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Waistcoats & Weaponry - Gail Carriger, Moira Quirk

This third installment of this series, while still filled with steampunk goodness and badass characters, was not as engrossing or fun for me as the first two books. Half the fun of these books lies in the over-the-top lessons and the weird goings-on at Mademoiselle Geraldine's. Because this book mostly took place outside the school, many of the loveable and quirky characters we’ve come to know and love are not present.

The plot in this third book also felt overall slower and less complex. The first two books build on the plot and twist frequently, whereas this book focused more on developing relationships between the characters.  This would have been fine, except it mostly involved a lot of love-triangle-ness for Saphronia.  I am not opposed to love triangles as a firm rule, but if they are present they need to feel real and necessary.  In the case of Saphronia's love dilemma, the choices she has to make seem to be so obvious every single time, and one of her love interests is so unbelievably frustrating.  This makes me hate this particular love triangle.

I love world building in books like this, and we do learn significantly more about the werewolves in Saphronia's world.  Unfortunately, the way the information is presented doesn’t flow nearly as easily as the vampire tidbits we get in book two of this series. This is mostly due to the fact that the events surrounding the werewolf community are relayed second- or third-hand and not (for the most part) experienced real-time by the characters.

I hope the next book in the series continues to build upon the characters and setting discussed in the first three books, with a greater emphasis on showing and not just telling about the world around Saphronia.  I would recommend this series to fans of steampunk, alternative historical fiction, vampires, and werewolves.