Lucy Weston wakes up from a compelling dream – to find herself in a coffin with a stake through her heart. She claws her way out, and, unable to understand who or what she is, survives as an outcast until she comes across the manuscript of Dracula and recognizes a distorted version of her own story. She heads to London to search out Bram Stoker and find the truth about herself. However, this only leads her further into a hidden world where humans and vampires have been keeping a fragile peace for centuries. But now, the technological advances of this steampunk Victorian age and an increasingly totalitarian government threaten to tip the balance – and Lucy discovers that she has been created to somehow prevent the mutual destruction of the two civilizations.
Apart from Dracula itself, I’m not a fan of vampire stories, so it took me a short while to accept the conventions of the genre. However, once I got past this, I found myself pulled into Lucy’s story. Cornwall’s plot is compelling and her prose well-crafted; she also avoids the extremes of violence and sensuality so common in vampire novels. I enjoyed Incarnation and would definitely read the implied sequel.