Steampunk Revisited


I don’t think I’ve mentioned, recently, how very much I love steampunk.  I love everything about it…the clothing, the jewelry, the gadgets and, of course, the books.


I have just finished a really great and truly steampunk novel called The Girl in the Steel Corset by Kady Cross.  I checked it out from my library in ebook format and really enjoyed reading it on my iPad and thought it quite apropos to be reading it on a gadget.

Finley Jayne is an unusual girl.  You can’t see it but, when she feels threatened, you will know it.  She is currently working for the August-Raynes family as a lady’s maid but runs afoul of Felix, the eldest son and a scoundrel. One night, she is on her way home from working very late and Felix approaches her with evil intentions.  When he makes his move, Finley’s darker side takes over…literally, and she slams him into a wall!  Unfortunately, he doesn’t get the message and comes at her again, cursing.  The thing inside of her gives her the strength of 10 men and she defends herself with force, leaving Felix in a puddle of blood.  He was lucky to still be alive but now, Finley is on the run.  Her feet take her directly into the path a speeding contraption driven by one Lord Griffin Greythorn.  On impact, Griffin is certain he has killed the young girl but he and his giant friend Sam pick her up and take her home for Emily, resident genius and gifted healer, to look after.  This action changes the course of all of their lives, for better and for worse. Whether she realizes it or not, she is like these new friends, each of whom has a secret.  They band together to fight a terrifying threat.  The Machinist is a reprobate who has developed a new kind of automaton.  He sends them out to commit crimes for him.  At first, the thefts seem random but, soon a truly sinister plot is uncovered and Griffin and his friends must work together to defeat him before it’s too late.

In fine steampunk form, Kady Cross embraces all things mechanically Victorian.  Her characters are intriguing, each with a secret buried just beneath the surface; some innocuous like unrequited love, others more deadly.  Finley, herself, has an interesting past of which even she is unaware.  The only problem I had as I read was that I felt like I had stepped into the middle of a series and, as it turns out, I did.  I went in search of what I was missing and found The Strange Case of Finley Jayne, the first book in the series but, by then I was too far into the story to stop so that will be my next read.  The ending clearly leaves room for a sequel but I’m also hoping for a prequel!  While the idea of any kind of corset is uncomfortably confining, an armored one with weapons built in sounds like a must-have for a Victorian lady who wants to take care of herself!  If you are as big a fan of steampunk then this is a series you cannot miss!

Other steampunk novels include the following titles.  The ones in bold are in the VWL.

Steampunk! an anthology
Steampunk Poe
Clockwork Angel & Clockwork Prince/Clare
The Dark Deeps/Slade
Fever Crumb/Reeve
Iron Thorn/Kitteridge
Lady of Devices/Adina
Steampunk Detective

Pictures from Flickr, Creative Commons area

If you are interested in buying some really fantastic steampunk stuff (clothing, jewelry, etc.) you absolutely must check out Etsy.  Everything there is handmade and beautiful.  They have some steampunk owl jewelry that I drool over all the time and will buy, one of these days.

About dknott715

I am a high school librarian and avid reader. I work in a high school library in Chesterfield, VA serving 9th grade students and staff.

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