I loved this book so much! Set in the modern world but with a twist; Victoria is still on the throne and is celebrating her 175th year, the aristocracy are vampires and werewolves with the lower classes being half breeds or humans. Then there are goblins, a mutation of all the others. The British Empire is still very much in effect except for the Americas and Canada which were conceded and of course, world history for the last 3 centuries is very different from our own.
Kate Locke managed to pack so much into God Save the Queen but it never felt too wordy or heavy on explanation as to how and why the world is at as it is. Electricity, computers, cars, motorbikes and mobile phones are all present but are a bit different than what we know. They are named in keeping with the setting and so well described, you could clearly envision it. The genetic side was just brilliant, the evolution of vampires, werewolves and goblins, starting from the bubonic plague. It was clearly laid out and a matter of fact part of life.
Our heroine is Alexandra Vardan, the half blooded daughter of an aristocrat and I absolutely love her. She’s feisty, intelligent and loves her siblings to the point she would walk happily into danger for them. As a member of the Royal Guard, it’s her duty to protect the aristocracy but as her youngest sister goes missing, Xandra has to go against everything she has been taught, if she has a chance to find her. What she finds is something that shocks her to her core and suddenly nothing is what it seems.
The pace of the book was exciting and fast but the few quieter periods were well timed and a much needed break for both reader and heroine! The plot was just phenomenal, I loved it all. I was actually sad when the book finished but only because I didn’t have the next one! I also liked how the romantic scenes were not played out in full, it left a lot to the imagination and it suited the story perfectly. And Vex, he is one sexy scottish wolf!
In terms of genre, I would put this book in Urban fantasy. It does have the twist of steampunk but the setting and language are modern. I liked how words and phrases had carried on from Victoria but became more modern. I am also stealing ‘hatters’!
God Save the Queen is a fantastic debut by Kate Locke and I highly recommend it! A fresh and wonderful voice to Urban Fantasy.