3 1/2 stars. As romance readers, we’re often protected from having to suffer too much vicariously. Usually our heroes and heroines are rescued just in the nick of time. This story is an exception… terrible, terrible things have happened to its heroine, and although not graphic, it’s very dark and painful to read.Former ballerina Callie wakes up to find herself in an alien and monstrous body. A brutal attack by men searching for her spy husband left her minus her legs and an eye; now clockwork prosthetics and nanoagents have made her a bionic woman - stronger, but very different. As Callie learns to live with her new self, her husband Jasper must also learn to live with a very changed wife and with his own sense of guilt.This was an interesting exploration of how use of the prosthetics common to a steampunk universe might play out in people’s real lives, including the fact that Callie’s surgeries leave her indebted to those who paid for it. It was a powerful story, but I thought things moved a little too fast. The depth of the horror Callie faced and the difficulty of the adjustment for both seemed larger than could be encompassed in a novella, especially with time given to a mystery subplot.