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Posted November 19, 2012
Tweed & Nightingale: Adventure in a Steampunk Mystery
London in 1895, filled with steam and Tesla powered technology, never seemed so believable until Paul Crilley's Lazarus Machine. The first Tweed & Nightingale Adventure is everything one would expect from a science-fiction mystery: intriguing, speckled with humor, and riddled with danger for its endearing detective duo. Sebastian Tweed and Octavia Nigtingale are a force to reckon with and though they come from different backgrounds, their chemistry is undeniable and fun to see come to realization.
Seventeen year old Tweed's father, a conman, is kidnapped in the middle of their latest job. The biggest suprise for Tweed is not that his father is taken, but that he's taken by a most feared criminal, Professor Moriarty. Moriarty was last heard of when he fell from Reichenbach Falls with the famous detective Sherlock Holmes, but he left behind a reputation for being a murderous criminal mastermind. On the posh side of town, Octavia, also known as Songbird, restlessly searches for her mother, who has been missing for a year. She focuses on finding out any and all information related to Moriarty which inevitably leads her to intersect paths with Tweed. Tweed and Songbird meld almost seamlessly into this evenly matched partnership to search for their missing parents. Their friendly bantering is natural and will make readers feel at home in their world. Tweed's mind is conditioned for deductive reasoning and compliments Songbird's knack for research and creating distractions.They make the most dangerous of tasks feel like exciting adventures as they delve deeper into what reveals itself to be a plot against the Crown, organized by the most powerful government agency - the Ministry.
Usually when I think of steampunk, my first thought is: limited technology. Novels like The Lazarus Machine prove that a story set in a steam era doesn't always reflect a primitive lifestyle. Octavia admires the renowned Ada Lovelace, who's work with Charles Babbage is held in high esteem. Tesla towers are scattered all througout London powering computers and buildings. Crilley's most unique contribution to the steam era, though, is the streamline automata powered by human souls. The mechanics involved with the automata is out of this world and definitely not something I've read before. The ingenious creations don't stop there and as the story builds in action and discovery, the inventions become more ethically challanging and original.
Crilley's fresh take on an alternate era will keep readers furiously flipping the pages and never knowing what's around the corner. The story progresses at just the right pace to keep you in the dark while cleverly developing in mystery. The direction of The Lazarus Machine is truly surprising and I love it's unexpected plot twists. I went from just enjoying the story to becoming entirely invested in its outcome and what's next for Tweed and Nightingale. The Lazarus Machine is the beginning of an exciting and adventurous series that will rock your perception of mystery and steampunk!
*Copy of book provided via publisher in exchange for an honest review*
Also posted on Lovey Dovey Books
3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 23, 2014
This reminded me somewhat of Kady Cross's Steampunk Chronicles.
This reminded me somewhat of Kady Cross's Steampunk Chronicles. Seems that everyone is getting on the steampunk bandwagon these days! The premise was great. Bad guys let by Professor Moriarty in steamships with fancy weapons kidnapping and killing with a full police cover-up. Two of the kidnap-ees happen to be Sebastian Tweed's father and Olivia Nightingale's mother, so they end up joining forces. However, I felt the story was in general too short and lacking in development. I'll read the next one, just hope it's more fully developed.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 2, 2014
Intelligent and fun.
Paul Crilley delivers a fantastically clever mystery with characters who draw you in to the story alongside them. Snarky banter and a fast pace keep you interested even after the book ends; I can hardly wait to read the next one.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 25, 2013
Rating: 4 1/2 stars I always thought I was born in the wrong dec
Rating: 4 1/2 starsWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
I always thought I was born in the wrong decade. Actually, I thought I was born in the wrong decade AND dimension. I’ve always liked history and, without me noticing, I’ve developed a penchant for steampunk as well. The Lazarus Machine has got to be one of the better steampunk novels I’ve read in a long time.
London in 1895 has never seem this enticing and this exciting than in the first book of Paul Crilley’s steampunk series. The story follows Tweed and Octavia as they search for the kidnappers behind their parent’s abduction. Throughout the book, Crilley manages to incorporate the legendary figures of Holmes and Moriarty into the story (which basically sealed this book in my must-read list).
A lot of the stories in the steampunk subgenre are kind of unimaginative as the writers tend to rehash some of the more well-known technologies into their own story. Crilley, likewise, used some of the more familiar techs but he also introduced new weaponries and technology into his world.
The only fault I found with his book was that the pacing was sometimes a little too slow for my taste.
Posted May 14, 2013
¿The Lazarus machine¿ by, Paul Crilley It¿s 1895 in a steam
“The Lazarus machine” by, Paul CrilleyWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
It’s 1895 in a steampunk London. Sebastian Tweed and Octavia Nightingale have grown up in very different circles but when Sebastian’s father and Octavia’s mother are kidnapped the teen’s worlds collide. Professor Moriarty is loose in the city and he has a group of masked thugs at his disposal. Knowing they can only count on themselves, Tweed and Nightingale team up to find their lost parents and put a stop Moriarty’s nefarious plans.
“The Lazarus machine” is so much fun. I loved reading it and here are some reasons why:
*Sherlock Holmes and Professor James Moriarty are characters in this book. That automatically makes this story about fifty percent more fun because they are such great characters. (Love them)
*Sebastian Tweed. What a lovely, awkward, and funny young man. I fell in love with him immediately and I wanted to be the one on the adventure with him.
*Octavia Nightingale. She is smart, sassy, and very brave. She doesn’t take crap from anyone and she is the perfect partner for Tweed.
*Some of my favorite quotes:
1. (“Are you drunk?” he shouted.
She glanced back at him. “What? No. Don’t be absurd.” She grinned again. “Why? Are you offering?”)
2. (“Spinsterhood is still an acceptable alternative. Lots of free time to play with cats, I imagine.”)
3. (“Nobody likes a smart aleck, Tweed,” she snapped.
“Is that so?” said Tweed, distracted still peering into the alley. “Is that why you have no friends?”)
4. (Tweed was silent for a while. Then he asked, “Should we get something to eat?”
“Are you paying?”
“No. I’m poor. You can pay.”
“Fine. But I get to pick where we’re going.”
“Nowhere fancy. I don’t think I want to be surrounded by other people like you.”
“How dare you…”)
5. (“Tell me, do you think the only way I can distract a man is by acting hysterical? Is that what you think of women? I’m surprised you didn’t just tell me to undo a few buttons and flash my cleavage at him. Would you like me to do that, Sebastian Tweed? Hmm?”)
*This book read like a dream. I think that anyone who reads it will love it and I can’t wait for the second book to be released.
Posted March 5, 2013
The Lazarus Machine is being hailed as ¿Doctor Who¿ meets ¿Sherl
The Lazarus Machine is being hailed as “Doctor Who” meets “Sherlock” – and being the newfound BBC addict I am, I JUMPED at reading this one. I had these ideas that it would be full of a steampunk setting, with some historical fiction feel to it, little bit of sci fi, and just enough mystery to leave me guessing. Doesn’t that sound awesome?!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
And while I began reading it and found it a bit slow at first, by the latter half of the book I knew I’d found another winner. The Lazarus Machine completely delivered, notwithstanding its slow start and introduction to Paul Crilley’s new world.
Reasons to Read:
1. A fascinating, alternate steampunk world:
Admittedly, I’m a bit of a newbie to steampunk – and I’m sure some of you are too. So I feel like every time I read anything remotely a la steampunk it feels fresh and exciting to me. Maybe this is all fairly common among steampunk books, but I loved how central and influential Charles Babbage and ESPECIALLY Ada Lovelace were to this 1895 England. Plus, automatons with human souls? That’s just disturbing and creepy enough to be EXCITING. AND! There’s a secret government agency called The Ministry working for the Crown. I’m totally game for conspiracy theories.
2. Sebastian Tweed as a misfit:
First of all, bonus points for a great male hero. I think Sebastian is the type of character that a number of male (and female) readers will be able to relate to, and he takes so much after Sherlock Holmes. Brilliant, a little bit awkward at times, and kind of obnoxious... but in this devastatingly clever way that makes him endearing at the same time.
3. Solid opposite-gender relationships:
I need to comment on how much I loved the relationship between Sebastian and Octavia. It takes them a little while to warm up to each other, and I feel a little bit of romantic tension going on there, but they treat each other like equals. Deep down, there seems to be so much respect for each other and I loved that. And that’s extended to other couples in the book as well, even though none of them are flawless. But I love how respectful Sebastian is towards Octavia, and that he doesn’t for a minute see her as inferior. I think the inclusion of Ada Lovelace in society really helps with this idea.
4. Spunky Octavia Nightingale:
I love to read books with characters like Octavia. She’s so brave and quirky and INTELLIGENT. She’s witty and exactly the kind of woman I like to imagine myself being. She’s equally attractive as a character to both male and female readers, just like Sebastian. And although she isn’t the main protagonist, she’s an extremely significant part of the story all on her own.
The mystery wasn’t nearly as predictable as it seemed at first glance, either. It is so much fun and such a pleasure to read, and one that I flipped through very quickly. I wish it had had a bit of a stronger start to really immerse me in the story, but it really is more of a slow burn for the first few chapters. Just stick with it! Trust me, it gets there.
And if anything I wished by the end that it had been a bit longer to devote a little bit more time to the world building. What’s there is great, and very enticing, yet I wished there had been more because I think it’s one of the strongest features of the book.
Review copy received from publisher for review; no other compensation was received.
Posted January 20, 2013
Posted April 10, 2014
No text was provided for this review.