Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Review: These Ruthless Deeds by Tarun Shanker and Kelly Zekas

When I was approved to read These Ruthless Deeds by Swoon Books through NetGalley, I ordered book one, These Vicious Masks, to read as soon as possible. It was a good idea. Book #2 pretty much picks up where Book#1 leaves off,

Evelyn and Miss Grey are trying to find and help other people with powers. Things go awry as they try to rescue a young woman with telekinesis from an insane asylum. The Society of Aberrations steps in and helps to rescue them. In turn, the Society tries to recruit them.

Evelyn is seriously wary of the Society after events in book one with a rogue agent claiming to be working for the society, but engaging in repugnant acts on his own. While Captain Goode claims the society had nothing to do with the other's actions, Evelyn is still erring on the side of caution until she finds out there may be a way to help Mr. Braddock deal with his disastrous power of making those around him sick. This she thinks might be worth joining the Society.

Meanwhile, her parents have returned to London with money found by her father's accountant. It appears her reputation has been restored. A Lady Atherton comes forth with her son and suggests that Evelyn participates in the little season. And she appears to be involved with the Society of Aberrations as well.

Evelyn goes on missions for the society along with her friends and some of the other members of the Society. There are surprises in store both during the missions and aside from them.

Evelyn is as enjoyable as she was in the first book. She is caring, but snarky at times. She has a solid group of friends on which to rely. And there is a little bit of a love triangle between her, Mr. Kent, and Mr. Braddock. I enjoyed the characterization of her friends as well.

The pace of the book is faster than book one. It leads up to a major scene which both resolves some problems and introduces more, paving the way for a third book in the series.

Altogether, the book is well written. the emphasis is on the action rather than the romance. It still reads as book one advertises a bit like "Jane Austen meets the X-Men." There is fun, and there is tragedy. To say more would be spoilers.

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. I like the characters and the pacing as well as the mystery of just what the society is up to. There is also another mystery that becomes apparent after a while. I would recommend the book for people who enjoy a blend of science fiction/fantasy with their historical literature. A certain amount of suspension of disbelief is required, but not so much that it can't be done. I would recommend reading book one in the series before reading book two. And I am seriously looking forward to book three. The end of These Ruthless Deeds has a little bit of a cliffhanger to it. I want to see the situational troubles wrapped up and the interpersonal problems resolved.