Dreadnought: A Novel of the Clockwork Century

Dreadnought: A Novel of the Clockwork Century

by Cherie Priest
4.4 85

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Overview

Dreadnought: A Novel of the Clockwork Century by Cherie Priest

Nurse Mercy Lynch is elbows deep in bloody laundry at a war hospital in Richmond, Virginia, when Clara Barton comes bearing bad news: Mercy’s husband has died in a POW camp. On top of that, a telegram from the west coast declares that her estranged father is gravely injured, and he wishes to see her. Mercy sets out toward the Mississippi River. Once there, she’ll catch a train over the Rockies and—if the telegram can be believed—be greeted in Washington Territory by the sheriff, who will take her to see her father in Seattle.

Reaching the Mississippi is a harrowing adventure by dirigible and rail through war-torn border states. When Mercy finally arrives in St. Louis, the only Tacoma-bound train is pulled by a terrifying Union-operated steam engine called the Dreadnought. Reluctantly, Mercy buys a ticket and climbs aboard.

What ought to be a quiet trip turns deadly when the train is beset by bushwhackers, then vigorously attacked by a band of Rebel soldiers. The train is moving away from battle lines into the vast, unincorporated west, so Mercy can’t imagine why they’re so interested. Perhaps the mysterious cargo secreted in the second and last train cars has something to do with it?

Mercy is just a frustrated nurse who wants to see her father before he dies. But she’ll have to survive both Union intrigue and Confederate opposition if she wants to make it off the Dreadnought alive.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781429943642
Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates
Publication date: 09/28/2010
Series: Clockwork Century , #2
Sold by: Macmillan
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 613,894
File size: 444 KB

About the Author

CHERIE PRIEST is the author of Boneshaker, the first book in the Clockwork Century series, and several other novels. She lives in Seattle, and keeps a popular blog at cmpriest.livejournal.com.

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Dreadnought (Clockwork Century Series) 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 82 reviews.
SteveTheDM More than 1 year ago
"Dreadnought" is, at it's core, the story of Mercy Lynch and her journey from a field hospital in an alternate-history Civil War to her far-off estranged father dying in Seattle, and the adventures she had along the way. (Which include the Steampunk standard airships and massive battle machines, along with other stuff.) So in essence, this is a travel adventure. Now, I've read a number of travel adventures, and except for a small few (The Lord of the Rings comes to mind), they've been pretty lousy. That's because they're a collection of nearly unrelated episodes, which works all right for a television show, but not generally for a novel. Priest avoids that gimmick, and actually gives us an exciting journey. The protagonist, Mercy Lynch, a confederate nurse, is smart, capable, and fun to learn about. The war machines and people she meets are all compelling and interesting. Her goal, reaching the west coast, is neither a Union or Confederate goal, and so who the "bad guys" are keeps changing, which is an neat twist. Much of the difficulty I had with Priest's earlier novel in this world, "Boneshaker", which basically amounted to confusion in the chaos of battle, is much reduced in "Dreadnought". When the action gets heaviest, it's still a bit difficult to follow the action, but the less chaotic stuff is much better this time around. This was a fun read, and if you're at all interested in the growing Steampunk mini-genre, you should give this book a shot. 4.5 of 5 stars.
harstan More than 1 year ago
At a Richmond hospital nurses like Mercy Lynch do everything from patient care to scrubbing blood from laundry. It is in the laundry room; Clara Barton finds Mercy and informs her that her husband died in a POW camp. Mentally and physically exhausted, Mercy receives a telegram from the Pacific Northwest informing her that her father was recently injured and dying. He wants to see her one last time. Though estranged, Mercy decides to take the dangerous trip across the continent to Seattle in the Washington territories. The trek by rail and air across the war ravaged Confederacy to St. Louis is dangerous and the dirigible she rides crash lands after shots punctured it. In St. Louis, Mercy boards the steam engine Dreadnaught heading to Tacoma. On the Union train, Mercy meets Texas Ranger Horatio Korman who has an undercover mission he conceals form her. The trip West of the Mississippi proves dangerous though most of the Civil War battles are on the other side of the mighty river. Confederate soldiers attack, which makes Mercy wonder what cargo they carry in the forbidden cars. Worse a Mexican zombie unit assaults the train. Used to death but not the undead, Mercy may be weary, but the intrepid female vows soldiers, rangers, zombies and other ilk will not prevent her from achieving her personal quest. The sequel to Boneshaker, Dreadnaught is a super steampunk Civil War fantasy. The courageous bone tired Mercy, who overcomes her PTSD, keeps the exciting story line focused. However, it is Cherie Priest's grim dark 1860s Americana landscape including the aptly named train that makes for a great harrowing historical thriller. Harriet Klausner
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Best book of the series so far! Dreadnought is a hell of a ride. Mercy Lynch, a Confederate nurse and widow to a Union soldier, is a wonderful character with depth and strength that made me love her from the beginning. She sets off across the war-torn country on a quest to find her father, far off in the poisoned city of Seattle, and finds a whole other adventure she didn't expect. Priest does a wonderful job of showing both the horror and complexity of war and the people caught up in it. The action will keep you reading long after your bed time.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Much more interesting plot than boneshaker
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TankerDude More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed Boneshaker so I looked forward to Dreadnought. The first half or maybe even three-quarters of the book is very good. But the last portion ruined it for me. You have to suspend disbelief for these stories but this one stretched what was a rather plausible story line into implausibility and just downright repetition near the end. The last half also just seemed to lack the real depth presented in Boneshaker.
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