing in this book (other than setting up a sequel?) He wasn’t even introduced the first time he appeared- he was just there one day.
3.      Viewpoints were switching all over the place. Normally, I like a little variety. Here it was just too much.
4.      Not enough character growth throughout the book. I wanted to beat Sam over the head with a large rolling pin for being such a complete idiot over and over again.
5.      I figured out important plot points before they were revealed to the characters. Why would I keep reading when I know what will happen?
6.      Things were repetitive and the writing had moments of cliché. Perhaps this book could have used stronger editing to neaten these things up a bit, because despite all these flaws, there was still a good story with fun moments underneath. 


  1. I thought Jasper the American cowboy was totally random and added almost nothing to the story. Glad I wasn't the only one, because a lot of folks seem to like him! But I didn't like Jack Dandy either :P

    Great review! Will you catch the sequel?

  2. Thanks for the comment Amelia-glad we agree about Jasper! I'm not sure the sequel is worth my time...have you read it?