Review of Beauty and the Clockwork Beast, by Nancy Campbell Allen

I borrowed a copy of Beauty and the Clockwork Beast, by Nancy Campbell Allen, from my local library.

Description from Goodreads:
When Lucy Pickett arrives at Blackwell Manor to tend to her ailing cousin, Kate, she finds more than she bargained for. A restless ghost roams the hallways, werewolves have been reported in the area, and vampires lurk across the Scottish border. Lord Miles himself is clearly hiding a secret. He is brash and inhospitable, and does not take kindly to visitors—even one as smart and attractive as Miss Pickett. He is unsettled by the mysterious deaths of his new wife, Clara, and his sister, Marie. Working together, Miles and Lucy attempt to restore peace to Blackwell Manor. But can Lucy solve the mystery of Miles? Can she love the man—beast and all?

Review:
Amusing, but nothing exceptional. Lucy is your oft-seen plucky, science-minded, Victorian lady and Blackwell is charmed by her almost immediately, despite being a beastly grump. They were sweet. But so much of the book is established but never explored. There was a war apparently, Blackwell and his three besties fought in it. No idea what it was about, but there were laser guns. There are vampires and they’re bad apparently, and there’s some sort of “vampiric assimilation aide” that lets them blend in with people. But no depth to the vampire mythos. Same can be said for werewolves. There are steamships and telegraphers and tesla coils, but no real clues about how this effects society. Really, no proof that this is ‘steampunk’ as the cover proclaims and not electro-punk, ether-punk, diesel-punk, etc because the technology is kept vague. I didn’t dislike it. I enjoyed the read, but I wasn’t blown away.

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