Ahoy there me mateys! With about 80 active series in progress, I really shouldn’t have started one more. But I saw this and couldn’t help meself. The crew has been raving about this one and y’all be right! In fact, I will let me scalawags convince ye lollygagger’s to go with the flow and join the rest of us!
The nitty-gritty: As twisty and complex as Shakespeare, this story surprised me in every way possible. This is definitely one of 2017’s “must reads!” . . . I can honestly say I’ve never encountered a world quite like this before. If you love genre mash-ups, then you’ll love this heady combination of steampunk, court intrigue, and mystery, with a dash of Alexandre Dumas’ The Three Musketeers.” . . . [This be] one of the most surprising books I’ve read in quite some time. And by surprising, I mean that it continued to surprise me up to the end. Just when I thought it couldn’t get any better, Craddock adds yet another layer to his story. I often use the term “multi-layered” when writing book reviews, but reading this book was literally like watching a garden of strange and beautiful flowers unfurl their petals.
Its story’s scattered allusions initially prompted me to approach this one with a wariness I usually reserve for unknown quantities, but ultimately this mishmash of genre elements ended up being one of my favorite aspects of the book. There seems to be something for everyone, whether it’s science fiction, fantasy, historicals, steampunk or action and adventure that tickles your fancy . . . Musketeers, Bloodshadows, clockwork cyborgs, Glasswalkers, airships and floating islands…is there anything this book doesn’t have? And as if that wasn’t enough, in the middle of all this is also a disorienting jumble of court intrigue and deadly politics . . .Also, I can’t tell you what a breath of fresh air it is to read a book where the heroine actually SHOWS readers how smart, strong and capable she is through her actions,”
So, great characters and an amazing world. What more could you possibly want. Oh, maybe a beautifully written story that puts you in mind of the likes of Dumas, easy to digest prose, vivid descriptions and a slippery eel of a plot that is huge in scope but that comes together in a very satisfying way? Well, if that’s what you’re looking for then prepare to be happy because it’s all here in abundance . . . A mash up of European alternate history and steampunk told with flair and absolutely wonderful to read. I loved this.”
All ye dimwitted dunderling fools who have not yet read this gem deserve 20 lashes and no rum rations! Ye must visit this port as soon as possible because Isabelle and Jean-Claude be adventurers worth knowing. And who doesn’t want to learn everything they can about continents in the sky and the sky ships that sail them? Arrrr!
I need book two immediately!
x The Captain
Goodreads has this to say about the novel:
In a world of soaring continents and bottomless skies, where a burgeoning new science lifts skyships into the cloud-strewn heights and ancient blood-borne sorceries cling to a fading glory, Princess Isabelle des Zephyrs is about to be married to a man she has barely heard of, the second son of a dying king in an empire collapsing into civil war.
Born without the sorcery that is her birthright but with a perspicacious intellect, Isabelle believes her marriage will stave off disastrous conflict and bring her opportunity and influence. But the last two women betrothed to this prince were murdered, and a sorcerer-assassin is bent on making Isabelle the third. Aided and defended by her loyal musketeer, Jean-Claude, Isabelle plunges into a great maze of prophecy, intrigue, and betrayal, where everyone wears masks of glamour and lies. Step by dangerous step, she unravels the lies of her enemies and discovers a truth more perilous than any deception.
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