Pape continues her Gaslight Chronicles with the seventh installment, Dragons & Dirigibles. Though not as action-packed as previous entries — the romance takes precedent over the plot — Pape still delivers an engaging story filled with mystery and intrigue. Against the backdrop of a small coastal town, our hero and heroine match wits as personal and societal expectations are rocked to the core. While the suspense threaded throughout will keep readers guessing, the conflict could have and should have been more central to the narrative.

When Melody MacKay, a college-educated engineer and employee of the Order, crashes her one-man dirigible on the lawn of the Earl of Blackwell, she never expects to become embroiled in a mystery and a scandal — or a romance. Victor Arrington, a former ship’s captain, came home when his brother and wife died, leaving him the title and guardianship of his 10-year-old niece, Emma. Unable to locate a ring of smugglers infiltrating his estate, Victor is initially suspicious of Melody. Personal issues and his own expectations about women have Victor struggling to keep his attraction to Melody at arm’s length. But that becomes impossible when the two come up with a plan to expose the smugglers — a plan that requires them to pretend they are engaged. As Victor, Melody and a few helpful friends move closer to discovering the person behind the smuggling ring, Victor must decide if he can accept Melody for who she is, or let her go forever. (CARINAPRESS.COM, dl $3.99)
Reviewed by: 
Tori Benson