The Mysterious Lady Law by Robert Appleton

In a time of grand airships and steam-powered cars, the death of a penniless young maid will hardly make the front page. But part-time airship waitress and music hall dancer Julia Bairstow is shattered by her sister's murder. When Lady Law, the most notorious private detective in Britain, offers to investigate the case pro bono, Julia jumps at the chance—even against the advice of Constable Al Grant, who takes her protection surprisingly to heart.
Lady Law puts Scotland Yard to shame. She's apprehended Jack the Ripper and solved countless other cold-case crimes. No one knows how she does it, but it's brought her fortune, renown and even a title. But is she really what she claims to be—a genius at deducting? Or is Al right and she is not be trusted?
Julia is determined to find out the truth, even if it means turning sleuth herself—and turning the tables on Lady Law... 
Publication Date: January 31st, 2011
Publisher: Carina Press
Country: United States of America
ISBN13: 9781426891151
Original Language: English
Age Group: Young Adult
Genre: Supernatural/Paranormal, Romance, Mystery, Steampunk
Source: ARC recieved through NetGalley (a long time ago).
Buy the Book: Amazon
Lootability: It's a blunt object hit someone with it.
The Mysterious Lady Law is a steampunk novella by Robert Appleton. Julia, part time waitress, part time dancer, heads home to find her beloved sister Georgy has been murdered. Georgy's one time employer, the notorious Lady Law, with over 600 solved crimes under her belt, offers her services pro bono to solve the case. Julia agrees after her 'friend' from Scotland Yard, and hearty disapprover of Lady Law, Al Grant tells her their investigation is going nowhere.

What I Liked: Julia is a sweetheart; she is clever, hard working, loyal and passionate. All she wants is to find her sisters murderer and maybe, to find love and happiness along the way. 
I also loved Holly, he was a real sweetheart and I enjoyed his contributions to the story. He reminded me a little of my own Grandfather.
I enjoyed the story, Lady Law was mysterious and I was genuinely curious about her, and about Georgy's murder but I had a few problems with it all.

What I Didn't Like: Not a lot made sense to me. I followed the reasoning and explanations of Lady Law's 'intuition', and Julia and Al's love story feeling like I was reading the abridged copy of the story. Everything happened quickly, without much background and virtually spontaneously. It was a short story, with a decent idea, but it felt like three different things being tied together with the wrong coloured shoelace. 
All of a sudden one character has a complete turn about and everything falls sideways. As for the worked, it fit in with the steampunk theme but it ultimately felt like an episode of Star Trek were their adventure is explained away by yet another temporal disturbance.
It's a blunt object, hit someone with it.
I think this book could really interest a lot of people, but I think it suffered as a short story. I think a large page count would have given Appleton a chance to really bulk up the story and go somewhere wonderful. I plan on giving another one of his books a try one day. 

P.S I've tried to be witting with what I name my rating system, but calling someone's book kindling seems mean. I'm not going to change it because it fits the theme and will suit upcoming renovations, but I feel a little guilty. 
I'd like to point out that I'm not disparaging Mr Appleton's book, just giving my opinion. I will occasionally post low rating reviews, and I'm sorry if that upsets people, but that is my duty as a reviewer. To give my honest opinion on a book.

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