The fate of England is once again in the hands of an ingenious archivist paired with a beautiful, fearless lady of adventure. And though their foe be fiendishly clever, so then is Mr. Books . . . and Miss Braun still has a number of useful and unusual devices hidden beneath her petticoats.
Christal’s Review – 5 Skulls – A
I really enjoyed Phoenix Rising, the first novel in the series, but I have to say that The Janus Affair blows it out of the water! It was an amazing read, filled with wonderful characters, detailed world building, and an intriguing plot. This is my favorite steam punk series and I cannot wait for the next installment.
Wellington Books and Eliza Braun are once again caught up in an investigation for the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences. This time, the mystery hits even closer to home for Eliza as it involves her mentor Kate Sheppard and her son and Eliza’s former lover, Douglas Sheppard. Activists in the Women’s Suffrage Movement are being targeted. They aren’t being shot though… oh no, this is a Peculiar Occurrence! The criminals are using a gun engineered to move matter from one place to another. Basically, the activists are being kidnapped by weapon and Kate Sheppard is at the top of the list.
I found the mystery to be very interesting and I loved the technology behind the weapon. The eventual reveal of the big bad was well done and had quite a clever twist. There were interesting pieces of steam-powered technology, lots of action, a well-played con, and of course a few explosions.
The addition of Eliza’s former paramour was nicely done. His involvement didn’t feel forced, but it did force our two main characters to analyze their relationship and feelings for one another. I have to say, I loved the way the book ended!
One of my favorite parts of the book was the con game including the Ministry Seven. I love the way the children are written, especially little Serena. She and Wellington are impersonating the daughter and husband of Eliza, respectively. Serena, completely in character of course, tells Wellington not to worry about “Mum” because she’s special and that she loves her. Wellington replies that he loves her too and Serena yells, “I knew it!” It was a very funny exchange and, even when the con went bad, the actions between Serena and Wellington were very touching.
I can’t recommend this book more highly for fans of steam punk. Everything about it was wonderful and left me eagerly anticipating the third novel!
Series Reading Order:
1. Phoenix Rising
2. The Janus Affair
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