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Book Review: The Spiritglass Charade


THE BOOK: The Spiritglass Charade (Book 2 in the Stoker and Holmes series)

AUTHOR: Colleen Gleason

THE GENRE: Young Adult, Steampunk

AUTHOR WEBSITE: http://www.colleengleason.com/

Book Synopsis

Evaline Stoker and Mina Holmes never meant to get into the family business, but after the Affair of the Clockwork Scarab, they are eager to help Princess Alix with a new case close to her heart. Seventeen-year-old Willa Ashton is obsessed with spiritual mediums, convinced she is speaking with her mother from beyond.

While Mina is determined to prove Miss Ashton is the hapless victim of fraud, Evaline senses there is something more sinister—or otherworldly—at work. The list of clues piles up—an unexpected murder, the return of vampires to London, and a mysterious spiritglass—but are these things 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.

Spiritglass Charade Book Review

I have been a diehard fan of Colleen Gleason since she started her Gardella vampire series. Discovering that she just began a young adult series was like getting a Christmas present in June! Her writing is just as wonderful in this series as it is in her adult one. I could not put this book down. I would go to sleep at night having read it for hours before turning off my light, and I would wake up in the morning and reach for it so I could get in a few chapters before I had to leave for work. It was seriously that good!

The plot revolves around two female detectives, one a niece of the great Sherlock Holmes, and the other a feisty vampire hunter with the last name Stoker. So, we’ve got brawns and brains working as a team to solve all of London’s greatest mysteries. The two characters live up to their names too. Holmes is very bookish and analytical, while Stoker is always looking for some adventure, preferably a vampire to stake.

The mystery that makes up most of the plot is intriguing and Gleason constantly leaves readers guessing as to who the “bad guy” is. I think I made ten different guesses, and I was still surprised by the end of the novel. Gleason also adds a very sweet romance for both of the female protagonists. Going back and forth between each one is a delight, as they are both at completely different stages in their romance and are having completely different types of romantic entanglements. This definitely spices up the book!

Overall, the second novel in the series is a nice mix of adventure, romance, female bonding, and the cool setting of the 19th Century steampunk Victorian era. I’m desperate to read the first book now. Don’t be like me. Reading books in order is a very good practice. Suffice it to say, though, this is a great read, and I highly recommend you all give it a look-see.

Adaptation Recommendation

I think this series would make a great TV show, what with it’s multiple adventures and all. The jaunty atmosphere would make for great comedic affect, and the mystery would keep audiences hooked week after week.

Have you read The Spiritglass Charade? What are your thoughts on the book? Are there any other books that speak to you? Sound off below…

Overall Rating

Five Star Rating border

“The stuff that dreams are made of.”

Romance Rating

Five hearts border

“You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope.

I have loved none but you.”


Book Info:

Page Count: 362

Publisher: Chronicle Books LLC (October 7, 2014)

Buy at: amazon


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By on June 8th, 2015

About Rebecca Lane

Rebecca Lane grew up in the hot desert landscape of Tucson, Arizona where she decided early on she wanted to write, if only to mentally escape her blistering surroundings. She has always been enamored of the arts and literature. As a child she often wrote short stories, and rewrote the endings of novels that she simply could not abide. She received her Undergraduate degree from Sarah Lawrence College in New York, where she was lucky enough to also spend a year studying at Oxford University. While she began her journey dreaming of the day she would sing opera in a large Manhattan theater, she found in the end she could not stand waitressing and simply could not give up books and her hopes of someday writing them. She is currently working as a freelance writer/editor and earning her Masters in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University.

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