In a Victorian era ruled by a council of ruthless steam barons, mechanical power is the real monarch and sorcery the demon enemy of the Empire. Nevertheless, the most coveted weapon is magic that can run machines - something Evelina has secretly mastered. But rather than making her fortune, her special talents could mean death or an eternity as a guest of Her Majesty's secret laboratories. What's a polite young lady to do but mind her manners and pray she's never found out?
But then there's that murder. As Sherlock Holmes's niece, Evelina should be able to find the answers, but she has a lot to learn. And the first decision she has to make is whether to trust the handsome, clever rake who makes her breath come faster, or the dashing trick rider who would dare anything for her if she would only just ask.
An absolutely fascinating story. I do love me some steampunk now and then, and this was certainly a good book. I liked Evelina. She was raised in the circus, as her mother ran away with a circus artist. Her grandmother taught her everything she new about her magic, but Evelina’s is so much stronger. And when her other grandmother came to take her with her, and have her raised as a gentlewomen, she was torn between two lives.
England is now ruled by steam barons, and they rule with an iron hand. Magic is outlawed, and so are inventors who try to make machines that don’t run on steam. So if Evelina is discovered, she will face a quick death. She can combine magic and machinery, making them alive, by putting nature spirits in them. It was absolutely fascinating.
So when a maid is murdered in her friend’s house, and her father, a former Ambassador, tries to sweep it under the rug, Evelina is determined to find out the truth. After all, her uncle is the famous Sherlock Holmes, and he has also thought her a thing or two.
Lots of intrigue, lots of daring action and great gadgets and secrets. I loved it, and will certainly read the next book soon. I liked Evelina, she knows she is not important to society with her humble background, and she would love to go to university instead of attending balls and the like. And then there are the two men who want her, but in the end, they both betray her. But she takes her own destiny in her hands, and I do love that. She is never dependent on anyone, though she values her friendship with her hosts’ daughter.
I am very curious for what will happen in the next book, and what is the deal with the automatons from Switzerland, and if the bad guy is really dead or not.
Keywords: great main character, fascinating world building and story, original.
© 2015 Reviews by Aurian