Study in Darkness by Emma Jane Holloway

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I am in two minds about this second book in the  Baskerville Affair series.
The first half is extremely drawn out. Every movement and scene moves along at what seems to be a snails pace. It is a shame because the second half has twice as much as what the first part lacks. It is also much better than the first book from a plot and character perspective.
Tobias was a huge turn ff in the first book. Snotty, selfish and used to getting his own way. He was never the perfect fit for Evalina anyway. I enjoyed finally seeing another side to him in this book. His interactions with Alice later on in the story are indicative of a character who has evolved.
Evalina has to come to terms with some unsettling insights. She is given the opportunity to learn a little more about a certain type of magick. She becomes aware of a subconscious need for control and thirst for more in regards to the darker side of the powers. Others recognize the traits in her but Evalina finds it hard to accept this new aspect of her persona.
Holloway has quite cleverly managed to fit one of the most notorious serial-killers of the 20th century into the story without it being completely far-fetched. From a Steampunk point of view it is actually superbly done.
What I would like to see is the author creating a whole book with the pace, detailed descriptions, solid characters and plot- weaving of the second half of this book throughout an entire book.There needs to be more balance, which was lacking in this one. Her Steampunk and ideas are sound and intriguing and certainly worth the read.
I received a copy of this book for my review.

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