Thursday, September 20, 2012

Book Review: Incarnation

Author: Emma Cornwall
Publication Date: September 18, 2012
Publisher: Gallery Books

In the steampunk world of Victorian London, a beautiful vampire seeks out the author of Dracula–to set the record straight . . . If one is to believe Bram Stoker’s legendary vampire tale, Lucy Weston is Dracula’s most wanton creation, a sexual creature of the night who preys on innocent boys. But the real-life Lucy is nothing like her fictional counterpart—and she demands to know why the Victorian author deliberately lied. With Stoker’s reluctant help, she’s determined to track down the very fiend who transformed her—from the sensual underworld where humans vie to become vampires, to a hidden cell beneath a temple to madness, and finally into the glittering Crystal Palace where death reigns supreme.

Haunted by fragmentary memories of her lost life and love, Lucy must battle her thirst for blood as she struggles to stop a catastrophic war that will doom vampires and humans alike. Ultimately, she must make a choice that illuminates for her—and for us—what it means to be human.
Dracula is one of my favorite books/movies to be rewritten and given new interpretation to over and over again. The cover obviously struck me because even though I could never pull off red hair, I think it is beautiful! I was really the most anxious to see how this woman, Lucy Weston, would fit into the story. I really hoped, going off the front cover, that I liked her personality as much as I liked her look. The background in the picture on the cover also caught my eye and overall I thought the colors and scenery fit nicely into a book solely about vampires.

I was impressed with Cornwall’s depictions of her make-believe vampire world. Vampires are overly analyzed in our literary world today, but Cornwall’s interpretation was almost believable in a sense. The scenery, especially The Crystal Palace, was very versatile and I could grasp the steampunk side of this world as the descriptions floated off the stage. She did something different with vampires that hasn’t been done yet and I really appreciated her aim as a writer. She made a bold move writing about vampires but I salute her because she executed it down to the final paragraph.
Lucy Weston wins character of the month. I love her charm, boldness, and most of all her audacity. She takes the cake. I wanted to be her best friend. Her adventure could spread across a series and I am almost wondering if we may see more of this whimsical world! I would have liked to have seen more action from her character. I felt that her internal conflict was not always executed externally in the best way for readers to understand. ( I hope that makes sense; my inner English major is starting to surface) I would have liked to see more of the seductress that we all know the Lucy Weston to be in Dracula. Her character could have pulled that off so well!
I have already mentioned that the steampunk aspect of this was written well. I also believe that the action was paced especially well. I am a reader that is easily lost in the flow of action and if you, as an author, do not keep me entertained you will quickly lose me. Here I believe that some of the best scenes were action. Cornwall has a knack for writing them and they were all very strong. I would definitely trade the action for romance, however. I did not like that there was just not a lot of it. I believe that romance could have maybe helped develop Lucy’s character a little more since she is a newly turned vampire.
I liked the book and I am eagerly awaiting news for a sequel because I believe that there definitely has to be one!
***An e-copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers through Edelweiss in exchange for an unbiased review***


  1. I love the idea of a book that works with Dracula (an amazing book in my opinion). This sounds like a really interesting read, I'm a little disappointed to hear that Lucy isn't the seductress we all know though. Great review, Chelsey!

  2. I am really looking forward to reading this book. i love steampunk and vampire together. they seem to work really well. thanks for the great review!

  3. I really like this book and would love to finally finish it but i'm taking my time to take in the wonderful writing. good review, you've captured it all.

  4. Hey there, I'm visiting because I saw that you're joining in with the Reaping Me Softly book tour, which I'm also participating in =) I've followed, and I look forward to reading your posts! =D
    I have this one to read too - especially interested to see what I'll make of it after your review.