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Poison or Protect by Gail Carriger
Published: 2016
Format: Ebook
Source: Amazon/B&N/Gumroad

Poison or Protect is the first novella in Gail Carriger’s Delightfully Deadly novella series. The series is a spin off of her YA Finishing School series. This story follows one of Madame Geraldine’s girls, Preshea Villentia (Buss), as she is pursuing her life in espionage after finishing at Madame Geraldine’s.

After school Preshea has found herself a four-time widow with a title, considerable wealth, and a nickname, the Mourning Star. Now the Mourning Star has another mission. This mission will require her to attend a multi-week house party in the country side. Enter Captain Ruthven, a handsome, gentle Scotsman blocking her path. Now the true test is if Preshea is willing to risk her heart or the job.

Gail Carriger has quickly become one of my all time favorite authors. Her stories are all compelling, her characters are memorable and relatable, and her world is engrossing. I’m absolutely in love with her frank writing style and her dedication to the fashion and customs in her stories.

This story definitely does not stray from all that I expect a Gail Carriger story to be and I’m so glad. It’s a pretty quick read, which can be a nice change of pace. I often find longer books, Carriger’s Parasol Protectorate series, to leave me with a difficulty remembering how we got from beginning to end (not that that’s necessarily a bad thing). This was a refreshingly short story that still managed to tell and entire story.

The cast of characters, old and new, were definitely great in their diversity and their comedy. The story itself was perfect, not drawn out longer than needed but not rushed to fit the “novella” restraints. If you like Carriger and/or liked the Finishing School Series, take a moment to catch back up with Preshea and you will not regret it!

5/5 stars!

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