Prudence (The Custard Protocol)
by Gail Carriger
Review by Gayle Surrette
Orbit Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9780316212243
Date: 17 March 2015 List Price $20.00 Amazon US / Amazon UK
Prudence 'Rue' Alessandra Maccon Akeldama is now out in society. She's been well trained by her adopted father Lord Akeldama (vampire), as well as by her birth parents Lord Maccon (werewolf) and Alexia Maccon (soulless). She's definitely lived up to the expectations of readers of the Parasol Protectorate as she embarks on the maiden voyage of the airship Spotted Custard to India to negotiate for tea for Lord Akeldama.
This is a second generation adventure with Rue's best friend, Primrose Tunstell, daughter of Alexia's best friend Ivy, Primrose's brother, Percy, and Quesnel Lefoux, the ward of Madame Lefoux. Time has passed and the relationships between the various characters are as complicated as you'd expect among these young adults.
Rue and her shipmates set aloft ahead of time to avoid scandal as Primrose did her good-bye visits in the wrong type of dress. Unfortunately, they soon learn that they also set off without a proper briefing. Thus adventure begins with our main characters often guessing at what they are supposed to do and trying to determine who is friend and who is foe. They also learn that there are more supernatural creatures than just werewolves and vampires.
While most of the party starts off thinking they are in control, they soon learn that they still have a lot to learn about life, relationship, politics, and the world.
This is an excellent start to the new series.