Sep 29, 2014

ARC Review--The Spiritglass Charade by Colleen Gleason

After the Affair of the Clockwork Scarab, Evaline Stoker and Mina Holmes are eager to help Princess Alix with a new case. Seventeen-year-old Willa Aston is obsessed with spiritual mediums, convinced she is speaking with her mother from beyond the grave. What seems like a case of spiritualist fraud quickly devolves into something far more menacing: someone is trying to make Willa "appear lunatic," using an innocent-looking spiritglass to control her. The list of clues piles up: an unexpected murder, a gang of pickpockets, and the return of vampires to London. But are these events connected? As Uncle Sherlock would say, "there are no coincidences." It will take all of Mina's wit and Evaline's muscle to keep London's sinister underground at bay.

I received this ARC from the publishers via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review, I was in no way compensated for this review.

Colleen Gleason continues on with the marvelous world of London in The Spiritglass Charade. In this London there's vampires, Venators, possible spirits, and more than a few familiar faces!

Little time has passed since Evaline and Mina worked what was dubbed The Clockwork Scarab case. And all too soon another possible case falls into their lap from the Princess Alix. Willa is a young lady who believes she is communicating with her dead mother in order to locate her missing brother. She has been seeking the assistance of psychics in order to commune with her mother's ghost better. All too soon though, the psychic helping Mina is murdered and so goes Evaline and Mina's best suspect.

I truly love this series and one of the best parts about it, for me, is that we're still in the same world as Colleen's first heroine Victoria Gardella...only some odd years later. Evaline is our Venator, destined to hunt vampires, except London's been vampire free for awhile...until now that is.

I really enjoyed the pacing of this one, as there was a lot of buildup surrounding the mystery and the girls have quite a bit of investigating to do! I didn't quite foresee our villainous mastermind, but then again, I had a long weekend in between reading in this where I didn't read at all! Shame on me!

I love the romantic tensions we have going on here. There's definitely more than one! And to think it's dear Mina who finds herself in the love complication (not quite a triangle at this point, hence my preferred "complication"). Mina finds herself crushing on Dylan--our mysterious boy from the present (2016) day! I love this aspect of the story too! How time-traveling gets subtly mixed into the storyline. I will be interested to see how things either work out or don't with Dylan and if he ever returns home. Mina's second possible amour choice is none other than Inspector Grayson, the young inspector who Mina clashes with quite regularly these days. There's a definite tension between these two. And while both Mina and Grayson are intelligent, it seems when it comes to attraction, these two have no idea what they are doing!

And then there's Evaline and her romantic tension! Pix is yet another mystery that I can't help but love! This guy has been mysterious from day one, aka book one! And while I feel like we might have more Pix time in this book, we still don't know much about this guy and it is driving me bonkers! He's very mysterious and even Evaline notes that his appearance is always altered. While there were definitely more than a few moments between Evaline and Pix, I'd be just as eager to get to know more about his character as I am to see more romantic moments between him and Evaline!

The action was very well paced, as I might have alluded to! Colleen writes an incredibly engaging story alternating between Mina and Evaline's points of view! I do enjoy this tactic, especially since Evaline and Mina are so different in their mystery solving. One who goes with gut instincts moreso and then other is all about logic and deduction, traits passed down to her from her father and most famous Uncle Sherlock!

The ending was quite a jawdropper too! It was really astounding what Colleen did to us there in the last sentence! I mean really?! And now I must wait a year plus until the next one! Regardless, The Spritglass Charade is not one to be missed by fans of Colleen or fans of a good mystery mixed with paranormal goodness and steampunk delights!

Overall Rating 5/5 stars--(we could say 4.9 stars for that last little grouping of sentences but I won't begrudge Colleen or the book that! It's merely the wait that is excruciating!) 

The Spiritglass Charade releases October 7, 2014


  1. I LOVED the Clockwork Scarab!! I can't wait for this one! Thanks for your thoughts! I always look forward to reading them :)


  2. Ooo this sounds super interesting! I haven't read a vampire novel in a while and I like the sound of this one (mostly because I love romantic/sexual tension).

    Excellent review, you've got me sold! :)

    Amber Elise @Du Livre

  3. It's good to see you giving this book such a high rating since I've seen this one around! I definitely have to look into it when I'm back from vacation ;)


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