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August 3, 2014

Steampunk Sundays: Tempered by Karina Cooper

Series: St. Croix Chronicles 4
Format: eGalley
Release Date: February 10, 2014
Publisher: Carina Press
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Genre: Steampunk | Adult
Forced out of London's coal-blackened streets, Cherry St. Croix is faced with her most difficult undertaking yet: sobriety.

At long last, my guardian, the enigmatic Mr. Oliver Ashmore, has revealed himself—and his order is clear: I am to be dried out at once, regardless of my wishes.

I loathe the country estate I am imprisoned within. Footsteps follow me, voices call for me, and my sanity wavers. In my fevered dreams, I am haunted by those I failed, while waking proves no protection from the ghosts of my reckless past. The craving for laudanum plagues me. I require a distraction.

To unravel the alchemical mysteries of my mother's family, I must rely on Ashmore's tutelage. I am lured to the art and drawn by the secrets my guardian possesses. Yet the deeper I delve, the more I believe that something dreadful disturbs these haunted corridors. In my madness, I fear that what it wants most...is me.


I'm so sorry for posting this late today. School started and it's tax free weekend so I've been running around, getting school stuff and what-not for my student. Summer is officially over in my neck 'o the woods and we're all in school mode again. So I'm going to make this quick because I so love TEMPERED and I want to gush about it.

On to TEMPERED!

Oh Karina Cooper, I so love how you make love with words! I've read a lot of Steampunk and there's only a handful of authors who managed to not only capture the spirit of the genre but the time period as well. So aside from the Victorian setting, costumes, social elements, the language is very different back then and it's the latter that has me enthralled in St. Croix Chronicles. From the first page, you know that you've traveled back in time similar to when one is reading historical romances. 

Cherry St. Croix's world was turned upside down in Corroded, and TEMPERED is both an ending and a start of something new. Cherry's always been a pariah among the ton because of who her parents are, her mother was a beaut who became an outcast because she married Mad (scientist) St. Croix, both died when Cherry was young and she never really knew of them up until Mad St. Croix came back in Tarnished and tried to kill Cherry so he can revive his wife. This arc came to full circle here and finally Cherry discovered the true nature of her parents and they are not only dysfunctional, they are evil! Cherry's mother reminds me of Arcadia Bell's parents, demented and blinded by their lust for power and immortality and I hope we've seen the last of them. 

On that same note, Cherry's also an opium addict and she was forced into Victorian-style rehab thanks to her mysterious guardian, Oliver Ashmore, whose connection to her family runs deep. I was hopeful that Ashmore will be the antidote to Hawke, The Menagerie's Ringmaster and Cherry's first love, he seemed like an upstanding gentleman at first but we soon learn that that's not the case. This arc about Ashmore was interesting, it involved a lot of alchemy which I love because what's Steampunk without the Aether and Ashmore has a wealth of knowledge about alchemy. Anyway, Cherry's rehab stint had me wanting to give her a shower and a hug. Now that her thoughts and emotions are not dulled by opium, it's evident to see that Cherry's hurting real bad and grieving hard for her past life. TEMPERED is a turning point for her and I want to see how these tragedies changed her moving forward.

The series arc is shifting somewhat because of the devastation that Cherry's had in her life which definitely changed her. I'm excited to read Engraved because I miss Micajah Hawke and now that Cherry's back on her feet, she's got a few scores to settle and I'd like to know the extent of Cherry's wounds are. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned they say, Cherry's had enough betrayals in her life to make her lust for retribution and bitter. Personally I hope Cherry becomes a wrecking ball, she should start with her mother-in-law.








31 comments:

  1. It has been awhile since I have read a really good steampunk and this sounds really good!

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    1. She has a way with words that simply blows me away.

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  2. I am SOLD. I just wish there was more romance but I am guessing that'll start developing soon :P

    I am starting to dip my toes more into the steampunk genre so I am always on the lookout for recs.

    The parents don't sound fun though .-. ESPECIALLY if the mother is bat shit insane like Cady's mother...

    Anyway I am so glad you enjoyed this, Braine! :)

    Lovely review!

    Rashika @ The Social Potato

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    1. Oh there is romance, it was suspended here because of Cherry's issues. Micajah Hawks is swoon worthy, you should definitely try this.

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  3. I'm looking for a new Steampunk series to start because the last few installments in Bec McMaster's London Steampunk have only been so-so, and I'm thinking of dropping it. I'll have to read your other reviews first before deciding. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

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    1. You will love this, Cherry's like Chess & I wasn't in love with the last LS book either

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  4. The setting and the writing sounds wonderful.

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    1. It is! Cooper is an awesome periodic writer

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  5. Oh I heard great things about this series but I haven't tried it yet I should because it sounds great mainly after 4 books.

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    1. I love the character development, its real and gritty! Cherry's a delicious imperfect heroine to read

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  6. I didn't realize so many books were out for this series already! I have the first book, I actually met the author at ALAMW a year and a half ago. It sounds like I need to get busy reading!

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    1. Try it! I love the way she wrote this series, the way she puts the words together is just awesome!

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  7. Wow school is already back in. I have a month still for my kiddo but she is ready she and her little brother are fighting way too much. I just saw the newest release for this series when I was doing a Friday Forecast for the next three weeks and I was most curious. Sounds like a good indie series. I am going to check it out.

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    1. She has a PNR series too, not sure if you've tried it. This series of hers is the only one I'm following, I have no words except for it's written beyond well!

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  8. Ahhh you just keep reminding me that I need to read this series!!

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    1. Was it you who was reading McMaster? This one is slightly different because there's a series arc as opposed to McMaster's more episodic ones.

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  9. Great review Braine, This series sounds like another one that I'd enjoy! Cherry sounds like a fab character.

    Naomi @ Nomi’s Paranormal Palace

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    1. Oh she is, she's what I'd like to consider an anti-heroine.

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  10. I love her covers. I've got the first one *somewhere* in this house. #GoesHunting

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    1. I hope you find it! You'll appreciate the "language" she uses, it's very historical romance in terms of tone.

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  11. The kids in NE start back next week. This sounds like such a well developed series..I am adding it to my list. Good luck getting the kids settled.

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    1. Thanks, Kimba and I'm happy you added this :)

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  12. I skimmed your review because I haven't started this series yet. I love her other series. I have the first book, but I just need to read it.

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    1. I know she has a PNR one too, is that what you follow? I will eventually try that later on but for now, I'm so caught up with Cherry St. Croix!

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  13. Poor Cherry! I'm glad you're enjoying the series.

    We had tax-free weekend, but I avoided it. School started early for y'all. We hit it in two weeks.

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    1. I'm cheap so I can't let it slide LOL.

      Good for you! I hope the kids are excited, it'll be awfully quiet in your house though.

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  14. Tempered sounds amazing, Braine! Another series to add to my TBR for sure.

    WOW, how long is the summer vacation for your kids? Mine have eight weeks off, but they only started the first week of July, so we still have a while off before we have to get up early, do homework and generally just get back into a routine again.

    I hope the first week back will be great :)

    Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

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    1. We have maybe 2.5 months. Do you go back to school the same time they do?

      I'm glad you checked this out and added it to your TBR. I hope you get to try this soon :)

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  15. I've just put the first book on my wish list :)

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