Thursday, February 2, 2017

SFRB Recommends 67: Mission: Improper by Bec McMaster

Entire families have gone missing in the East End. When Caleb Byrnes receives an invitation to join the Company of Rogues as an undercover agent pledged to protect the crown, he jumps at the chance to find out who, or what, is behind the disappearances. Hunting criminals is what the darkly driven blue blood does best, and though he prefers to work alone, the opportunity is too good to resist.

The problem? He’s partnered with Ingrid Miller, the fiery and passionate verwulfen woman who won a private bet against him a year ago. Byrnes has a score to settle, but one stolen kiss and suddenly the killer is not the only thing Byrnes is interested in hunting.

Soon they’re chasing whispered rumours of a secret project gone wrong, and a monster that just might be more dangerous than either of them combined. The only way to find out more is to go undercover among the blue blood elite… But when their hunt uncovers a mysterious conspiracy, Byrnes and Ingrid must set aside their age-old rivalry if they have any chance at surviving a treacherous plot.

McMaster's Blue Blood Conspiracy series takes off from her London Steampunk books, in which she created a detailed and believable steampunk world. Here, the paranormal is scientific. Experiments regarding vampirism vividly recall Victorian England and the way the Industrial Revolution created monster novel classics.

The story's strength is its characters. Byrnes and Miller make a great team, their coworkers make me want to read more, and the villains are fascinating creatures. I also enjoyed the exploration of how the backroom politicking of the nobles affects the agents: people have to learn to work together to do the really heavy lifting.

Author site: Bec McMaster - Romance in a World of its Own

Recommendation by Lee Koven.

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