Book Reviews

Book Review: The Spiritglass Charade by Colleen Gleason

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I purchased a copy of this book for my own enjoyment, and with no expectation of a review.


The Spiritglass Charade is the second book of Colleen Gleason’s Stoker and Holmes series, featuring the daughter of Mycroft Holmes, and the sister of Bram Stoker. This adventure has the duo looking into a case of purported spiritual contact. They are asked to investigate a medium, Mrs Yingling, to see if she is taking advantage of a young woman by way of fake séances.


Miss Willa Ashton believes she is being contacted by her deceased mum, regarding her missing brother. Evaline and Mina discover more than they bargain for when they learn this case is linked to a whole series of missing persons, and to the return of vampires to London.


Fun stuff- I enjoy this neat world, a few shifts over from ours. It is bright and vivid in my mind’s eye. My favourite parts were when Pix showed up. He’s still my most favourite character, and he seems the most authentic of them all. Plus, he still seems like a young Mark Sheppard to me 😛 I loved the case they were investigating, and how it played out.


The not so fun stuff- I was really hoping to see some inner growth with both Mina and Evaline, and a maturing of their partnership. Instead, they come across as catty with one another, despite proof they can work well together. Neither is willing to relent and open themselves, or to really be open-minded. I really hope this changes with the next book. There are also words/references used that I can (usually) suss out the meaning too, but dictionary searching yields no clues. ‘Drassy’ to describe dim light. A flimsy night ‘rail’ to describe a nightshirt or nightshift. Seriously, wtff? ‘Para-Natural’ instead of paranormal, or supernatural, or preternatural, which might be the best choice of all. That really bothers me, as does excessive use of capitals (see above example). It seems quite unnecessary, and somewhat distracting to the story.


All that being said, I intend to read the next book in the series. Here’s hoping the relationship between Mina and Evaline evolves beyond the catty stage. Both of them could use a friend and confidante. I’m looking forward to more of the charming Pix, and hoping for more insight into Dylan’s situation, which was glossed over and shunted to the side in this book.


If you enjoy alternate history, steampunk, or Sherlock variants, check out The Spiritglass Charade by Colleen Gleason.


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