The last Saintcrow book I read I definitely enjoyed, and this one was no different. Definitely more frightening, though, because while the Iron Wyrm included some nice spooky stuff, there’s something about a pathogen that just scares the crap out of me. Probably the relative likelihoods of “death by giant dragon” and “death by disease.”
Anyhow, as with the previous book, the setting is still a gorgeous alternate-history Victorian London. There’s a bit more expansion on how some of the magical stuff works, and some delightfully irritating open-ended bits about some of the history of how these things were created.1
(To be honest, I’m keeping this review rather short because it’s the second book in the series – I linked to my review of the first one as a way to get you to go read that one and then read the first book before you’d read the second.)
There was rather more of a hat-tip to Sherlock Holmes than even in the first – Clare, our Sherlock figure, was given his own Moriarty in Dr. Vance. A seriously fun interaction.
And Bannon, our delightfully immoral sorceress, found herself even more embroiled in politics than before, creating some interesting situations. I’m looking forward to the next book in the series, though it’ll probably be a while before I get to it – my ‘to read’ list is still rather long.
That said, I quite enjoyed the book. If you haven’t read the first, go do that. Once you’ve read the first, read the second as well.
- Apparently the levitating Collegia, home of the sorcerous school, was once the top of a mountain, but then someone decided “nah, we want this somewhere else” and just ripped the top off the mountain? so cool ↩