Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Victorian Scoundrel by Stephanie Burkhart - Review and Giveaway

This review is in conjunction with a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Stephanie will be awarding a $25.00 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

It's 2011 and compressed natural gas has taken over from the coal producing steam machines of the Victorian Age. Alice Windsor, Princess of York, follows her mischief-making cousin, Edmund of Wales, back to 1851 where Prince Albert is hosting Britain's Great Exhibition.

Alice soon finds herself over her head in trouble. Edmund is determined to help Prince Albert build a dirigible and the prime minister appears intent in preventing her from stopping Edmund. Alice knows it's too early for the massive flying machine to take to the air. Complicating matters is the passionate Grayson Kentfield, Earl of Swinton. Alice can't stop her pulse from pounding when she's near him.

Can Alice give her heart to a man from the past while working to stop Edmund from changing history?

My review:

What a fun read. Stephanie Burkhart has brought us a time travel romance that combines elements of steampunk (love the idea of scent-mail). It's not a long book and is an easy evening's read.

The main characters, Alice and Edmund, are cousins who are actually more like brother and sister. When Alice discovers Edmund going back in time, she follows him to try and keep him out of trouble, because where Edmund goes, trouble seems to follow. And, she finds out that what Edmund is attempting could very well change the future/their present so Alice has to try and stop him. Add to that the complication that both Alice and Edmund fall in love durint their time in the 1850s and you have the essence of the story.

There were some very neat elements of steampunk scattered through the story-- the Victorian age Alice and Edmund find themselves in is just a little different from what historical England not to mention the current time for Alice and Edmund where things are powered by compressed natural gas and glasses exist to help dyslexia.

I was hoping for a little more characterization -- I liked the characters, but I didn't feel like I connected with these characters as much as I have with other characters the author has penned. It was more like reading about what was happening to them rather than being drawn into and becoming a part of it myself. However, this is just the first book of a series, so hopefully we will see the characters grow and develop in the future books.

I could easily see this book as a series--it reminded me in tone a bit of the original Wild Wild West--fun banter between the main characters, some interesting inventions, and a problem to solve. I'm looking forward to the rest of the series. 3.5 flower rating: This was a good book. I liked it.

Enjoy an excerpt:

She nibbled on her lower lip, a curious habit she had. When she was indecisive, perhaps? Then she drew the necklace over her head, giving it to him. He placed the coin flat in the palm of his hand, and let the chain dangle through his fingers. It was bronze or brass, with a strange sequence of numbers and letters. He furrowed his brow. Alice bent over and used her finger to push her glasses firmly back onto the bridge of her nose.

"It's some type of alpha-numeric code," Grayson mused out loud.

Alice looked on, a murky expression on her face. "Perhaps."

Grayson looked up. "I've seen a similar code on the datamancers they introduced in Parliament."

"What's a datamancer?" she asked.

He tried not to get lost in those soulful cerulean eyes of hers. "You don't know what a datamancer is?"


"It thinks for itself--"

"Grayson, what's in your hand?"

Grayson and Alice turned in the direction of the door. Sir John briskly walked toward them escorted by a soldier and another gentleman Grayson recognized as the prince's secretary.

About the Author:
Stephanie Burkhart is a 911 dispatcher for LAPD. She was born and raised in Manchester, New Hampshire. After serving 11 years in the US Army she currently calls Castaic, California her home. Stephanie was married in Denmark in 1991 and has two young sons. She adores chocolate, is addicted to coffee and enjoys early morning walks. She's also an assistant den leader for her son's Cub Scout den and is a Boy Scout mom. She writes paranormal, contemporary, and steampunk romance and has two children's books published with 4RV Publishing.

WEBSITE: http://www.stephanieburkhart.com
TWITTER: http://twitter.com/StephBurkhart
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/StephanieBurkhartAuthor
GOOD READS: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4031660.Stephanie_Burkhart
YOU TUBE CHANNEL: http://www.youtube.com/user/botrina?feature=mhee
PINTEREST: http://pinterest.com/sgburkhart/

Buy the book at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, All Romance eBooks, Desert Breeze Publishing, or Kobo. a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Thank you so much for having me here today. I'm glad you enjoyed the book. :) Question for your readers: (and authors!) What attracts you to read a book: The cover or the book ...or something else? I'd love to hear your thoughts.

    Steph Burkhart
    Romance Under the Moonlight

  2. Hi Stephanie! A variety of things can attract me to a book. The cover, excerpt, blurb... but also the review. I avoided on 'Fifty Shades of Gray' because... I don't know, something told me it was overrated. A few months ago, I decided to check out the reviews on Amazon. I was surprised about how many negative reviews it received despite all the hype. After reading the negative reviews, I decided I never wanted to read it, the reviews can have a huge impact I think. I've also spoke with friends and co-workers who confirmed my suspicions - they did not enjoy the book either. Interestingly, several of them still want to see the movie, though!

    1. Collenga, thank you for the reply. I admit the cover catches my attention, then I'll check out the blurb. Depending on the book and if I haven't read the author before, I'll read the reviews, too. I read 50 Shades. It was all right. Nothing too special.


  3. The cover attracts first of all - then the blurb - then the first page.


So... inquiring minds want to know: what do you think?