Review: How to Marry a Werewolf by Gail Carriger

Reviewed by Sara

How to Marry a Werewolf is a novella that takes place after the events of Gail Carriger’s popular Parasol Protectorate series. The novella can technically be read as a standalone although there are some elements that might be a bit lost on a reader new to the world Carriger has meticulously built. However, the story and characters are written with enough depth and explanation that anyone with should be able to lose themselves in this fantastic story.

As the story begins, we meet Bostonian Faith Wigglesworth, who, after causing a scandal, has been banished to the British Isles with one job, she is to find herself a werewolf to marry. In America, the supernaturals are barely tolerated and in many cases viewed as abominations. Faith is being punished by a family that it is immediately clear are horrible.

Things are different across the pond though. Faith finds herself immediately embraced by her sweet British cousins, taken under the wing of the local werewolf Alpha and becomes the darling of the ton. As it happens, supernaturals such as werewolves are at the top of London society’s food chain and a prize catch for any miss on the marriage mart. None are more desirable than the gruff and intimidating Gamma of the London pack, Major Channing Channing of the Chesterfield Channings. Faith is inexplicably drawn to Major Channing as he, much to his own befuddlement and consternation, is drawn to Faith. Both will have to overcome their pasts and, in Faith’s case, a horrible family to find their way to love and marriage.

Poorly written Steampunk can too easily come across like hastily put together Steampunk cosplay, vaguely historic looking, but with added gears and steam power to make it Steampunk-y. Gail Carriger is one of the best Steampunk authors I’ve ever read. I’m fairly certain that for her Steampunk is a lifestyle choice more than just a genre choice. As a result of her commitment, her books and novellas seamlessly incorporate the technologies, society and whimsy of Steampunk with the history and morals of Victorian England and elements of Paranormal Romance. The writing in How to Marry a Werewolf continues this tradition and is as cheeky as a Monty Python sketch, while still managing to capture the heartbreak of both Faith and Major Channing’s past. Each descriptor, every interaction, seems perfectly selected; I just couldn’t get enough of the writing and commitment to genre.

The characters of Faith and Major Channing are as well-developed and fleshed out as the plot. Sometimes in novellas writers struggle to create characters of depth, not so here. From the very first chapter it’s easy to love Faith who is clearly loathed by her parents for her indiscretions and differentness. However it’s Faith’s same unconventionalism that has everyone, including Major Channing falling in love with her. I felt totally invested in Faith and enjoyed her journey to come into her own. Likewise, watching Major Channing who is admittedly rough around the edges, discover that his heart isn’t as hard as he thought and read about him softening for Faith was wonderful.

I am not a person that uses the word delightful often, but it is the first adjective that comes to mind when considering How to Marry a Werewolf. Check out this novella!

Rating: A+

*Purchased with funds earned through toil and hardship at the hands of an unrelenting master.

Click to purchase: Amazon

How to Marry a Werewolf
by Gail Carriger
Release Date: May 13, 2018

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