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Posts Tagged ‘Steam Punk’

The Rise of the Remarkables Bk2 The Thaumagician’s Revenge by Gareth Ward. Pub. Walker books, 2021.

August 26, 2021 Comments off

The thrilling sequel to Brasswitch and Bot a title reviewed elsewhere on this blog and not the end of this saga.

In the first book Wrench discovers her talents as a Brasswitch which allow her to mentally get inside a machine and close it down. Very important if you are at war with machines. She has embraced magic as well and was taught to hone her skills by a boy Plum who has let the side down and become one of the enemy after an enormous battle called the Minster Schism which Wrench helped win.

Set in the beautiful city of York Wrench, her robot sidekick Bot, friend Octavia and new Brasswitch, Vexanna, belong to a group of counter revolutionaries or Regulators called Thirteen. They are to battle Remarkables who came through a Rupture above York made by the old Gods, accidentally, who thought they were opening a gateway to heaven. Through this Rupture came good and bad Remarkables or creatures with alarming body shapes and powers.

Not all Remarkables are bad but the leader of a rival group fighting the Remarkables, Flemington, hates Thirteen and wants to eliminate all Remarkables. The battles are riveting and bring in all sorts of technology with a Victorian era characteristic, hence the title steam punk.

Wrench has problems though. She still wants to get to the bottom of why her parents were killed and she wants to confront Plum whom she was close to but now realises he has “the innocence of a child pulling legs off a crane fly”. They are now enemies.

After a series of battles in the brick works and the museum Femington has procured a Cabal Inquisition, which is to look at all the action to date and pass judgement on Wrench and Bot. The Thirteen are in danger and the bad Remarkables are still a huge threat. .

On top of all this Wrench appears to be losing her powers and has certainly lost her confidence. What has Vexanna got to do with this and can she recover before it is too late? Read this action packed novel and see what happens.

The Rise of the Remarkables Bk1. Brasswitch and Bot by Gareth Ward.

August 7, 2020 Comments off

brasswitchThe Rise of the Remarkables Bk1. Brasswitch and Bot by Gareth Ward. Pub. Walker Books, 2020.

This is a steam punk novel for intermediate and High school readers of science fiction and fantasy, that will blow your mind. If you have read Gareth Wards other novels you will know what I mean. Highly imaginative, full of weird creatures and situations and full of action that will leave you breathless. AND it is only part 1.

Wrench is a teenage girl who feels responsible for her parents death in a train accident. She lives in York and is an apprentice machine operator. She believes in machines, the laws of Physics and the science of engineering but she doesn’t realise that she is a Brasswitch. A Brasswitch is someone who has the power touch a machine, get inside it and knows how it works and if anything is wrong with it. She also needs to get to grips with magic.

Then she is held captive by a regulator called Flemmington, who hunts weird creatures in this weird world including brasswitches. He puts her to the test in which she either reveals her powers or dies.

Bot, a robotic Automaton comes to her rescue. He is powerful, has swagger and tends to wade into any situation with guns blazing. He needs a Brasswitch to help him fight Aberrations or weird and dangerous creatures from other dimensions who have entered the World through a Rupture over the city of York. The Rupture has been sealed or has it?

It is a dangerous World and their are some stupendous battles. At the heart of this first part is for Wrench to find out who and what she is and find out the truth behind her parents death. Fortunately she has an ally in Bot but also a tentacle ridden woman with soothing powers called Octavia and a boy with magic called Plum.

This novel won the sir Julius Vogel Award for children’s literature in NZ this year. You would be mad to miss this one.

The Traitor and the Thief by Gareth Ward

August 1, 2017 Comments off

traitor thiefThe Traitor and the Thief by Gareth Ward. Pub. Walker Books, 2017.

Many words could be used to describe this novel for readers of a wide age range from 12-18 years. Steam punk should be a couple of them but also ingenious, thrilling and enormously clever would be others.

The central character is teenager Sin who was left at an orphanage with a teddy bear, grew up tough and ended up working the streets as a thief for Fixer, a Fagan like character. He learns that rules mean nothing when you have money, power and privilege. The poor have no chance. Some things never change.

He is caught by the mysterious Eldritch Moons and pressured to join a COVERT OPERATIONS GROUP (COG) and train to be a spy. His fellow trainees include the ruthless Velvet, the delicious Zonda and a host of villainous reprobates but his talents as a liar, a cheat and thief are just the talents needed.

COG is headed by a genius inventor named Nimrod whose inventions form the steam punk part of the novel and he has the moral high ground by using his organisation to prevent war. Nimrod makes many enemies and COG has more leaks and conflicts than the West Wing of the White House.

Will Sin survive? and who are his parents? Is there a link between his abandonment at birth and COG? Read it and enjoy this thriller as much as I did. The ending will have you gasping for breath.

The plot bears a close similarity to the military, industrial and political rivalry that precipitated World war 1, and the city of Coxford where the novel is set, is remarkably like London.

Winner of the Storylines Tessa Duder Award. Splendidly paced and written. Great cover.