Nathaniel Gordon walks two worlds—that of the living and the dead. Barely human, he's earned the reputation of a Bonekeeper, the scourge of grave robbers. He believes his old life over, until one dreary burial he meets the woman he once loved and almost married.
Lenore Kenward stands at her father’s grave, begging the protection of the mysterious guardian, not knowing he is her lost love. Resolved to keep his distance, Nathaniel is forced to abandon his plan and accompany Lenore on a journey into the mouth of Hell where sea meets sky, and the abominations that exist beyond its barrier wait to destroy them.
GASLIGHT HADES is a 39k-word novella-length gaslamp fantasy romance with a sprinkling of airships, monsters and ghosts. This story may also be found in the duology, Beneath a Waning Moon, alongside an Elizabeth Hunter tale.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This novella in the steampunk romance genre tells the story of Lenore Kenward and Nathaniel Gordon; a young couple who both have lost much in recent years. Heartbroken, Lenore has just buried her beloved father and so beseeches help from the Guardian of the graveyard known as the Bonekeeper who protects the departed from grave robbers. Lenore does not realize she is speaking to her lost love except perhaps on a visceral level. Nathaniel had been saved from death in a macabre way by a scientist trying to play God. His feet planted both in the worlds of the living and the dead, Nathaniel feels he will never have the chance to be with Lenore again, but resolves to protect her however he can. A rift between dimensions was opened in their world by greedy men seeking power and in doing so, they allowed terrible monsters into the breech where many good men and women, including Nathaniel, have been terribly injured or lost their lives. Lenore assisted as an apprentice to her father, an inventor/engineer, for engines on the powerful airships that serve the country as well as take crews to the battle zone. She desires to work on one of those ships under a captain who is a dear friend rather than be relegated to the dreary life of ladies’ companion or nanny. Lenore’s mother is horrified as well as Nathaniel, who does not want the one most precious to him in the world to take such a risk. As a Bonekeeper, Nathaniel’s spectral appearance and supernatural abilities make him an object of awe and fear. Lenore does not fear him and feels very drawn to this man who straddles the lines of life and death making her feel strangely alive again. Ms. Draven’s unique stories have a very pleasing mix of romance and adventure without the passion being maudlin, or the adventure overarching the whole story. A theme of deep and abiding love going beyond the physical appearance predominates her work, shining out in a sea of stories where characters often defined by their perfect looks. Whether are or not you are a fan of steampunk or Victorian England, this story stands on its own merits for love lost and found, brave men and women sacrificing for their country, and a reminder that hope shines a light in the darkest of places.