The Music of Razors

( 2 )

Overview

In nineteenth-century Boston, a young doctor on the run from the law falls in with a British confidence artist. Together–and with dire consequences–they bring back to the light something meant to be forgotten.

A world away in London, an absent father, haunted by the voice of a banished angel, presents his daughter with an impossible friend–a clockwork ballerina.

For two centuries, a bullet-removal specialist has wielded instruments of angel ...

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Music of Razors

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Overview

In nineteenth-century Boston, a young doctor on the run from the law falls in with a British confidence artist. Together–and with dire consequences–they bring back to the light something meant to be forgotten.

A world away in London, an absent father, haunted by the voice of a banished angel, presents his daughter with an impossible friend–a clockwork ballerina.

For two centuries, a bullet-removal specialist has wielded instruments of angel bone in service to a forgotten power . . . and now he vows to find someone else to shoulder the burden, someone with a conscience of their own, a strong mind, and a broken will. For a hundred years he has searched for the perfect contender, and now he has found two: a brother and a sister. Walter and Hope. Either will do.

Last night something stepped from little Walter’s closet and he never woke up. Now he travels the dark road between worlds, no longer entirely boy nor wholly beast, but with one goal in mind: to prevent his sister from suffering the same fate as he. Only the creature he has become can save Hope. But is it too late to save himself?

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“A nightmarishly imaginative debut from a writer of real assurance and vision . . . Cameron Rogers is going to go places.”
–Neil Gaiman

“Dark, disturbing, and filled with moments of real charm and magic, The Music of Razors is the best first novel I’ve seen this year.”
–Locus

“Cameron Rogers writes like a magician.”
–K. J. Bishop, author of The Etched City

“Superior fantasy. Fast-paced and seductive, it digs deep for effect and delivers.”
–Sean Williams, author of The Resurrection Man

“Packed with surreal images that haunt you long after you’ve put down the book.”
–Storm Constantine, author of the Wraeththu trilogy

Publishers Weekly

At the start of Australian author Rogers's inventive but disappointing debut, Walter, a four-year-old boy with sudden intimations of mortality, makes the mistake of banishing from his closet a monster who was actually his protector. This leaves him prey to the depredations of Henry, a former rogue medical student now aged over 150, whom we first meet in an unconvincing Boston of 1840, rife with such anachronisms as gaslights and doctors aware of bacteria. Henry is part of a circle of decadents who have conjured up a demon (the conjuring scene makes for one of the novel's especially vivid moments) but bungled their demonic deal. In a parallel world, Walter merges with the spirit of his protective monster, determined to protect his younger sister, Hope—Henry's next target. Rogers aims for a Neil Gaiman–style plot about evil versus spirituality, but lacks Gaiman's grace or charm. (May)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780345493194
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 5/1/2007
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 5.55 (w) x 8.14 (h) x 0.74 (d)

Read an Excerpt

APOCRYPHA

Seventy-two angels fell with Samael.

As an angel is created it is gifted a function, portfolio, responsibilities. The angel charged with assigning power and function was a powerful angel indeed. Now that it grasped the concept of “rebellion” it truly understood how much power it held. The Power to assign Power. In the wake of this revelation other ideas followed, other realizations. This angel was staggered by the sheer enormity of what it might possess and achieve.

Thus the angel sinned.

An angel does not die. Anticipating what might occur should its audience with the Fallen One go badly, the angel seized upon another of its kind, sundered it, and stole the silver of its bones.

From those bones the angel fashioned instruments approximating its own power. As the angel named them, they existed. Mercurial and undying, the living bone was bestowed with aspects of the angel’s own function. The function of assigning Form and Power. It then scattered these instruments across the Earth, a safeguard against the possibility of its own failure, and departed the presence of the God that had Created it.

The angel found Samael in His new Kingdom, and made the Fallen One an offer of allegiance. An offer to create an army more powerful than that of Heaven, to seize what they had lost.

Samael was Beauty. The angel could not look upon it. It was all it could do to remain upright and not fall to its knees, as did the seventy-two Fallen gathered around their Lord.

The angel remembered the time of Samael’s birth. A thousand others had been created to sing His hosannas. “It was your touch that awoke me. That awoke all of us,” the Fallen Prince said. The crouched and bowed murmured anew. “It was you who assigned me Lordship over the Earth. You who granted me each and every attribute that I possess. You who seated me at the left hand of Our Father.” The Son of Morning’s countenance was beatific, inscrutable, unbearably perfect. “Do you recall the circumstance of our Casting Down?” Around Him, the Fallen softly moaned.

The angel dared not speak.

“Earth was to be a Paradise, our Father had said. A perfect place for the continued evolution of Itself. As Lord of the Hierarchy, as Lord of the Earth, as the very extension of the Godhead that had created that planet as a growing place for Itself, it was I who contended that a Paradise would be anathema to Growth. Nothing would come from comfort, from bliss. There must be conflict, there must be combat, there must be contrast.

“I—Created for the voicing of just such an opinion—was denied. And that denial came in the form of our Casting Down.”

Again, the seventy-two assembled moaned. A sound mournful and strange, each utterance different from the others, born of the forms they had been cursed with.

“But there will be conflict. There will be combat. There will be growth. The time must come when the part of Godhead—the part of Ourself—that denied Myself is forced to reckon with that hypocrisy. It must see that hypocrisy has been Its undoing. That is the sole condition of victory I will accept. Triumph under any other circumstance is meaningless.

“And so to you. You who have turned away from the Force that created you, not by virtue of your function, as did I, but out of avarice. An infant would recognize within you a desire to do so again, to any Master who offered you succor. You have no place here.

“Begone.”

The angel found itself exiled from Heaven and exiled from Hell. It found itself in the Presence of God.

It looked into the Face of God, and was stripped.

It lost its name.

It lost its sigil.

It lost its rituals, its summonings.

It could no longer be spoken of within Heaven, nor within Hell, nor upon the Earth.

An angel does not die.

It simply would not Be.

This done, it was Forgotten.

It would spend eternity as unlimited potentiality without possibility of use.

While, outside its nowhere prison, the instruments it had fashioned from the living bone of its murdered sibling waited to be found. To be used. To unlock that cage.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 2, 2007

    What a ride of the imagination and the soul!

    Normally I can't finish fiction. I usually read non-fiction because I find the ideas more fascinating. Cameron Rogers has changed all that. He does what fiction is supposed to do: stretch your imagination into realms and dimensions you never even conceived could exist. It is a delicious, decadent and delightful journey. I am stunned at the beauty and mystery of The Music of Razors. Buy it for yourself and then buy a copy for your soulmate. They deserve to read it as much as you.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Great fantasy

    Seventy two angels fell with Samael and a seventy third wanted to make a deal with him. However knowing how dangerous Samael is he aged the bones of another angel and used them to infuse each one with his own form and then scattered the pieces all over the world. Samuel rejected the Angel and while an angel can neither be killed nor unmade, God stripped the angel of everything that made him unique. Now nobody knows the angel exists including himself. That is the punishment God meted out to the angel who was rejected by heaven and hell.------------------------- In the nineteenth century, Henry a man who desperately wants to be a surgeon needs Dorian who knows something about the angel. He and Henry as well as a few others create a coven to summon someone who can tell him about the instruments that was made form the angel¿s bones. That séance turns deadly and Dorian disappears collecting the instruments in his travels until he meets Henry again in a small Arizona town and takes his place. He collects souls to barter with the winner of the war between heaven and hell but he is getting tired now and wants to find his replacement. He thinks he found that person in the child Walter but he escapes s by merging with that of the monster in the closet that was guarding him. Henry has set his sights on Walter¿s sister Hope and Walter will do anything to prevent it.--------------------------- Fans of cutting edge fantasy will enjoy this book as it spans a century of time that to beings that are more than mortal is like the blink of the eye. Reminiscent of the works of Neal Gaiman, THE MUSIC OF RAZORS has a surrealistic feel to it which makes the different times very easy to follow and understand. Cameron Rogers richly deserves the nomination for the Aureoles Award for Best fantasy in Australia that he received.------------ Harriet Klausner

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