Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Phoenix Fantasy

If you wouldn't mind, please pop over to http://phoenixfantasyreviews.com/ for the mo, as that's where my dirigible is currently docked :) Thanks!

Friday, December 7, 2012

The Demi-Monde: Winter, Rod Rees

At last! An unusual read! If you're looking for a unique and ambitious blend of Cyberpunk, Steampunk, Historical, Dystopian, Sci-Fi, Fantasy madness, you HAVE to check this out;


The Demi-Monde is the most advanced computer simulation ever devised. Created to prepare soldiers for the nightmarish reality of urban warfare, it is a virtual world locked in eternal civil war. Its thirty million digital inhabitants are ruled by duplicates of some of history's cruellest tyrants: Reinhard Heydrich, the architect of the Holocaust; Beria, Stalin's arch executioner; Torquemada, the pitiless Inquisitor General; Robespierre, the face of the Reign of Terror. 

But something has gone badly wrong inside the Demi-Monde, and the US President's daughter has become trapped in this terrible world. It falls to eighteen-year-old Ella Thomas to rescue her, yet once Ella has entered the Demi-Monde she finds that everything is not as it seems, that its cyber-walls are struggling to contain the evil within and that the Real World is in more danger than anyone realises.

Rees has created such a fascinating premise here, and the novel more than lives up to its blurb. I've never read anything like this before, and I think Stephen Baxter's "Discworld's savage, noir cousin" quote is the most apt at describing what you can expect from the first novel in the Demi-Monde series. You get to explore a virtual reality world filled with Historical psychopaths, hurrah! And I think an extra hats off to Rees is needed here for the fact that he's not gone for the obvious figures, instead of the front men he's gone for the real architects behind some of the worst figures in our history, giving us characters with a truly terrifying mix of prejudice, intolerance, cruelty and genius. This one really puts the "punk" into Cyber/Steampunk, holding up a mirror to the ugliest aspects of humanity. It's both entertaining and soul destroying all at once.

Obviously with a cast of characters like this, it's going to be a novel filled with a blend of racism and sexism that you're not going to be used to reading. It's like being hit repeatedly over the head with a mallet. It works, but there's an element of repetition to it that does get tiring after a few hundred pages. We get explanations of the terms used in the demi-monde in many different ways, and often an explanation really isn't needed at all, the term and the context is enough. What you get on top of this is a blurb at the start of each chapter offering an explanation, an overt explanation in the narrative, a vocal explanation from one of the characters, and also...should you still be in any doubt, a glossary of terms at the back. It gets too much, and lessens the impact of what are really clever and sharp observations. Same goes for the endless Capitalisations To Make A Point. Honestly, we get it, you can stop now! for example, LessBienism, NuJus, HimPerialism, HerEticalism, to name just a few. For my money, if Rees had just eased back a bit and given the reader a little more credit, his ideas could have had an even greater impact.

But mallets aside, it was a fascinating read. As a blend of genres it worked really well for me, and it's nice to see something so ambitious. This is definitely one that stands out from the crowd. It's a little frustrating in places, not least at the end! If you're not a fan of cliffhangers, you're going to be irritated. Fortunately I have the second in the series to hand so I can dig into that straightaway and start looking for answers.



Absolutely one I'd recommend if you're looking for something off the beaten track.

Black Sun Reich

Trey Garrison's Black Sun Reich was brought to my attention via an email asking me to participate in a blog tour this month. Sadly I can't squeeze this one in at such short notice, but it does look like an interesting read. The first book in a series of three, it's available for pre-order on Kindle right now, at just 99p. That 99p will get you, I'm reliably informed, all sorts of madcap Swashbuckling fun complete with Nazis, Cowboys and Zombies. Now you don't see that everyday...


"Black Sun Reich: Part One of three in The Spear of Destiny, the first novel in a new steampunk, horror, alternate history, action-adventure series set in a 1920s where the Nazis have begun their subjugation of the world using the occult, advanced science, and a holy relic with awesome powers. Trey Garrison recaptures the unapologetic adventure, wonder, and excitement of the classic pulp fiction of the 1930s and 1940s, blending elements of steampunk with deeply researched historical fiction and a good dose of humor. 

The novel also explores major philosophical and moral issues relevant to our contemporary world: the trade-off between security and liberty, the morality of preemptive war, and what fundamentally separates good from evil. The North American continent is made up of several rival nations, and a Cold War is building among them. The Nazis rose to power a decade ago. People travel by airship, and powerful organizations calculate with Babbage’s Difference Engine. The Nazis have hatched a plot to raise a legion of undead soldiers. Enter Sean Fox Rucker and Jesus D’Anconia Lago, two Great War veterans and freelance pilots who are pulled into the quest. They are joined by a brash Greek merchant, a brilliant Jewish cowboy, and the woman who once broke Rucker’s heart. 

This ragtag band of reluctant, bickering, swashbuckling heroes is soon locked in a globe-spanning race against Nazi occultists, clockwork assassins, and a darkly charismatic commando. In a world where science and the supernatural coexist, and the monsters of legend are as real as the necromancers who summon them from murky realms, our heroes alone stand before the rising shadows. But all their efforts may not be enough."

Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Damnation Affair

If, unlike me, you enjoyed Lilith Saintcrow's The Iron Wyrm Affair, you might like to hop over to Orbit's site and read the first chapter of The Damnation Affair for free - voila

..and if it tickles your fancy, it's currently a most pleasant £2.99 on Kindle.


The West is a wild place, where the poison wind blows and the dead walk. But there is gold, and whiskey, and enough room for a man to forget what he once was. Until he can no longer can. Jack Gabriel's been the sheriff in Damnation almost since the town grew out of the dust and the mud. He keeps the peace - sort of - and rides the circuit every dawn and dusk with the chartermage, making sure the wilderness doesn't seep into the fragile attempt at civilization.

 Out there, away from the cities clinging to the New World's eastern rim, he doesn't remember what he was. Or at least, not much. But Damnation is growing, and along comes a schoolmarm. Catherine Barrowe is a right proper Boston miss, and it's a mystery why she would choose this particular town, where everything scandalous and dangerous is probably too much for a quality lady like her. Sometimes the sheriff wonders why she came out West - because everyone who does is running from something. He doesn't realize Cat may be prickly, delicate, and proper, but she is also determined. She's in Damnation to find her wayward older brother, whose letters were full of dark hints about gold, and trouble, and something about a claim. 

In a West where charm and charter live along clockwork and cold steel, where hot lead only kills your enemy once but it takes a blessing to make his corpse stay down, Cat will keep digging until she finds out what happened to her brother. If Jack knew what she was after, he could solve the mystery - because he killed the young man, and for good reason. The thing is, Cat's brother just won't stay dead, and the undead are rising with him . . .

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Clockwork Angel, Cassandra Clare

"When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London's Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos. 

Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, members of a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform, at will, into another person. What’s more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa's power for his own. Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. 

She soon finds herself fascinated by—and torn between—two best friends: James, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and blue-eyed Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm's length . . . everyone, that is, but Tessa. As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world. . . . and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all."

There are a couple of points I need to preface this review with. Firstly, I've not read the Mortal Instruments series so this was my first experience of Cassandra Clare, and secondly, I'm not big on YA. And because I'm not a YA, I don't feel qualified to review it..I mean, it's not written for me, right? I'm in my thirties. So this is a bonus 'just-for-fun' review that I wanted to share because this book totally threw me off course.

I absolutely should not have enjoyed this. It's written for teenagers and it has a silly love triangley romance thing going on. There's nothing remotely literary to it, nor anything particularly original. As for the steam, it's there, but there's absolutely no punk. It's everything I would normally turn my nose up at...but somehow...Clare totally hooked me into her world and I absolutely could not put this bloody book down. I even read it at work, and you can't begin to imagine the mockery that invited down upon me. My reading reputation is in tatters.

There's something so simple, and so beautiful about the Victorian London Clare creates here that I loved spending time in its foggy, gaslit, horsedrawn-carriage ridden pages. It's all cobblestones and Thames. Throw in some interestingly and unexpectedly flawed characters, a handful of plot twists and an unanticipated body count, and before you know it you've devoured 400 pages like a madwoman.

I wish I could define exactly what it is that made this so enjoyable for me. The best I can come up with is that Clare must be a born storyteller who has that ever elusive "X Factor". The Clockwork Angel was simple, but beautiful, I got all wrapped up in its magic and maybe..in a way...maybe it made me *feel* like a YA again. It's entertaining, and engaging, and..damn it..magical!

I hesitate to recommend it because of all of the above, but if you ever encounter a frosty weekend and want to curl up under the covers with something soothing, you could do an awful lot worse!

There were a lot of unanswered questions left at the end, and I have a horrible feeling I'm going to have to carry on with the series. Although not at work this time!

Monday, December 3, 2012

The Demi-Monde

I need to say a big thank you to Quercus Books today, for brightening up my dreary Monday with copies of Rod Rees's The Demi-Monde Winter, and Spring. They look positively good enough to eat:



















This is the blurb quotation that has me the most excited;

"The Demi-Monde: Discworld's savage noir cousin. Welcome to holo-hell" - Stephen Baxter

Yes please!

If, like me, you're new to this series, there's a great website over at http://www.thedemi-monde.com/. I'm really excited about these two, I love genre mash-ups and I'm looking forward to seeing how Rees blends everything together. It sounds like such an ambitious project, I love it when authors are brave enough to do mad things! I shall report back forthwith, have almost finished my current read and am bumping these up to next in line.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Boneshaker, Cherie Priest

Cherie Priest's much-anticipated steampunk debut has finally arrived in the form of a paperback original. Its plot features the sort of calibrated suspense that readers of her Four and Twenty Blackbirds would expect. 

Boneshaker derives its title from the Bone-Shaking Drill Engine, a device designed to give Russian prospectors a leg up in the race for Klondike gold. Unfortunately, there was one hitch: On its trial run, the Boneshaker went haywire and, long story short, turned much of Seattle into a city of the dead. 

Now, 16 years later, a teenage boy decides to find out what is behind that mysterious wall. Can his mother save him in time? Zombie lit of the first order.

This was a re-read for me, I'm glad to see these finally hitting the UK, but I got my copy from the US way back. I didn't get any further along in the series though, so I thought now would be a good time to delve back into The Clockwork Century as the titles line up on UK shelves.

For a second pass, it held up well. Boneshaker is a fun read, with some gorgeously original concepts and beautifully depicted scenes. I have to confess though that having read a lot more Steampunk since I first picked this title up, it doesn't wow me quite as much as it originally did.

Boneshaker is a slow-paced read, with the whole novel covering just a few days. It's richly detailed, but if rip-roaring fact-paced action is what you're after this probably isn't for you.

It's definitely steam-filled, there are airships, goggles and gasmasks everywhere you look. But as for the punk? Hmmm, I'm not so sure. On the second read a lot of the 'steampunk' elements read as really quite superficial. That's not to say that it's not a dirigible-load of fun, because it is, but it definitely lacks the punch and powerful individuality that the genre is capable of.

Dilute Steampunk for the masses, maybe?

Either way, it was still a win for me, largely because I really enjoy the relationship between Briar and Zeke. As a Mum myself, it's so nice to for once be able to read a novel where the Mum is the hero! So much of the Fantasy genre is packed with irritatingly stereotypical 2d "kick ass" (*shudder*) 20-something females, all lycra and tattoos and all completely incapable of anything without their big buff love interest. Briar is the perfect antidote to that particular type of drivel. Zeke may be a bit of moron, but Briar is a layered character who's really interesting to spend time with.

The zombies here...are awesome. Huge bonus points for the rotters! And the concept of a walled City is always a winner. But just like with the steam elements, they're there purely for entertainment and there's just...a layer missing. For me at least. If you're wanting to really dig your teeth into a challenging Steampunk title, you're going to be left still feeling hungry after this.

I can't throw a review out there without mentioning the sepia font. Too cool. I don't think I've ever seen that in a novel before. There are so many cool aspects to this book that tick all the right entertainment boxes. It's just..at the risk of endlessly repeating myself, a little lacking in substance.

On the whole, Boneshaker is massive amounts of fun. There are two female characters who really stand out, and the central Mother/Son relationship was a win for me. It does have a tendency to drag in places though. And if you're hardcore Steampunk, I'm not sure that this will hit the spot.

I'm keen to carry on into the series though, and see how things develop.

Land of Hope and Glory

This morning's gleeful library find;

It is 1852 and the Indian empire of Rajthana has ruled Europe for more than 100 years. With their vast armies, steam-and-sorcery technology, and mastery of the mysterious power of sattva, the Rajthanans appear invincible—but a bloody rebellion has broken out in a remote corner of the empire, in a poor and backward region known as England. 

At first Jack Casey, retired soldier, wants nothing to do with the uprising, but then he learns his daughter, Elizabeth, is due to be hanged for helping the rebels. The Rajthanans offer to spare her, but only if Jack hunts down and captures his best friend and former army comrade, who is now a rebel leader. Jack is torn between saving his daughter and protecting his friend, and he struggles just to stay alive as the rebellion pushes England into all-out war.

Looks fun! I'll probably make this my next read after The Difference Engine. And now that NanoWriMo is finished I will actually have some time to spend on these, hurrah!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Festive Steam

Some unexpected Steam at tonight's switching on of the Christmas lights in town :)


Beautiful!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

48,000

..just a quick note to say that I'm still alive, and will be posting reviews fervently very soon. It's the penultimate day of NanoWriMo and I've just hit the 48,000 word mark. My reading has been massively affected this month, but by God, I think I'm going to make it! It's my first time and I'm absolutely shattered, but chuffed to have made it this far. I'll be back here, reviewing like a madwoman once 1st Dec rolls around, hopefully with the full 50,000 under my belt :)

I'll be bringing some brand new site graphics with me, along with some lovely new titles for review...

Monday, November 26, 2012

Agatha H and the Airship City, Phil and Kaja Foglio

"The Industrial Revolution has escalated into all-out warfare. It has been sixteen years since the Heterodyne Boys, benevolent adventurers and inventors, disappeared under mysterious circumstances. 

Today, Europe is ruled by the Sparks, dynasties of mad scientists ruling over - and terrorizing - the hapless population with their bizarre inventions and unchecked power, while the downtrodden dream of the Hetrodynes' return. 

At Transylvania Polygnostic University, a pretty, young student named Agatha Clay seems to have nothing but bad luck. Incapable of building anything that actually works, but dedicated to her studies, Agatha seems destined for a lackluster career as a minor lab assistant. But when the University is overthrown by the ruthless tyrant Baron Klaus Wulfenbach, Agatha finds herself a prisoner aboard his massive airship Castle Wulfenbach - and it begins to look like she might carry a spark of Mad Science after all. 

From Phil and Kaja Foglio, creators of the Hugo, Eagle, and Eisner Award-nominated webcomic Girl Genius, comes Agatha H and the Airship City, a gaslamp fantasy filled to bursting with Adventure! Romance! and Mad Science!"

This was the perfect read for a day off work, it's fast paced, steam filled and completely bonkers, I couldn't put it down. Agatha is a hugely likeable heroine, and she's massively readable, I had no end of fun with her and can't wait for the sequel in January. I have to confess, when reading it I didn't realise it was a graphic novel adaptation, the novel covers the first 3 volumes of the comic series I believe, and they can be read online at www.girlgeniusonline.com, pardon me while I squeeeee!! Comics aren't usually my thing, but the idea of being able to 'see' all of the action I've just devoured is far too tempting to ignore.

Agatha's world is completely intriguing, the plot here may be filled with cliche but it works because of the original and beautifully vivid world-building. I defy anyone not to have fun with the Clanks and J√§germonsters, the constructs and the villains, the wasps and the Sparks. It's just, gorgeous. There's so much to lose yourself in, it was an absolutely beautiful read. Mad, but brilliant.
The only thing I can find as a negative is that once in a while the J√§germonsters' dialogue got a little too much to decipher, it slowed me down sometimes as I was trying to belt along behind Agatha. Other than that? Flawless! Can't wait for the next one.


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Agatha H and the Airship City - Free!

I'm not sure how long this offer will be available, as I've only just spotted it, but Night Shade Books are giving away 3 eBooks on a Thanksgiving deal. One of which is the delicious looking Agatha H and the Airship City;

"The Industrial Revolution has escalated into all-out warfare. Sixteen years have passed since the Heterodyne Boys, benevolent adventurers and inventors, disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Today, Europe is ruled by the Sparks, dynasties of mad scientists ruling over—and terrorizing—the hapless population with their bizarre inventions and unchecked power, while the downtrodden dream of the Heterodynes’ return. 

At Transylvania Polygnostic University, a pretty, young student named Agatha Clay seems to have nothing but bad luck. Incapable of building anything that actually works, but dedicated to her studies, Agatha seems destined for a lackluster career as a minor lab assistant. But when the university is overthrown by the ruthless tyrant Baron Klaus Wulfenbach, Agatha finds herself a prisoner aboard his massive airship Castle Wulfenbach—and it begins to look like she might carry a spark of Mad Science after all. 

 From Phil and Kaja Foglio, creators of the Hugo, Eagle, and Eisner Award-nominated webcomic Girl Genius, comes Agatha H. and the Airship City, a gaslamp fantasy filled to bursting with Adventure! Romance! and Mad Science!"

All you have to do is fire off a blank email to happythanksgiving@nightshadebooks.com and they'll auto-respond with a download link and a username and password. Nice!


I selected this post to be featured on my blog’s page at Book Review Blogs.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Mortal Engines, Philip Reeve

"It was a dark, blustery afternoon in spring, and the city of London was chasing a small mining town across the dried-out bed of the old North Sea." The great traction city London has been skulking in the hills to avoid the bigger, faster, hungrier cities loose in the Great Hunting Ground. But now, the sinister plans of Lord Mayor Mangus Crome can finally unfold. Thaddeus Valentine, London's Head Historian and adored famous archaeologist, and his lovely daughter, Katherine, are down in The Gut when the young assassin with the black scarf strikes toward his heart, saved by the quick intervention of Tom, a lowly third-class apprentice. Racing after the fleeing girl, Tom suddenly glimpses her hideous face: scarred from forehead to jaw, nose a smashed stump, a single eye glaring back at him. "Look at what your Valentine did to me!" she screams. "Ask him! Ask him what he did to Hester Shaw!" And with that she jumps down the waste chute to her death. Minutes later Tom finds himself tumbling down the same chute and stranded in the Out-Country, a sea of mud scored by the huge caterpillar tracks of cities like the one now steaming off over the horizon. In a stunning literary debut, Philip Reeve has created a painful dangerous unforgettable adventure story of surprises, set in a dark and utterly original world fueled by Municipal Darwinism -- and betrayal."

Municipal Darwinisim...THIS is the one I've been waiting for! Proper Steampunk! Mortal Engines was a complete gem of a read. It's one I might have steered clear of, if not for the Twitterverse, because it's a YA read and I'm always wary of those. What with me being so old and all.  But I got a recommendation via Twitter and I'm so glad I cracked into it, what a hidden treasure.

If you're a fan of Pulman, or The Terminator, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, or A Series of Unfortunate Events you'll find something to enjoy in Mortal Engines, I promise you. It's one of those rarities that works equally well whether you're twelve or waiting on your bus pass. Ageless. I'd happily read this to my son, and lend it to my Mum. And there aren't many titles I can say that about.

It's the World-building that makes it, there's something for everyone, and so much to get your teeth into should you want to immerse yourself in Reeve's world. It's clever, and it's layered, and what a difference from the cardboard cut-outs I've been reading recently.

Mortal Engines is action packed and roars along at at a cracking pace. The plot is intriguing and the body count is high. Reeve's series opener is innovative, beautifully imagined, well written and perfectly paced. I can't fault it. I would love, love love love to see this as an animated film...oh my God...it'd be stunning.

The good news for me is that not only are there three more in the series, which I'll definitely be enjoying;


but there's also a prequel out now too, so I can immerse myself in blissful Reeveness for a good while to come;





Thursday, November 22, 2012

Unnatural History, Jonathan Green

"In the closing years of the 20th century the British Empire's rule is still going strong. Queen Victoria is about to celebrate her 160th birthday, kept alive by advanced steam technology. London is a fantastical sprawling metropolis where dirigibles roam the skies, robot bobbies enforce the law and dinosaurs are on display in London zoo. 

Welcome to Magna Britannia, a steam driven world full of fantastical creations and shady villains. Here dashing dandies and mustachioed villains battle for supremacy while below the city strange things stir in the flooded tunnels of the old London Underground. In two scant months the nation, and all her colonies, will celebrate 160 years of Queen Victoria's glorious reign. But all is not well at the heart of the empire of Magna Britannia. A chain of events is about to be set in motion that, if not stopped, could lead to a world-shattering conclusion. It begins with a break-in at the Natural History Museum. A night watchman is murdered. An eminent Professor of Evolutionary Biology goes missing. Then a catastrophic overground rail-crash unleashes the dinosaurs of London Zoo"

This is a hard one for me to call. As I was reading Unnatural History I had a lot of fun in some places, and in others I was tearing my hair out in frustration at all the caricatures and stereotypes I kept having to endure. The whole novel is riddled with cliches that you're going to either love or hate. In all honesty the point at which Green included the line "Rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated" I found myself crossing over the hate line.

Really I think the only thing I can say about this title is that it's fast-paced, action-packed fun, awash with every genre cliche imaginable. I can't write an in-depth review of it, because there's no depth to it. If you're looking for something to get your teeth into, and you're not a fan of one dimensional characters and general plot insanity, this one isn't for you. If you're ok with just enjoying the notion of dinosaurs rampaging through London, with cardboard cutout characters along for the ride, go for it.

I do 'get' what Unnatural History is doing, in fairness it doesn't pretend to be literary and it probably does work OK on a 'penny dreadful' level, but it really wasn't for me on the whole, and I won't be going any further with this series.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Shopping, and learning

It's inevitable that I'm going to make some mistakes in my reading choices as I slowly find my feet within the genre. The Iron Wyrm Affair was #1, and I'm genuinely in two minds as to whether or not Unnatural History was #2. I finished it tonight and it was a bit of a mixed bag to be honest. Review to follow tomorrow, evil work schedule permitting.

I'm pretty sure my newest book purchases are going to be an improvement. I've got Reeve's Mortal Engines, Hunt's The Court of The Air and Gibson's The Difference Engine. No Gas Light Romances there, Huzzah!



The back end of this month is a bit mad for me, as I'm fighting to complete the NanoWriMo challenge, but rest assured that come December I'll be putting my feet up and recovering by reading like a woman possessed. So while things will most likely be quiet for a couple of weeks, all hell will soon break loose on the review front :)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Iron Wyrm Affair, Lilith Saintcrow


"Emma Bannon, forensic sorceress in the service of the Empire, has a mission: to protect Archibald Clare, a failed, unregistered mentath. His skills of deduction are legendary, and her own sorcery is not inconsiderable. It doesn't help much that they barely tolerate each other, or that Bannon's Shield, Mikal, might just be a traitor himself. Or that the conspiracy killing registered mentaths and sorcerers alike will just as likely kill them as seduce them into treachery toward their Queen. 

In an alternate London where illogical magic has turned the Industrial Revolution on its head, Bannon and Clare now face hostility, treason, cannon fire, black sorcery, and the problem of reliably finding hansom cabs."

As an over-enthusiastic newcomer to the genre I'm obviously going to make some mistakes along the way. I think The Iron Wyrm Affair was one of them! Is it *actually* Steampunk? It really didn't feel like it to me, but then to-date I've only read Boneshaker and Infernal Devices, both of which leave this one for dead.

To me Saintcrow's novel read like standard Fantasy/Alternate Reality, genre-wise. In terms of the book itself, it's such a massive rip-off of Sherlock that I couldn't really give it much love, try as I might. Couple this with some of the most...'unusual' grammar I've ever read, and it was a bit of an epic fail if I'm honest. I've never had to go back and re-read so many bizarre sentences in my life. As an ex-English teacher I was reaching for my red pen a few times. And if this wasn't enough to wind me up, the sheer volume of slightly altered names was making my left eye twitch at an alarming rate.

It was very much a slow starter, and I found it to be a jumbled mix of styles and themes which ultimately felt like a right royal muddle. It did get better as it went on though, in fairness, and I fought my way through to the end. There were some lovely touches here and there, but for me they were heavily outweighed by the annoyances, and this isn't a series I'd come back to.

Must Pay Closer Attention When Choosing Titles.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

My Next 5 Steampunk Reads

I'm terrible when it comes to my TBR pile, I add it to it madly at all times and rarely ever stick to any kind of reading order. With a shiny new blog to hand here, I feel like I've got the chance to set some realistic Steamery Punkery goals, and having had a rummage about online I've come up a list of a top five Steampunk novels which I'll work my way through before buying any more books. I absolutely promise. Probably.

And so, once I've finished The Iron Wyrm Affair, this is my plan;


#2
#3
#4

















#5























I think that should ease me in nicely, what do YOU think? Any suggestions for the next set? Any obvious swaps?

A New Obsession begins

Hello! and welcome to my new Site! Here you can join me on my journey through the Fantastic world of Steampunk Fiction. The reviews will be kicking in very soon. As a newcomer to the genre, especially one who's fallen instantly in love with it, I thought it would be cool to chronicle my reading journey right from the beginning.

Right now I'm reading Saintcrow's The Iron Wyrm Affair,



and I have a Kindle packed full of Steampunk awesomeness just waiting to be devoured.

If you're a long time Steamery and Punkery fan, or a newbie like myself, I'd love your company along the way!

"She suddenly longed for a glass of decent wine and an exceedingly sensational and frivolous novel, read in the comfort of her own bed."