Read The Clockwork Scarab by Colleen Gleason Online


Evaline Stoker and Mina Holmes never meant to get into the family business. But when you’re the sister of Bram and the niece of Sherlock, vampire hunting and mystery solving are in your blood. And when two society girls go missing, there’s no one more qualified to investigate.Now fierce Evaline and logical Mina must resolve their rivalry, navigate the advances of not justEvaline Stoker and Mina Holmes never meant to get into the family business. But when you’re the sister of Bram and the niece of Sherlock, vampire hunting and mystery solving are in your blood. And when two society girls go missing, there’s no one more qualified to investigate.Now fierce Evaline and logical Mina must resolve their rivalry, navigate the advances of not just one but three mysterious gentlemen, and solve murder with only one clue: a strange Egyptian scarab. The stakes are high. If Stoker and Holmes don’t unravel why the belles of London society are in such danger, they’ll become the next victims....

Title : The Clockwork Scarab
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781452129860
Format Type : ebook
Number of Pages : 356 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Clockwork Scarab Reviews

  • Khanh (the meanie)
    2019-03-26 08:30

    "Miss Holmes. Miss Stoker. There are many young men your age who are called into the service of their country. Who risk life and limb for their queen, their countrymen, and the Empire. Tonight, I ask, on behalf of Her Royal Highness, the Princess of Wales: will you do what no other young women are called to do, and place your lives and honor at the feet of your country?”This book, while by no means perfect, was just a lot of fun. It is mostly plot-driven, without much character development nor depth. It is also bogged down by some truly stupid insta-loves and love triangles.Overall, I would still recommend this for a is a light, easy, fun read."Yes, I am willing,”Miss Adler was offering me a way to prove that, despite my gender, I was a Holmes in more than mere name and the size of my nose.The setting is London, 1889. This is a steampunk novel, but it is steampunk light. It can barely be called steampunk, because this is just a more mechanized, steam-powered version of Victorian London. The elements of steampunk are there, but they are so very minor as to be almost nonexistent in the book. Victorian ideals and beliefs still prevail. We have steam-powered engines, trolleys, electricity is outlawed, we have robot-like machines used around the house to help ladies put on corsets and practice dancing without a partner. London is just a little bit different.I disliked the new carriages, propelled by a steam engine and with no visible driver or engineer. They ran on some sort of magnetic tracking system. Ever since the Moseley-Haft Steam-Promotion Act had been passed by Lord Cosgrove-Pitt and his Parliament, everyone in London had been keen on them and anything else that could be mechanized and automated.Our heroines are Alvemina (who understandably prefers to be called "Mina" instead of her full name) Holmes, daughter of Sir Mycroft Holmes and niece of the famed Sherlock Holmes. Neglected by her father and abandoned by her mother, she is highly deductive (and thinks quite highly of herself), impulsive, completely lacking in social graces, and not altogether familiar with common sense, however book-smart and practical she is. Mina claims to be a scholar, and an admirer of her uncle's work. To be honest...I didn't find her too terribly smart, despite her self-professed assertion of being brilliant.Her partner-in-crime, reluctantly thrown together, is Evaline Stoker, of Colleen Gleason's Gardetta Vampires family series. She is a vampire hunter, who is feeling a little bored and more than a little helpless at her current situation (London is sadly lacking in vampires to hunt, since her famed ancestor Victoria has pretty much killed them all, half a decade or so ago). Evaline is the opposite of Mina. She is beautiful, socially graceful and active, and as much as Mina is a scholar, Evaline is a warrior, despite her quiet front. She is a vampire hunter, and she does know how to kick some asses.The two young ladies (and they are very young, 18 or so) are enlisted by Irene Adler of Sherlock Holmes fame, to investigate the deaths of some young society ladies. Along the way, they encounter mysterious Egyptian clues, secret societies, and mysterious young men---one of whom might even be a time traveler. He wears strange pants! His shirt has no buttons and a word that looks like AEROPOSTA on it. And he carries a strange device...I pulled the device from my pocket. It looked like a small, dark mirror, but its window or face was black and shiny and reflected a bit of light and no clear image. About as big as my hand, it was slender and elegant, made of glass and encased in silver metal. I turned it over and noticed the faint image of an apple with a bite out of it. I don't know if it's an unintended joke on the Apple theme...but Evaline's mentor is named Siri.Both Mina and Evaline are very different, and they are initially distrustful and judgmental of each other. Mina is dismissive of Evaline's skills and personality, based on her beautiful exterior.According to The Venators, the vampire hunters of her family were endowed with superior physical strength and unnatural speed. I wondered if it was true. She certainly didn’t appear dangerous.And Evaline is similarly disparaging of Mina's braininess, calling her a "gawky brain-beak", which is also a dig on Mina's appearance, since Mina has unfortunately inherited the famous Holmes beak-like nose.Despite their initial dislike of one another, they slowly warm to each other, and become appreciative of one anothers' strengths. They are not perfect, and both act really, really idiotically at numerous times in the course of their investigation. Mina walks into dangerous situations alone, without any defense, as well as invites a perfect stranger (a MAN, no less) to stay over at her home, knowing of the danger and the ridiculous impropriety of it. Similarly, Evaline acts like an impetuous fool, and completely blow their covers on more than one occasion. However, they are excellent foils to each other, since they are both there to bail the other out when one is endangered. Their partnership grow to be one of trust, and maybe even friendship.That was when I realized that, somewhere along the way, she’d ceased being Miss Stoker and had become Evaline.Not quite a friend, but no longer a stranger.There is not much character development in this book...both characters start off being unsure of themselves and their situation in the world, and are eager to prove their worthiness. They do accomplish that, to an extent, but that's the magnitude of their maturity. There is not much beyond that.My major complaint with this book is the forced romances. Thankfully, Mina and Evaline never did fight over a guy, but I found their respective love interests to be such a stupid stretch. One of the two character not only falls into insta-love, but also gets involved in a stupid love triangle. The other gets involved with some mysterious young man who speaks in an exaggerated Cockney accent, who makes an appearance at pretty much every place she turns up (in this day, we'd call that a stalker), and kisses her silly at every chance. And naturally, our lovestruck heroine is intriged. BY A COCKNEY-ACCENTED STRANGER NAMED PIX. LIKE PIXIE./facepalmRegardless of the stupidity of the numerous romances in this book, it was an fun read. Recommended for people who want something light that doesn't require them to think too much.

  • Ariel
    2019-04-10 04:27

    This was super fun! The best aspect, by far, was that we were playing with some fascinating characters: the niece of Sherlock Holmes and the sister of Bram Stoker! It was neat to see what the author chose to do with the characters. I also really enjoyed the setting: I've barely read stamp punk, and this was a cool foray into the genre!As for negatives, I'd say that I really didn't feel chemistry between the main leads and the plot was pretty simplistic.Review coming to YouTube soon!

  • Jacob Proffitt
    2019-04-07 06:13

    At first, I thought I was going to like this a whole lot better than I did. Indeed, for most of the book, I enjoyed it well-enough. Two heroines, strong in very different ways, learning to work together to fight crime, unmask villains, and solve mysteries.Unfortunately, some elements of the book enter from left field. (view spoiler)[Like the stupid nonsense about Dylan--a boy from the future shows up for no reason? Seriously? Shows up in a story that can't actually be in the past because, hello, Sherlock Holmes is a fictional character. So he's, what? Fallen into a storybook, or something? (hide spoiler)] And there's a terribly contrived love triangle being setup for the series, and I hate that.But it really takes a turn for the worse in the last quarter of the book. If you spend a lot of time establishing strong female leads, it'd probably be best if you don't have them fall all over themselves screwing up in crucial moments as your story draws to a close. (view spoiler)[Especially if they then let the bad guy escape in the end.(hide spoiler)]This was particularly bad with Evaline Stoker where she goes from being stronger than anybody (because she's the slayer, essentially) to being manhandled, pushed around, even casually knocked out by pretty much everybody--and that's not even touching that Gleason made her freeze up at the sight of blood. Ugh.Not that Gleason didn't neuter Mina Holmes as well. The essential characteristic of Sherlock Holmes is that he is so much smarter than everybody around him that he gets frustrated dragging them along--particularly official police-type everybodies. Not so with Mina. No, she gets a very special love-interest police somebody who not only keeps up with her effortlessly but shows her up at least twice. Which means that if Gleason was trying for a girl empowerment fantasy (which I very much wish that she had), then she not only failed spectacularly by creating female characters that screw up in crucial moments despite great gifts, she also added male counterparts who were better than those girls in their own areas of expertise (I haven't mentioned Pix, but he's about fifty times more effective than Eva and he actually had to work to gain his abilities--and with the added bonus that he doesn't freeze up at the sight of blood, too).Anyway, the book ends up a complete mess, for me. Someone who came to this book interested in ordinary girls who stumble and bumble around to eventually succeed in not dying won't have as big a problem, I'm sure. Which kind of makes me wonder why Gleason would feature Stoker and Holmes. With those evocative names, you'd think she would create a story about rising to meet challenges suited to extraordinary girls. Instead, we get a villain straight out of central casting with insane plans whose successes occur because our heroines fail a lot. That's a tragic failure to execute on a brilliant premise, that is...

  • Regan
    2019-03-31 04:30


  • Cora ☕ Tea Party Princess
    2019-04-13 05:16

    5 Words: Sherlock Holmes, Time Travel, Steampunk.So this was a bit of a surprise for me. For one, it absolutely flew by. It ended and I was actually surprised because despite everything wrapping up quite nicely, I was prepared for more.Jayne Entwistle does a fabulous job of reading this. The next book in the series is on my audible wishlist and so are a few of her other readings.I liked the distinct voices. Even if I wasn't paying attention to the beginning of the chapter, where it told you who the narrator was, I was never lost. It wasn't just the voices that the actress was giving the characters were different, it's that the characters themselves were so distinct.This plays on Sherlock canon, adds a dash of Steampunk and a touch of time-travel, picks up some Bram Stoker on the way and then runs madly into the wild, flailing its arms around hoping to pick up some ancient Egyptian lore. And it's excellent.

  • Wanda
    2019-04-20 05:13

    Something a little different for my real-life book club—a steampunk novel. A perfect, light little book for reading during the heat of August, when who really wants to exert themselves too much?It’s a young adult novel, but it’s charm is dependent on the reader having some familiarity with Sherlock Holmes and Bram Stoker. The stars of this show are Mina Holmes (Sherlock’s niece) and Evalina Stoker (Bram’s much younger sister). Each of them are talented in their own rights, Mina as a thinker and reasoner like her uncle, Evalina as a vampire hunter. Brains and brawn, in other words.When the two young women are forced to work together, their innate independence stands in their way to begin with. But resistance is futile, and they find themselves relying on each other more & more. Of course, there are love interests introduced for each one—a law man and a rapscallion, just to emphasize their tempermental differences! Since neither woman expected to find a suitable romance, they are surprised & confused by this state of affairs.While this book will never achieve the durability or popularity of the original Conan Doyle or Stoker creations, it is cute and fun, and I will probably read at least one more book in the series.

  • Sandra (LadyGrey Reads)
    2019-04-11 08:22

    Read for the Summer Biannual Bibliothon 2016Actual rating: 3.5First; love the setting, love the steampunk, love the fact that it feels like one of my own fanfictions. I seriously had to double check that Colleen Gleason was not me in disguise, because there were so many elements of this story that I tend to use when I write fanfics, such as the (view spoiler)[time travel/person entering a fictional story (hide spoiler)], whichever it turns out to be. Although, I've never written steampunk, at least not well, so I guess I'm not the author of this.Also, the story felt very short and condensed. It could have been extended and elaborated and had a lot more details than it ended up having. Victorian London + steampunk setting should equal a ton of things to describe to really set the tone, but there was very little of that. The two main characters could also have been developed further - and described better. I forgot what they looked like after a while, which (for me) meant that I lost some of the immersion with the story.But a good start to the series, I'd say, and I look forward to reading the next book.

  • Ferdy
    2019-04-06 10:19

    SpoilersThis wasn't as good as Gleason's Gardella Vampire Chronicles (which I loved), but it was still a fun read.-Clockwork Scarab was essentially a run-of-the-mill murder mystery with steampunk elements, plucky heroines, and not-so-great love triangles. There were some parts that dragged and some aspects that were a tad over the top… like the secret Egyptian cults, the cartoonish bad guys, and the random time travel arc, it was a bit much.-I don't usually like dual POV's but it worked quite well in this. Mina (Sherlock Holmes's niece) and Evaline (vampire slayer/Bram Stoker's sister) were both decent enough protagonists. I much preferred Mina over Evaline though, she was more likeable and interesting, whilst Evaline was a little dull and TSTL. -I was disappointed that Mina and Evaline didn't really get along, they had a mostly antagonistic relationship. Yea, I really wasn't impressed that both of them judged the other from the get go, they didn't even know each other yet they made all sorts of bitchy judgements. They had more of a friendship at the end, but I find it annoying that apparently most female characters just can't get along from the get go.-Evaline and Mina's characters were kind of cheesy. Mina was smart (kind of), socially awkward, and obsessed with solving things — so she was basically a young, female Sherlock. Whereas Evaline was reckless, idiotic, and full of herself — she was the typical YA 'kickass' warrior heroine. It would have been better if they hadn't been quite so predictable as characters.-The love interests weren't all that impressive. There was too much insta-lust going on for my liking, the girls fell for the first guy that took an interest in them. The only love interest that I was impressed with was Grayling, he had a good personality and his chemistry with Mina was rather sweet. Evaline's fella wasn't my cup of tea at all, he was the typical-cocky-in-love-with-himself-manslut type hero. -The Dylan/time travel arc didn't fit in with the rest of the story. I didn't see the point of his character at all.All in all, an enjoyable enough read. **ARC from Edelweiss

  • Lisbeth Avery {Domus Libri}
    2019-03-30 03:29

    I'm afraid that Colleen Gleason was trying just too hard with this book. The Clockwork Scarab was Gleason's first venture into YA and it seems that she wanted to put in all her great ideas for YA but it didn't work out that well. The Clockwork Scarab is a bookish chimera; with vampires, Sherlock, steampunk, time travelers, and cults centered on ancient Egyptian goddesses.Most of the aspects blended fairly well, except for the time traveling. It felt like it was slapped in because it had no real impact on the story. Dylan, the time traveler, wasn't even a major character. He had maybe one major plot changing appearance and that's it. He was really only in the novel for comedic effect.There was one time where Dylan was explaining to Mina that he plays hockey and how it works. In the book, Mina had absolutely no idea what hockey was. I'm sorry but hockey was invented in the early 1800s and it would have been popular already by 1889. The Clockwork Scarab is set in a (subtle) steampunk London, which was really interesting and unique. Most steampunk Londons are vastly different from the original London but here, it's barely altered. London is still as Victorian as ever, except not there are steam-powered robots to help dress people. The main characters, Mina and Evaline, were not really my favourite characters. Neither of them were interesting at all. I found Mina to be too much of the classic 'smart girl' trope (aka poor social skills, unable to get friends). She had very little actual originality. Not to mention, despite her 'intelligence', I didn't really find her all that smart.Evaline was somehow even less interesting than Mina. I don't know what to say about her because she wasn't really anything. At least Mina had some emotion and personality, while Evaline had pretty much nothing going for her.The story was incredibly interesting. I know I say that a lot in this review but it's really just that. It's just really entertaining and interesting (here's a new drinking game: take a shot every time I say the word interesting). The mystery was one that I actually felt interested in, instead of only reading because I have to. I don't often feel like that lately so it was a welcome surprise.The Clockwork Scarab was an interesting enjoyable read, which kept me going. It was definitely a fun book to read and I would recommend it to someone looking for a nice, light read.

  • Mariana
    2019-03-22 04:12

    Al leer la sinopsis de esta historia, lo primero que llamó mi atencón fue el hecho de que la autora uniera los linajes de Sherlock Holmes (personaje ficticio creado por Conan Doyle) con el de Stoker (escritor irlandés, autor de Drácula).Me sorprendió más aún que fueran chicas adolescentes las que protagonizan esta historia y que todo estuviera situado en un Londres steampunk. Hasta aquí, todo suena como un combo ganador.Reseña completa:

  • Athena Shardbearer
    2019-03-28 10:35

    "Miss Alvermina Holmes, Niece of the famous Sherlock and daughter of the indispensable Sir Mycroft Holmes.""Miss Evaline Stoker, granddaughter of the famous Yancey Gardella Stoker, great-grandniece of Victoria Gardella-both vampire hunters of excellent repute. Her elder brother, Bram happened to be an acquantance of my uncles, and I understood Mr. Stoker was writing a novel about a vampire name Count Dracula."Oh, I really enjoyed this one. I think this is fluff read but at its best. I have this guilty pleasure, I watch cheesy British TV and love it, so reading this was like watching those shows, but with a little history mixed in and strong minded MCs. "Miss Holmes, Miss Stoker. There are many young men your age who are called into the service of their country. Who risk like and limb for their queen, their countrymen, and the Empire. Tonight, I as, on behalf of Her Royal Highness, the Princess of Wales: will you do what no other young women are called to do, and place your lives and honor at the feet of your country?"Its London 1889 and these two young women are brought together to find missing young women, specifically socialites. Mina and Evaline together makes me laugh and want to cheer them on. They live in a time of oppression of women and the way they are to lead their lives and they make the best of it. They get into all kinds of trouble, encounter dangerous situations but always have each others back. There were times I did roll my eyes but I put it to the time period. A dozen young women were seated or half reclined on the cushions. They were arranged in lounging, unladylike poses. Florence would have fainted at such an improper display: loose hair falling over their shoulders, missing gloves, and stockinged feet. But it was the bare ankles exposed by their bunched up skirts that was the worst offense.I think this is a good beginning to an interesting series. I'm recommending this one to my cousins daughter. On to the next one. P.S. Bram Stoker and Sherlock Holmes make an appearance! also, loved the narrator!

  • Teresa
    2019-04-13 02:26

    WOW!!! I really don't know where to start here. This book was one of those perfect reads...escapism at its very best. Its a page turner, and its one of those books that make me feel as though I could become a mystery fan after all. The juxtaposition of chapters (Gleason writes one chapter from Ms. Holmes' viewpoint, and another as Stoker's, back and forth as needed for the story to rip along) is absolutely stunning. I found myself reliving my youth, curled up with this book on a cold winter's night with a cup of hot chocolate. I was reminded of my love affair with Nancy Drew as a child. I know time travel, steampunk, Victorian balls & soirees, vampire hunters, and 'real life' literary characters seems as convoluted as can be, but Gleason manages to pull it ALL together flawlessly. This dust jacket HAS GOT to be one of the most beautiful book covers I have ever seen. It has the coolest Steampunk scarab on the front! It makes me wish so badly to be a 'cognoggin'! If you are a fan of Steampunk, you need to read this. If you are a fan of Y.A., you need to read this. If you are a mystery fan, you need to read this. Basically, everyone just needs to read this!

  • AH
    2019-03-23 03:35

    Steampunk continues to intrigue me. I see it as kind of like a puzzle – taking everyday items and imagining how they would work if they were powered by steam. I’m so impressed by authors’ creativity and how these contraptions are incorporated into their narrative so seamlessly so that the steampunk gadgets are part of the world, not just as last minute accessories. In The Clockwork Scarab by Colleen Gleason, the author combines an enthralling steampunk London with Egyptian mythology, a touch of time travel, and two main characters with extraordinary family pedigrees. Evaline Stoker is Bram Stoker’s half-sister. She has inherited her family’s vampire hunting skills. As a Venator, Evaline is charged with dispatching the UnDead. Evaline has superior strength and accelerated healing capabilities. There’s also a nice tie-in to the author’s Gardella Vampire series – Evaline is the great grand-niece of Victoria Gardella. Then there’s Mina Holmes, Sherlock’s niece. Mina takes after her uncle. She has an excellent memory and amazing deductive skills. Evaline and Mina are called to the British Museum where they are instructed by Irene Adler that they are to go on a top secret mission for Princess Alexandra. They are to find out who has been killing society’s young ladies and leaving scarabs behind. The story is told in alternating first person points of view of Evaline and Mina. It was interesting being in their heads and seeing the world from their eyes. I did feel a preference for Evaline as Mina struck me as a little too proper and stoic. I did like the combination of these two characters as sleuths, they were kind of like a Victorian Odd Couple. The book is set in an alternate London in the late 19th century. All electricity has been banned as dangerous, so things are powered by steam. The city is built in layers and the upper levels are usually cleaner and “safer.” Lifts provide a way for people to walk on the upper levels. Airships roam the spaces between buildings and mechanical contraptions move people and things below. The mystery was enjoyable and I liked how the author incorporated the Egyptian god Sekhmet into the story. The story flowed well, however, there were spots where the story slowed down a little. The time travel element was a nice touch, though it was kind of left out until the end. I would have liked to have seen more of that character.The steampunk gadgets were so cool. Inspector Grayling’s steamcycle was a cross between a hovercraft and motorcycle and super-fast. I loved Evaline’s Mechanized Mentor, a mechanized dance and fighting instructor. Mina’s Steam Stream gun was really neat as well. The author spares no details: even Mina’s ball gown was decorated with little clockwork gears. I was a little disappointed by the ending. I was hoping that all the loose ends would be tied up, but they weren’t. Now I’ll have to wait for book 2 coming soon in 2014. Overall, The Clockwork Scarab was an entertaining read for me. I’ll have to start reading the Gardella Vampire series while I am waiting for the next book in this series.Thank you to Edelweiss and Chronicle books for a review copy of this book. Review posted on Badass Book Reviews.

  • Katja Weinert
    2019-03-29 03:15

    First Thoughts:How can I resist picking up the advance reader copy with such a blurb?! Have to discover how on earth steampunk, Egyptian mythology and time travel might mix. PlotA murder and a disappearance suggest that young, wealthy women in London are in danger, and no-one knows why, the only clue being a scarab - the Queen wants answers and no-one's likely to suspect young ladies of sleuthing. Irene Adler who once came up against Sherlock Holmes - and was deemed by him to be a very intelligent woman - makes the clever assessment that his niece, Mina Holmes, and Evaline Stoker, sister of author Bram Stoker, would make a great investigative team.The Holmes-esque murder mystery blends surprisingly well with elements of Eygptian mythology and time travel. There are wonderful layers of complexity to the storyline, but thankfully nothing too complicated. It's well told and easier to understand than I thought it would be. Rating: 5 out of 5PaceThe plot has lots of layers to it, and the joy of reading this story is that each layer is gently peeled back as we turn the pages. Rating: 5 out of 5.CharactersIf Evaline isn't being invited to parties or being flirted with, then she's running headlong into danger. Mina's more into thinking things through, but her keen intellect's challenged by the case, and she's somewhat baffled to find her quiet personal life has...well...gotten a life of its own. Attending parties, quarrelling with one Evaline Stoker and competing with the police are just the tip of the iceberg.The only trait the girls share is a fierce determination to prove themselves. Personally, Mina's my favourite. Her analytical personality may not be to everyone's tastes, but I love kind-hearted, socially awkward geniuses. The villain's not easy for me to comment on so I'll say he/she is cunning, and I can't wait to find out more about them in the sequel.Humour and flirtation are introduced to the murder mystery, time-travelling-steampunk, action-adventure in the form of three handsome young men. There's the thief, the strange American and the officer. The flirty thief has the best dialogue, since he's a wicked flirt and seems like the only guy able to get Evaline flustered. There's more to the American than first meets the eye, but my hands down favourite is the smart officer. Book crush material right there :) Team Grayling! If I wrote fan fiction Grayling would be falling in love with a new character who's a total Mary Sue. Rating: 5 out of 5World BuildingThere's a twist in the world building which I'm not going to touch on, on the surface we're in a steampunk London, but there's so much more to this world for the reader to discover. . Rating 5 out of 5Final ThoughtsAwesome sauce! Perfect for fans of steampunk, murder mysteries and witty one liners. The Clockwork Scarab captured my attention with its world building, vivid characters and humour - can't wait for the sequel.5 out of 5. (from 20 out of 20)

  • Beth
    2019-04-13 03:17

    To put it simply, this book was a perfect fit for me it had steampunk, science fiction, paranormal, classic book crossover characters, ancient gods, time travel and 2 very strong female protagonists...all a win, win for me. I am very happy to say I was NOT disappointed by my high expectations.Miss Holmes and Miss Stoker (yes, Sherlock's niece and Bram's sister) are an unlikely duo called upon by the Princess of England to unravel the murders of young society women. The corresponding clue to all these murders is a clockwork scarab. It will take all of Miss Stoker's extraordinary vampire fighting strength and Miss Holmes fabulous reasoning and observations to stop these heinous crimes.From start to finish I was pulled into this unusual caper, trying to sleuth the mystery for myself.The Clockwork Scarab provides a brilliantly written plot with twists and turns that will leave you guessing till the end and even then you will still want more.This ARC of The Clockwork Scarab was given to me by Chronicle Books in exchange for a honest review. This book is set for publication September 17, 2013.Series: A Stoker & Holmes NovelSequence in Series: 1Hardcover: 356 pagesPublisher: Chronicle Books Publication Date: September 17, 2013ISBN-10: 1452110700ISBN-13: 978-1452110707Rating: 5Genre: Steampunk and so much more...Age Recommendation: Young Adult +Colleen Gleason's WebsiteFind this book on: Amazon | Barnes & NobleFor more reviews check out Tome Tender's Book Blog or find us on Facebook.

  • Rowan
    2019-04-10 10:14

    Review also posted on Rowan Reads and RavesYou know, you’d never think that two teenage girls, one related to Bram Stoker from Dracula, the other related to Sherlock Holmes, could ever manage to work together to solve mysteries and save the day. And you’d be pretty much right. These two ladies definitely did not like each other and were not above making sure the other one knew it.First we have Alvermina Holmes, who unsurprisingly goes by Mina, a young lady who was abandoned by her mother, lives with a brillant father who is never home, and is known to mostly because of her crime solving uncle, Sherlock Holmes. She is headstrong, just as brilliant as her uncle, unfortunately not very fashionable, and definitely socially awkward. Mina brings the brains and determination, the logically side to the duo. She is also my favorite out of the two. I loved seeing how her brain works, working out clues and determining all of the possible explanations. But I could still relate to her because she wasn’t just a robot, she was still an awkward teenage girl. And I loved how she had kind of the feminist streak in a time where women aren’t really supposed to do anything improper. She didn’t care about propriety, she just wanted to use her brains and help people, and was constantly annoyed when people underestimated her because she is a woman.Evaline Stoker was a bit more difficult for me to like. She was beautiful, has super speed and strength, and has never killed a vampire despite her abilities. She made a few rash decisions in the book that she obviously didn’t think out, nearly getting both girls killed, and that annoyed me. I also didn’t like how she kind of seemed to put herself up on a pedestal because she was prettier and had more gentlemen interested in her than Mina. But I did like how she still tried her best to be a good addition to the team and use the strengths she had to help. I can appreciate when a character knows their strengths and weaknesses and can admit when they are a bit out of their league. I also found the whole vampire slaying thing to be really interesting, although we don’t get any of it since there are no vampires in London anymore, but I did like the few bits we got on her family history when vampires were still around.As far as the romance goes, we have several cases of forced insta-infatuation and even a love triangle. Yep, the dreaded love triangle. Evaline falls for some guy that I can barely understand because he uses a strong Cockney accent, and wears a barrage of disguises. But the best part is that he is named Pix. Like a pixie. Don’t ask because I really don’t know. Then we have Mina who is getting all swoony over some Irish detective, but who could blame her with an accent like that? But she is also panting over some boy that is from the future of a parallel world. When she first sees the future boy, she immediately gasps over how attractive he is. Two second later the detective walks in, and she again gasps at how attractive he is. I’m pretty sure Mina is just going to become obsessed and insert herself into the lives of every eligible bachelor she meets. Really, with both girls, their relationships don’t really get to in depth, it’s mostly just a steamy attraction sort of thing, so it was of little to no interest to me.I was actually really pleasantly surprised to see that this is a steampunk book. Very light steampunk for sure, but it’s still there and adds a little unexpected fun to this story. So this book looks kind of like a hot mess, considering just in the first few chapters we already have steampunk, vampires, time travel, and an evil Egyptian society, among other things. But I actually found that the author did a fairly good job of making things flow together well. She didn’t shove the steampunk stuff in your face or make it feel forced, so the little mentions we got of it were very intriguing.The plot itself was pretty fast paced and fun. The mystery wasn’t anything amazing, especially since it really didn’t even get solved in the end, which I’m sure will tie into a later book. But I did really enjoy the world, the steampunk parts were very interesting and I loved the more traditional historical London feel too. I did enjoy seeing the girls kind of dance around each other, not wanting to work together or cooperate, only to become a bit closer by the end. Their banter was really entertaining, as well as seeing their different lifestyles and how they were both kind of jealous of each other, even though they would never admit it. As for the time travel part, that mystery wasn’t figured out, a pretty stereotypical explanation was given and that was that. I’m convinced that time travel is only in the book so the author could bring a ridiculously attractive boy from the future for Mina to fall in love with, only for there to be a huge amount of drama once they find a way to get him back to his own time.While this book wasn’t anything amazing, I would consider it to be a light, entertaining sort of read. If you just want to settle down with a fun mystery, attractive young men, witty banter, and a hint of supernatural stuff, this would be the book for you. Just don’t expect to have your mind blown by an ingenious plot or character development. I’m pretty sure you’d be rather disappointed.

  • Sophi
    2019-03-30 03:35

    What was this book? It seemed like the author was just taking every modern teenage book plot and mashing them all together into a less than pretty sculpture of undefined mess.There was steampunk, there was mystery, there was Sherlock Holmes, there were vampires, there was time travel. And all this left me thinking: WTF?!First of all, the characters. The POV switches between the two main characters, Mina Holmes and Evaline Stoker. They literally sound almost exactly alike except Mina won't shut up about how smart she is, and Evaline won't shut up about how strong she is. Plus, while Mina Holmes constantly talks about how brilliant her mind and deductions are, when it actually comes down to it, her brilliant reasoning isn't all that impressive. Not to mention Mina constantly does idiotic things, contrary to how "smart" she is. I mean, inviting a guy you barely know, whom you just bailed out of jail, to stay with you alone at your house? Not only wildly inappropriate for the supposedly Victorian era, but downright stupid. Then, she has the nerve to act surprised when he sneaks out and steals back his cell phone from her bedroom. You're lucky he didn't murder you in your sleep, you idiot.Then, we come to Evaline. A vampire hunter. Her POV was slightly more bearable than Mina's for two main reasons.1. She doesn't give lengthy explanations for every tiny detail and why it is or isn't important.2. She doesn't pretend to be smarter than she is.Also, when she does stupid and impulsive things, it's more believable, because she is characterized as being impulsive, unlike Mina.Which brings me to my next annoyance. The characterizing. There was so much potential everywhere that wasn't properly seized. Evaline is supposed to be this super awesome vamp hunter, but she's never actually killed a vampire. She's squeamish about blood. Her mentor up and disappeared. Why is none of this taken any further than a couple of lines? Mina's father is never around, and her mother just up and left one day. At the risk of sounding like a TV therapist, "how does she feel about that?" And it can't just be sad. Duh, she's sad, but WHAT ELSE? Is that why Mina acts like such a know it all, because her mother left and she's trying to prove her independence? Beats me. It's not like the author ever gives us any insight. Every time it seemed like the characters were given some depth, the author dismisses it and moves on to more important things like how much it rains in London (um...duh).Next order of business, the relationships between characters. Or lack thereof. At no point during the story did I feel like Mina and Evaline were a team. Sure, at first, they're supposed to be at each other's throats, having just met and all, but at no point did their friendship actually feel like it became a friendship. It felt like they went from acquaintances to... slightly warmer acquaintances. And don't even get me started about the love interests. Emphasis on the plural. How many more love triangles can I handle? Not many more, I can tell you that. They are SO old and tired. Luckily the two main characters didn't fight over the same guy, but they did turn into complete idiots whenever any of these guys were around. It's annoying when women talk about how they want to prove their worth in a world where men are in charge, and then fall to pieces whenever men are around.Anyways, this leads nicely into my next topic to pick on: Dylan. WTF????!!!!! What is the point of him? No seriously,What is the point?!At no point was he in any way important to the character development in the story, the worldbuilding, the plot, or the mystery solving process. He literally falls out of the sky, jumps around a few pages, and causes general confusion because OMG he's a time traveler! He does absolutely nothing for the story. If he weren't there, there would be no difference, except the plot would've been less confusing. I kept waiting for him to be relevant, distracting myself from everything else that was going on, but IT NEVER HAPPENED!!! The only reason he's there is to provide a love triangle for Mina, which btw, also would've been better to leave out. I honestly think I've discovered one of the most pointless characters in a book ever. Nothing about Dylan is resolved at the end of the book.Let's talk about worldbuilding, shall we? It was pitiful. It's got all the modern conveniences, but steam powered. I thought there would be more conflict later on with the whole electricity vs. steam thing, but guess what? It wasn't important. Just another point the author dropped in and never explored.Also pitiful? The plot itself. The mystery could have been good, but there were no secret twists and turns. At no point during the story did I say, "Wow, I wonder what happens next!" It was all very linear and not at all clever or intriguing like a certain detective I could mention, or even the Enola Holmes series. The only thing that I couldn't figure out was the gender of the villain. Which was SO important that it seemed like one of the only things the main characters could think about at any given time.So to sum it all up, the book wasn't that good. The mystery was tepid at best, the characters were flat, the world wasn't explored properly, Dylan existed, and the love triangles were laughable at best. Not one I'd recommend.

  • Mary ♥
    2019-04-08 05:27

    5/5 stars*review to come*

  • Beth
    2019-03-24 06:20

    Interesting location. I do wish they did the full Scooby doo and unmasked the villain.I started to suspect Irene but why involve the girls if so?

  • Malia
    2019-04-09 03:19

    THE CLOCKWORK SCARAB is a mixture of steampunk history, mystery and adventure. This sounded like a very promising premise, especially with the intriguing idea of introducing Sherlock Holmes' niece and Bram Stoker's sister as the heroines. However, maybe this was just too tall an order, because the book never really managed to arrive where I hoped it would. The protagonists' rapport seemed too contrived, the friendship not solid, the romances very predictable, and the ending unfortunately, unsatisfying(unresolved and setting up the sequel-actually a clever selling point...)That said, this was the first steampunk book I have read, and though it took a little getting used to, it added an element of inventiveness, The story centers around the murder and disappearances of society girls in 1889 in London. For a somewhat vague reason, the two seventeen year-olds, Mina Holmes and Evaline Stoker, are called in to solve the mystery. This made no sense to me, since the police was already involved and the police officer seemed competent enough. Anyway, then we're given a weird cult obsessed with Egyptology, which our genius detectives deduce must be connected to the girls going missing. Further, an element of time travel is thrown into the equation, adding yet another complication. There was a lot of telling, not showing, which sometimes felt odd and not necessary, because this was really a book where the reader could have used their imagination to draw up their own images of this version of London.I think this story could have been charming and clever, a real stand-out even, if Gleason hadn't thrown in quite so much and forced it to fit together. Still, the story did hold my attention, hence the three stars. Beyond these issues, the reason I couldn't really connect to this book was that the characters felt very one-dimensional and considering the fact that they were meant to be partners, they hardly spent any time together! For me, even if the plot of a book is so-so, if the characters are strong or intriguing or I just really like them, the book is a worthwhile read. I was so hoping that would be the case here, because the characters sounded so interesting. Maybe they will be more fleshed out in the sequel, but I'm not quite sure I'm committed enough to read it. Possibly, I just had the wrong expectations for this book. In any case, I'm glad to have been given the opportunity to read this First-Reads Giveaway copy, and hope to have provided a fair and fitting review.Find more reviews and bookish fun at

  • Olga Godim
    2019-04-02 02:21

    An average YA book. To tell the truth, I expected much more from it than it delivered. The story is interesting though: a murder mystery (kind of) set in an alternative London circa 1889 in a steampunk-ish milieu. There are murdered girls there, a secret Egyptian cult, time travels, and two intrepid heroines. Well, not very intrepid but a little bit for certain. The protagonists are two teenage girls: Mina Holmes, a niece of Sherlock Holmes, and Evaline Stoker, a younger half-sister of Bram Stoker. The crazy mix of real and imaginary personages and situations continues from there, making this fictional world a fascinating one. There are gadgets galore in this world but electricity is illegal. There are society balls and corsets, but a policeman rides a flying motorcycle. There are airships and multiple walking levels on any street, but the plumbing seems as rudimentary as it was in reality of that time. Absurdities pile up on top of one another plot-wise, as our protagonists investigate.Why do they investigate? Because of their stupidity – I don’t have any other explanation. And here lies the root of the problem with this book. While the story is a fun romp across urban fantasy tropes, the characters are flat and boring, totally artificial. I couldn’t bring myself to care for either of them. They behave like silly girls more often than not. Their flaws and quirks seem to be sewn to their dull, colorless silhouettes by an inept seamstress. Nothing is organic, and nobody is alive. The same is true for the secondary characters as well.It was a struggle to finish this book, but because of the promise of the story and the kooky world the author created, I’m giving it 3 stars.

  • Zachary Roner
    2019-03-24 04:22

    I won the ARC and so I felt compelled to review it even if this isn't the place where it was won.I guess I came into this one expecting the wrong thing. I love Sherlock Holmes and I love books with Supernatural elements so I was kind of excited, but sadly I wasn't given what I sought. What I was given instead were two young women who think entirely too much about how close they are to a man rather than how they can work together.Mina is a Holmes and has been gifted with the same abilities as her uncle Sherlock. Evaline is related to Bram Stoker and part of her legacy is the fact that she is a vampire hunter. The two of them have been called into the service of the princess of England. Each attempts to use their unique gifts to stop the disappearance and murder of young eligible women. As they delve deeper into their quest they find out that things go in a direction that they did not expect. The book mixes the genres of steam-punk, detective, time travel and the paranormal. I for one think that the author bit of a bit more than she could chew. The detective work was subpar and the action was never described very well. I could tell in her writing that she was better at the fluttering of a teen girl’s heart, but that is not what I sought from this book. That being said I did find things I enjoyed about the book. I just did not care for the one dimensional nature of the lead characters or the fact that the time travel element was never properly explained or used in the book. I would not recommend this book to an adult who cares more about a good plot than the simpering of a girl. Do not get fooled by the premise like I did.

  • Nicole
    2019-04-19 06:24

    What do you get when you combine steampunk, mystery, vampires, and time travel? This book, of course! The many different elements may seem clumsy, but I thought Gleason pulled it off wonderfully. I was a bit unsatisfied that the time-travel part wasn't further explained and the other characters just somehow automatically accepted that Dylan was from the future, but I know there is a second book in which I hope it will be further explored.I loved the writing style. So often I find in YA, that yeah, the story is fine, the characters are okay, but man, this writer sounds like they are really bored with their own story. The Clockwork Scarab actually kept me awake and on my feet.The main characters were a little dull, I have to admit. The narrator switching every chapter threw me off sometimes because Evaline's and Mina's voices sounded so similar. Just when I thought I had their personalities pinned down, they did or said something to make me go "Whhaaaa-?"I actually really, really loved this book- way more than what you get from my review (see the five stars?). It's not perfect, but the story is so original and has so much character. It was just a really fun read!

  • Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
    2019-04-11 09:19

    You know, I was seriously questioning my decision to take a copy of the third book in this series from BEA. I mean I’d only read the first book, and I was sort of eh on it anyway. Nonetheless, since I took it, I decided to reread The Clockwork Scarab before embarking on the series.The first time, I listened to the audiobook, because it was one of the nominees for the Audies. I was not impressed. You see, The Clockwork Scarab has dual female narration by Miss Stoker and Miss Holmes, but the audiobook was narrated by one woman. I could not tell the two women apart in the audiobook version, which is a damn shame since the voices are actually quite well done in the print. Miss Holmes’ narration has a certain precision and prissiness to it that makes her and Miss Stoker quite distinct in their voices.I had a blast rereading, and the book went by so fast. I’m really excited to carry on with the series and see how my ships turn out. I’m very much on board both the ship Pix/Evaline and the frigate Mina/Grayling. I’m just concerned about Dylan, and what Gleason’s plan is for him. DON’T MESS WITH MY SHIPS, DYLAN.

  • Shelley
    2019-03-20 09:13

    *Genre* YA, Steampunk*Rating* 3-3.5*My Thoughts*To say that I am a fan of Colleen Gleason's writing would be an understatement. I loved her Gardella Vampire Chronicles series that features Victoria Gardella, Max Pesaro, and Sebastian Vioget. I have also read her new spin-off series featuring Macey Gardella that is set in the US during the 1920's. I really would love to hear from the author in regards to the familial ties aspect that has me slightly confused. Maybe she can draw a family tree starting with Victoria down to Macey!The Clockwork Scarab is set in 1889 London where steam is the lifeblood of the city. Electricity has been all but outlawed by those who have a controlling interest in keeping steam around permanently. Steam plays such a vital part in this story, that you will be remiss if you don't pay attention to the different gadgets that are introduced. For me, I loved the steamcycle (Motorcycle) that a certain Inspector Grayling rides around at break neck speeds.The story focuses on the fact that young women have disappeared and later turn up dead and it leads to a mystery surrounding the Egyptian goddess Sekhmet. When Sherlock Holmes very own nemesis Irene Adler invites two young women with very distinctive but different backgrounds to investigate at the behest of the Crown Princess Alexandra, you just know there will be hi-jinx, danger, mystery, along maybe a love interest or 3. 17-year old Evaline Stoker is the half-sister of Bram Stoker; yes the one who wrote Dracula. She's been called into fighting vampires (Venator) for a living and follows in the footsteps of her great grand aunt Victoria Gardella. Although she's been blessed with super speed, strength, and healing, Evaline has a tendency to freeze at the sight of her own blood or someone else's. She's a very cocky individual who believes that she can rush into situations without any fear for her own safety.By all descriptions, Evaline is a beautiful society maven. She's been receiving invitations from single men looking for a wife and her sister in law is all but rushing her out the door so that she may be married and be on her own. That idea is so London during the Victorian era. I mean, heaven help us all that there shouldn't be strong, independent women who don't need men to support and hold them down, while controlling them like slaves. ::cough:: sorry, hair ball.17-year old Mina Holmes is a prodigy of sorts. Her Uncle is none other than Sherlock Holmes and her father is famous in his own right. She's got the same inquisitive mindset and doesn't really care what society thinks about her plain Jane appearance or the fact that she avoids London’s society altogether. She prefers to spend hours in her lab examining different sorts of evidence and creating things while using her own brand of inquisitiveness and logic in order to find answers to mysteries. She also carries a steam stream gun. I had a bit of a problem with Mina at times because her ego knows no boundaries. She in such a hurry to prove to others that she doesn’t need anyone to help her, that she falls flat on her face. But, in the end, the partnership with Evaline should be interesting to follow as the series goes along.I know you are all asking yourselves about the romance since Gleason is widely known for her steamy sex scenes. Since this is a young adult novel, I’m hoping it’s not rushed into, but explored slowly. The Clockwork Scarab actually introduces three men that cross paths with Mina and Evaline while they are batting the mysterious villain.There is Inspector Ambrose Grayling who keeps bumping into Mina at the most inopportune times. Whether or not this means that he actually likes her, or thinks she’s a wicked pain in the arse, remains to be seen.The next character is Dylan Eckhart who is somewhat of a time traveler by mistake. I really liked Dylan since he comes from 2016 and is American who has to restrain himself from saying too much about the future. I liked that he’s strangely enthusiastic about being back in 1889 where he meets Sherlock Holmes, and Dr. Watson, as well as Bram Stoker. I would go as far as to say that he is the most interesting male character introduced.The last character calls himself Pix. I think the chemistry between Pix and Evaline, definitely needs to be explored a bit more. He is such a different bred in comparison to the cockiness of Evaline.Obviously, since this is book # 1 in the series, not all answers are wrapped up. It will be interesting to see in what direction Gleason goes in the sequel which will be released in the Fall of 2014.*Recvd via Edelweiss 05/03/2013* Expected publication: September 17th 2013 by Chronicle Books

  • Belinda G
    2019-04-13 02:24

    DNF 50%I couldn't finish this, which is such a pity. I was totally willing to suspend my disbelief that the sister of Bram Stoker and the daughter of Mycroft Holmes (who is obviously purely fictional) could possibly team up in a steampunk London. It isn't even explained (up to the 50% mark) how this team could even exist.It felt like there were too many aspects being thrown in.. so far:-murder mystery-Sherlock/Mycroft Holmes + Bram Stoker relatives+ Irene Adler-vampire hunting-time travel-insta-love-love triangle-steampunk-Egyptian mythologyYou'd think with all that going on, there would be something interesting to keep me going... I can't find it. I'm totally bored with this, which is a shame. I'm normally willing to finish books that I don't really enjoy, just to see what happens at the end, particularly if they're on the mysterious side like this is, but I just don't care enough to bother right now. I feel a bit bad about it...There's so much wrong with the setting as well... I'm not a steampunk reader at all, so maybe it's part of that, but there's absolutely no way a woman of society could go wandering the streets of London (especially Whitechapel!) alone at night.Don't call an hour glass an "old fashioned timekeeper" or whatever it was. It's a freaking hourglass, tell it like it is.This also featured the most protracted arm wrestle ever. I suppose it was something to do with sexual tension but by halfway I didn't care anymore.The couple of pages used to describe a dress, to the point that it was nearly becoming contradictory and I couldn't picture it anymore, but could picture the dress described in a couple of sentences. There's a point where it's overdoing it, and this description went there... and I usually really like descriptive texts!"I would walk across a bed of nails for him"... ah, you lie on the bed of nails, you walk across hot coals. Sorry girl, that got a huge eye roll from me.Other terminology really didn't fit the time period or setting, like telling Dylan to "wash up a bit"... To me, she's asking him to wash the bloody dishes, not wash himself. Oh, and the amount of words that would never have been uttered by women of Mina and Eveline's class, like "bloody" and "blooming"- not much of a curse today, but in the 19th Century they were. The utter bitchiness of Eveline Stoker. She was really, really getting on my nerves, particularly by repeatedly calling Mina a "brain-beak". I assume the beak part is in reference to her nose, which is described as long and sharp. It's not her fault she's cleverer than you and has a big nose, geez mate. So... uh. Nah, I didn't like it. It had promise and it could have been really good, but it didn't feel right to me at all.

  • Aimee Meester
    2019-04-16 09:36

    So. Many. Mixed feelings. Now, I write YA steampunk mystery, so I was super interested in reading this one! I've never found anything like it before. However, it kind of fell flat for me. *sad face* Things I Didn't like 1. The writing. It might just be a personal thing, but it really didn't work for me - it felt like the author was working really hard to sound like it was 19th century style writing in first person, and all it came across was awkward. There was a lot of passive writing and so much description, it was hard to slog through at first. There were a lot of details that I didn't think were necessary. 2. The characters. Ughhh. A novel with two heroines? I'm all for that! But they sounded exactly the same, and neither of them grew or really became friends - they spent the whole time arguing and being frustrated with each other's faults and didn't ever get over any of it. Not. Cool. Also, there wasn't much variation between their two voices, and I didn't get a huge idea of who either of them was. I know I didn't like Miss Holmes - she was too stuck-up and never got over it. 3. Time travel??? There's a boy from the future who comes in and I honestly didn't understand why he was there. What does time travel have to do with it at all? He doesn't contribute to the plot, except to be attractive. NO THANKS. Things I Did Like1. The steampunkiness! I loveeeee steampunk with a burning passion and this was lovely. I wish we'd seen more of it because it was a super cool steampunk London world. 2. I did like Pix. His accent was hard to read but he was very sarcastic and honestly, I cared way more about him than the rest of them. He was hilarious. Overall, not really for me, but it was an interesting light read.

  • Noelia Alonso
    2019-03-29 04:30

    One of my main resolutions for 2016 is to accept that if I'm not enjoying a book, then it is also okay to not finish it and let go. I don't like to DNF because what if the book gets better? but I've noticed that during the last two years or so every time I forced myself to finish a book, I got into a weird reading mood afterwards. Sadly, this will be a DNF for me. I thought the idea of the story was gonna be amazing. I mean, the niece of Sherlock Holmes and the sister of Bram Stoker together? Yes, please! However, the writing style wasn't what I was expecting and it didn't pull me into the story whatsoever. And the characters were the tell-not-show kind of type which isn't something I enjoy. I don't want them to tell me who they are or the abilities they have; I want them to show me through their actions, not their thoughts. I just don't wanna waste my time convicing myself that maybe the whole thing will get better.

  • Patsy
    2019-03-30 09:23

    Date Read: January 2016This is my1sttime reading it.Rating: 3.5 stars. Review:There wasn't anything bad about this but there wasn't anything exceptionally good either. It was a very fun read, it read like a children's book but had some subject mature that was too mature for children. The setting and world building were really great, the characters were all likable and interesting, and the plot was cool too. I really enjoyed the references to the famous stories in this book, I thought I was going to be cringing but it was done pretty well actually. Everything about this was just really fun and constantly exciting, and I enjoyed myself the whole time.

  • Alicia
    2019-03-26 08:18

    Holy. crap. Loved it! As with all of Ms. Gleeson' s novels I absolutely devoured this story. It actually went by too fast, and I'm sure there is criticism to be found somewhere there, but it was just too freakin fun to not totally love.Also, I adored how Mina narrated in a similar fashion to Sherlock Holms. Siuch fun to read. And the descriptions of those steampunk outfits? I die. Oh! And I did NOT see the tie in to the Gardella vampire slayer series coming but zomg I loved it!!!! I have a feeling I know what is coming for Miss Stroker and I cannot wait to find out. All in all, this is a fantastic first foray into YA by my most favorite of authors. I couldn't be happier!!!