Mummy trouble – Gail Carriger’s Changeless (Parasol Protectorate 2)

Cover image of Changeless

Cover image of Changeless

The last time that I wrote about Alexia Tarabotti (now Lady Maccon), she was thwacking Major Canning for his impudence. Though to be fair, he had not been told she was Lady Maccon.

Lord Maccon deserts his home early one morning in Changeless and heads off to his former pack in Scotland, leaving a somewhat miffed Lady Maccon. Her temper is not helped by the appearance of the Woolsey pack on her front lawn. Beginning with ordering the soldiers to the back of the house, she is determined to stamp some order to the proceedings.

Following her husband’s request, she goes Madame Lefoux’s emporium where she comes by the most divine parasol with a range of armaments. It is, however, not enough and she has to go to Scotland via dirigible (and is so rudely nearly killed).

Her husband’s earlier pack, abandoned after a mutiny, have returned home from Egypt but are cursed. And leaderless.

Whilst restoring order and a certain civility (tempered with the realisation that her maid was a vampire spy), Lady Maccon discovers that she is pregnant. This causes Lord Maccon to go ever so slightly ballistic and casts her out.

Carriger plays on the idea of the mummy in both popular culture and an archaeological sense. It casts a shadow over the proceedings with the fascination taking over from the reality of the object. One wonders whether she is looking at the continuing hold of the ancient over the present and, in dissolving the object in acid, is making a break with that hold. The mummy is less object of reverence and eternal life than a magical object to be coo-ed over or feared in the Hammer sense of the myth.

Carriger seems as if she is aware of the mythos but is busy creating her own sense and space.

Further posts about Gail Carriger‘s books.

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