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The Bullet-Catcher's Daughter (Fall of the Gas-Lit Empire Series #1)
     

The Bullet-Catcher's Daughter (Fall of the Gas-Lit Empire Series #1)

3.5 4
by Rod Duncan
 

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Finalist for the 2014 Phillip K. Dick Award

Elizabeth Barnabus lives a double life – as herself and as her brother, the private detective. She is trying to solve the mystery of a disappearing aristocrat and a hoard of arcane machines. In her way stand the rogues, freaks and self-proclaimed alchemists of a travelling circus.

But when she comes up

Overview

Finalist for the 2014 Phillip K. Dick Award

Elizabeth Barnabus lives a double life – as herself and as her brother, the private detective. She is trying to solve the mystery of a disappearing aristocrat and a hoard of arcane machines. In her way stand the rogues, freaks and self-proclaimed alchemists of a travelling circus.

But when she comes up against an agent of the all-powerful Patent Office, her life and the course of history will begin to change. And not necessarily for the better…

File UnderFantasy

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
06/23/2014
Steeped in illusion and grounded in an alternative history of the Luddite Rebellion, Duncan’s strong supernatural mystery serves ably as both a standalone adventure and the start to a series. A rebellion has divided the United Kingdom into two republics. The prose’s arch-Victorian tone establishes both character and place in the voice of the admirably driven Elizabeth Barnabus, who poses as her nonexistent twin brother, Edwin, in order to work as a private detective in the starchy, straight-laced Anglo-Scottish Republic. Strategically placed steampunk tropes inform but do not overwhelm Elizabeth’s headlong quest to find a missing aristocrat sought by the Patent Office, which is fixated on both achieving perfection and eliminating “unseemly science.” A hazardous border crossing into the permissively corrupt Kingdom of England and Southern Wales provides ample excitement, and a glossary at the novel’s conclusion hints enticingly at a much more involved story to come. (Sept.)
From the Publisher
“Steeped in illusion and grounded in an alternative history of the Luddite Rebellion, Duncan’s strong supernatural mystery serves ably as both a standalone adventure and the start to a series…Strategically placed steampunk tropes inform but do not overwhelm Elizabeth’s headlong quest to find a missing aristocrat sought by the Patent Office, which is fixated on both achieving perfection and eliminating “unseemly science.” A hazardous border crossing into the permissively corrupt Kingdom of England and Southern Wales provides ample excitement, and a glossary at the novel’s conclusion hints enticingly at a much more involved story to come.”
Publishers Weekly

“I was completely caught up in her adventure and her plight. I think steampunk readers and fantasy/sci-fi readers will enjoy this one, so I’m recommending it for them even though (and to some extent because) its use of steampunk is a bit different. I found it to be a refreshing change from more formulaic steampunk novels.”
Popcorn Reads

“A detective story with a difference … Chapters begin with quotes from the legendary Bullet-Catcher’s Handbook, phrases that introduce not only the idea of illusion that pervades the novel, but also the author’s sly humour. [Duncan’s misdirection is] subtly and well done, all the way through the book, right to a neat little twist at the end, a play on the title that had me nodding in approval. Each [character] is vividly portrayed, lively enough to feel like the heroes of their own stories, all with distinctive voices; it’s always a good sign when you find yourself reading dialogue out loud, rolling your lips and tongue around the words. Rod Duncan’s talent has combined inventive plot and characterisation to create a smart, amusing and fascinating tale that had me reading long into the night.”
Fantasy Faction

“It’s all steampunk and circus wonder as we follow the adventures of Elizabeth Barnabas.The double crosses along the way keep the plot tight and fun, and the conclusion sets us up nicely for book two.”
The Washington Post, Best New Science Fiction and Steampunk

Library Journal
08/01/2014
Regent Geder Palliako and the priests of the spider goddess are an unstoppable force sweeping the land, but all the victories and violence mean nothing compared to the woman with whom he is obsessed. This penultimate book in the series (after The Tyrant's Law) sets the stage for an epic finale.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780857665300
Publisher:
Watkins Media
Publication date:
08/26/2014
Series:
Fall of the Gas-Lit Empire Series , #1
Pages:
384
Sales rank:
205,484
Product dimensions:
4.20(w) x 6.80(h) x 1.30(d)

Meet the Author

Rod Duncan is a published crime writer. His first novel Backlash was shortlisted for the CWA John Creasey Dagger, and he has since written three other novels (all Simon & Schuster UK), and had his first screenplay produced.

His background is in scientific research and computing, and he lives in Leicester.

You can find Rod online at www.rodduncan.co.ukand follow him @RodDuncan on Twitter.

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The Bullet-Catcher's Daughter 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
In this novel, Elizabeth Barnabus is a woman on her own in a world that resembles Victorian England, which is a part of The Gas-Lit Empire. As you can imagine, it’s practically impossible for Elizabeth to conduct any business, own any property, or hold a well-paying job as a single woman, so she solves this problem by masquerading as her own twin brother, a trick she learned from her father as a part of her act in a traveling circus. As a man, Elizabeth works at night as a private investigator of sorts. She’s hired to find the missing brother of an aristocratic woman, along the way, Elizabeth encounters some interesting steampunk technology as well as a legendary traveling circus run by a mysterious and possibly nefarious old man. The story moves along at a quick pace, and I found that I couldn’t put the book down for very long. This is my official introduction to the steampunk genre, and I really enjoyed it. I can’t wait to get my hands on more fiction like this, and I’m eagerly anticipating the sequel!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thoroughly enjoyed the pace of this book as well as the unique voice.
Ursula4400 More than 1 year ago
It took me a while to get into this world, but once I did, it was remarkable. I look forward to the next in the series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Genre Combos you still have a muddle with several sub genres combos when you mix all your basic watercolors together if you remember first grade you get muddy mess not a rainbow master one genre before branching out