The Kraken King Part III: The Kraken King and the Fox's Den

The Kraken King Part III: The Kraken King and the Fox's Den

by Meljean Brook

NOOK Book(eBook)

View All Available Formats & Editions

Available on Compatible NOOK Devices and the free NOOK Apps.
WANT A NOOK?  Explore Now

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781101639221
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/29/2014
Series: A Novel of the Iron Seas
Sold by: Penguin Group
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 106
Sales rank: 501,048
File size: 1 MB
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Meljean Brook lives in Oregon with her family. She is the author of the Guardian series and the Iron Seas steampunk romance series.

Read an Excerpt

Altun Mining Camp, Nyungar Territory

Southwestern Australia

May 22

My dear brother,

In the past two days, I have received four offers of marriage. Either I have bloomed into a ravishing beauty on this route from Krakentown to the smugglers’ dens, or the men in Altun are desperate enough to ask for the hand of any female passing through.

I suspect it is the latter. I’m told that gold was discovered in the region a dozen years ago and the population of this town swelled to over ten thousand souls. Only a few prospectors remain now, unless their ghosts are residing in the abandoned buildings, and the men outnumber the women twenty to one.

The town’s blacksmith was the first to ask me—not because he was the most eager, but because his shop was the first we visited after my hired man Cooper was injured by a boilerworm. I might have been hasty refusing his proposal. The blacksmith has proved quite competent while treating Cooper, and he possesses a great many tools in his workshop. If he learned how susceptible I am to men who bathe more than once every year, he would have leapt into a tub that very moment, and my heart would be in certain danger. But he hasn’t washed, so I will continue on to the Red City and live with the regret of knowing that happiness was within my reach, but the soap was unfortunately not.

Still a wretched and lonely widow,


Chapter Nine

Zenobia sighed as she folded the letter. She’d already warned Archimedes to stay away from Krakentown, so there was no need to send another message in code, but guarding her identity had forced her into the habit of caution. Therefore her letter said almost nothing, except that she was alive and traveling to the Red City via the smugglers’ dens.

There was much more she would have liked to tell her brother. But within a few months, she would be able to tell him in person. When he learned of the attack on the airship, nothing would stop Archimedes and his wife from coming. But at least they would fly to the Red City instead of Krakentown, where he might be recognized as the smuggler Wolfram Gunther-Baptiste.

One day, she might write a story inspired by that part of his career. She would call it The Idiot Smuggler Who Destroyed the Horde Rebellion’s War Machines and Changed His Name to Avoid the Rebel Assassins.

Zenobia would take pity on the idiot’s sister and leave her out of the tale.

She doused the candle. Above the desk, shutters listed on rusted pegs, letting in triangles of early-morning light. Helene lay sleeping on their makeshift pallet. They’d had their pick of abandoned houses when they’d arrived in Altun, though few were larger than shacks and even fewer had furnishings. The blacksmith had pointed them toward a recently vacated home—which, happily, wasn’t a shack, but more like the residence she and Helene had shared in Krakentown.

Quietly, she left Helene sleeping and made her way down the stairs to the courtyard. Unlike Krakentown, which kept the boilerworms away by driving steel posts into the ground around the perimeter, the buildings in Altun stood on stilts. If a boilerworm attacked, nothing could protect the structures. But the distance between the houses and the ground helped keep the cooking fires and furnaces from attracting the monsters.

The garden in the courtyard had grown wild. Zenobia rather liked the unkempt look of it. She liked the decorations on the building walls, the wood carved in shapes of lions and trees and flowers, then painted red and gold. The paint was peeling now and the rooms were empty except for dust, but there were stories here. The shacks in town were to be expected—just temporary quarters for hopeful prospectors. But someone had tried to make a permanent home in this place. Yet still they’d left. Why?

Someone might know the story. Zenobia would like to hear it. But if she never learned it, she would make up her own.

A happy family. A jealous villain. A flick of a spark lighter, and they’d all been eaten by boilerworms.

She should probably continue writing Lady Lynx’s adventures instead of trying her hand at family dramas.

The door to the Coopers’ quarters was one of the few with the intricate latticework screen still intact. Zenobia tapped on the wood and it folded open to reveal Mara, her dark eyes rimmed in red. Her glossy cheeks told Zenobia that the mercenary had been crying. The hitch in her breath said the crying wasn’t quite over.

Behind her, Cooper sat propped against a cushion. Bandages wrapped his mutilated legs. His lean face was a mask—but not from pain. Between the healing nanoagents in his blood and the opium, he wouldn’t be in much discomfort. But something was wrong. His jaw was hard and his back stiff, and temper burned behind Mara’s tears. The room seemed thick with tension, as if words hung in the air waiting to be spoken—or shouted.

Had they been fighting? Oh, Zenobia didn’t want to know. She just wanted to go somewhere else, anywhere the air was easier to breathe.

“I’m so sorry. I’ll come back.”

“It’s fine.” With a voice as stiff as her husband’s spine, Mara stopped her. “Are you all right?”

“Yes!” And that response was far too chirpy. “I wanted to let you know that I was going out to mail this letter.”

“You want me with you?”

“No. I just . . . didn’t want you to worry if you noticed I was gone.” Not that there were many places in town to go—or be taken to. Zenobia glanced at Cooper and hesitated. The bandages covering the stumps of his legs were new. “Did the blacksmith already visit? What did he say?”

“That any prosthetics he creates here will be crude compared to what Cooper used to have, but there are blacksmiths in the smugglers’ dens who can do the work. So we can travel if you’re ready to continue on.”

Zenobia was, but didn’t know if that was true of everyone. “I’ll ask the governor when I see him next.” It was ridiculous how much she looked forward to whenever that might be. “And your ear?”

Mara’s gaze shuttered. “It’s better. I’m not hearing at full range yet. But I will be with a few more days’ healing.”

“Of course.” At full range or not, Zenobia was just glad that Mara hadn’t suffered permanent damage when the bomb had detonated—and even if her hearing device didn’t work, her aim would still be true.

She turned to go, but Mara stopped her again. “Cooper and I won’t be at our full capabilities when we reach the smugglers’ dens. You should think of hiring someone else for the duration.”

And there it was. Zenobia’s throat closed. She’d expected this, hadn’t she? From the moment of the airship attack. She’d hired them to guard a writer. They’d expected to live in a quiet town in Denmark and to prevent a few kidnappings while they settled down and started a family. Instead they’d been dragged along on a trip to the wilds of Australia, and suffered attacks from marauders and a boilerworm. Cooper had almost been killed.

Now Mara told her to hire someone else. Only temporarily, but likely a way to ease their separation from her in a few months when their contract came up for renewal. God knew where Zenobia would find any guards that she liked as well—or that she could trust.

But perhaps liking them and trusting them was the problem. They were her guards, yet they’d become her friends, and she could hardly bear seeing her friends hurt like this.

She should begin hiring people she wanted to see dead. That would be far more practical.

“I will consider it,” Zenobia said, then left as fast as she could. She couldn’t outrun the ache in her chest.

Outside, quiet greeted her. Their residence lay a short distance from the center of the once-prosperous mining camp. Now ponies grazed between tumbledown shacks, lifting their heads to watch her pass, their tails flicking away flies. Weeds grew on abandoned wagons and steamcarts. She’d joked of ghosts in her letter, but away from the main street it truly seemed that little else was left in this town—and what remained didn’t look as if it would last much longer.

A weathered box on stilts, the sundry shop stood across from the blacksmith’s. To her surprise, Meeng sat on the rickety stairs. The Wajarri man looked half-asleep, eyes closed against the sun. Though he couldn’t see her, Zenobia lifted her hand in greeting, because everything within her was lifting a little bit. Meeng’s presence meant the governor had returned. After the boilerworm attack he’d brought an injured Cooper to Altun, then left the next morning with his men to search for the marauders’ camp in the nearby hills. Zenobia had believed they were still out looking, but they must have returned during the night.

Nearing the sundry shop, she finally said “Good morning.” She and Meeng didn’t share any languages in common, but passing him without a greeting seemed unpardonably rude.

He peeked one eyelid open and peered up at her face before closing his eye again.

Well. Maybe disturbing him was unpardonably rude, too.

Heavy steps sounded from inside the shop. The governor appeared a moment later. Pulse suddenly thumping, Zenobia stopped at the bottom of the stairs. Her body never seemed to behave itself near him, and she feared her feet might trip along with her heart.

So silly. But it didn’t matter. This was only for a few more days.

“Good morning, Governor!” Though perhaps it wasn’t a good one for him. His posture was as straight as ever and his stride long and firm, but when he came down the stairs each movement seemed slow and deliberate, as if he was weighed down by a burden and being careful not to tip it. And no wonder. The safety of his town depended on his discovering the marauders. “Were you able to find the camp?”

“We did.”

That was all he said before looking away from her to speak with Meeng. No smile, no “Good morning,” no telling her what he’d found.

The tightness in her chest returned. This was the first time he hadn’t given her his immediate attention, as if he pushed everything aside to focus on her. The first time he didn’t seem glad to see her.

It didn’t matter. A few more days, and he’d never see her again.

She brushed past him and climbed the stairs to the shop entrance. Bags of dry goods leaned against the walls and tins sat on half-empty shelves. Brightly colored woven blankets hung above bolts of drab cloth. Rows of bins held neatly sorted tick-tocks and tools, all labeled in a language Zenobia couldn’t read. Bottles lined the shelf over the register—medicine or liquor, she wasn’t sure. Probably liquor. Medicine usually came in smaller quantities than drink did.

Though the surfaces were clean, everything smelled of dust. An old man with wisps of black hair covering his pate stood behind the counter, polishing the scale.

“I was told that you have a post service,” Zenobia said, hoping that the ten thousand souls who’d passed through this town had brought the western trader’s language with them.

Apparently they had. He put away his rag and shuffled along the counter. “I do,” he said—heavily accented, but in French. “Though I cannot promise it will go before the year end.”

“There’s no rush.” If she didn’t arrive in the Red City and Archimedes had to go searching for her in the smugglers’ dens, then the worst had already happened. The letter would just tell him where to look for her bones. She scanned the shelves. “Do you sell pen nibs?”

“In that second bin.”

“How much?”

“A denier each.”

Absurd. “I will pay a denier for five.”

And even that was generous.

The shopkeeper shook his head. “You won’t find nibs anywhere else in town.”

“Perhaps not. But I am not in dire need of one today, and by tomorrow I’ll be in the smugglers’ dens. I daresay that it will be easier for me to find nibs there than it will be for you to find more customers here.”

Through narrowed eyes, the old man stared her down. Zenobia didn’t relent.

“Three for a denier,” he finally said.

Good enough. She searched through the bin he’d indicated, aware of him watching her as she picked out three nibs. She returned to the counter.

Her gold coin clinked dully when he dropped it on the scale. Zenobia didn’t look away from his hands when he added the counterweight. Thumbs had a way of straying onto the pan when women made purchases alone.

He removed the weight and gave her a considering glance. “Do you have a man? My eldest son is up the river. He’s got a strong back. Still has all his hair and teeth.”

“I don’t have a man,” she said. “And I’m not in the market for one.”

“Are you in the market for two, then? I’ve got another son, and you seem woman enough to take on both.”

“Just the pen nibs, please.”

She waited as the shopkeeper weighed the change and wrapped her purchase, trying not to hear the governor’s voice outside. When she left the store, would his manner be as abrupt? They’d last spoken shortly after the boilerworm attack, and all had been well then. She’d thanked him for saving Cooper and he’d teased her about the size of his worm. She couldn’t account for the difference.

But she couldn’t demand the reason for it. Her manner had once changed toward him, too, and she’d never told him why.

That wasn’t the same, though. He’d called her ugly and wanted to know her secrets. She’d done nothing between the last time they’d spoken and now.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

Kraken King 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 29 reviews.
csingh More than 1 year ago
I don't read steampunk often, but I always read Meljean Brook's Iron Seas stories.  She's made this world that's both fascinating and slightly horrifying at the same time and I can never get enough of it. The Kraken King was originally released as a serial and just came out all together in paperback today. I was a little apprehensive because the book focused on Zenobia, and I wasn't sure she would be up to the challenge of the adventure ahead of her, but I was wrong.   I absolutely loved this book.  I thought I'd read a few chapters to whet my appetite, before going to bed, but the next thing I knew it was almost 4 AM and I wasn't going to give in to sleep until I knew what was going to happen to Zenobia and Ariq.  This book was so intense and so amazing.  I felt like I was experiencing the same magic I had in the The Iron Duke, which is my favorite book in the series.  I was on the edge of my seat and I could feel my heart racing as I flipped through the pages.  There were moments when I had to pace and read at the same time because the action was so intense and my emotions wouldn't allow me to sit still. I cried a number of times as events took dangerous and sad turns.   Ariq and Zenobia stole my heart.  I laughed with them, cried with them, held my breath as they got into scrapes I didn't think they were going to make it out of.  I'm actually really glad this book took place outside of England and on the other side of the world.  It allowed me to experience new creatures and to see a completely different side of the Iron Seas world.  There was just as much intrigue there, maybe even more.  This book felt fresher and edgier than the previous two in the series. Ariq was sexy as hell and just as intelligent too.  Zenobia was brave and resourceful. I loved how they looked out for each other.   I don't know how Meljean does it.  Each and every page in this book was something new.  I was unable to stop reading and even when I was finished, I couldn't stop thinking about Ariq, Zenobia, and what they went through. I didn't want to leave them.  It was great to see Yasmeen and Archimedes again and I hope to one day see Rhys and Mina again in another story.  I sincerely hope Meljean will continue writing in this world.  It seems with every book she releases, she hints at so much but reveals so little, leaving me with more and more questions that need to be answered, and a hunger to immerse myself in her worlds.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Am eagerly awaiting next installment
krissysbookshelf More than 1 year ago
Okay Iron Seas fans... Notice the cover in the corner states *The Complete Novel* because as many of us have been dying for it to happen, it is finally here. The Kraken King in its entirety. If you thought the serial ebooks alone were the best ever then just wait for them when you have them all in one place. The biggest thing that frustrated me when the serial first released (ebook form) was having to wait for the next one to come out. I'd have to read the first one wait on the second to come out, then I'd have to reread the first and repeat with the next. Now with the Kraken King in paper back in one book I can devour the whole thing and get a broader scope of the story and also invest in the characters and plot so much more intensely. Everything is better when you get to read The Kraken King from beginning to end in one sitting. You find details you missed before, you become so much more attached than you did before, its great. I absolutely loved the Kraken King the first time around but getting the real thing in my hands is a different experience. I love being able to have the actual print form in front of me because it makes it that much more real and easier to invest in all the way through. The Kraken King is a fantastic tale by Meljean Brook, who in my mind just gets better every time she puts out a new book. The woman is a brick house writer. She builds stories that completely engulf you and the more books she puts out the better she gets. I don't know how she does it but its amazing. I fell in love with Zenobia and Ariq the first time I read The Kraken King and now I get to re-experience that love affair with their story all over again. Its fun, its witty, its exhilarating, and its sexy. I love it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Rich descriptions and great characterization plus a complex plot kept me turning pages while hoping it wouldn't end!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I can see this being a book to read and read and read again.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was so much the love and love the adventure....ahhhhh true love cannot be beat!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
feather_lashes More than 1 year ago
The Kraken King is the fourth installment in Meljean Brook's adult romance/steampunk series titled: Iron Seas. I am a huge fan of this series and have been fortunate to have access to all the audiobooks at my local library. The narration on these is incredible by the way! I highly recommend the audio versions. I am slowly but surely getting through all the novels and novellas...and they are amazing!!! While I enjoyed The Kraken King, I didn't love it quite as much as some of the others. It was VERY long and I definitely felt the length. I think that alone is what prompted the three-star rating from me. However, there was some fun action, suspense, and war-related strategy going on that made the storyline feel incredibly engaging. The steampunk world Ms. Brook has created astounds me with every book I read. The adult romance aspect is also such a treat in this series, although I should note it feels pretty minimal in this one compared to the rest. Readers still get some sexy scenes, but the romance is more of a trust me, marry me, love me type of scenario. There's nothing unsexy about that though. Overall, I liked The Kraken King and would recommend it to followers of the series. According to Ms. Brook's website, she appears to be writing just one more installment before the series end. I am soooooo sad, but all good things must come to a close sometime. I'm just happy I found this series at all. It's been some serious fun!!! Check it out! My favorite quote: “I think the difference is not in the man, but in how many stand behind him.” Note: This story was originally published as a serial novel (a book published in episodes) from April 15, 2014 to June 3, 2014. The order goes like this: #4.1-The Kraken King and the Scribbling Spinster #4.2-The Kraken King and the Abominable Worm #4.3-The Kraken King and the Fox's Den #4.4-The Kraken King and the Inevitable Abduction #4.5-The Kraken King and the Iron Heart #4.6-The Kraken King and the Crumbling Walls #4.7-The Kraken King and the Empress's Eyes #4.8-The Kraken King and the Greatest Adventure The novel was later published in a compiled form (The Kraken King), which is what I read...and thank God for that! I am so done with this serial business. I understand there are both positives and negatives of publishing in this format, but personally as a reader, I tend to only focus on the negatives in terms of serials. I just can't help it. I guess I don't have the patience to wait for another tidbit of a captivating story (which is why I wait and watch TV series all at once when they arrive on Netflix...yeah, I'm one of those people. If I'm not on goodreads for a few days that's why lol.) When reading a serial novel, I view the experience as if you're having a really amazing dream and get rudely woken up in the middle of it and you can't go back to sleep to see what happens next. Actually you can't finish this cliffhanger-ish dream for weeks or sometimes months. In my opinion, it SUCKS! However, I must acknowledge that some readers must enjoy reading in a serial format or else why would more and more authors choose to go this route? Based on Ms. Brook's explanation, she appeared to have her readers' best interests at heart and I can respect that.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this whole series!! This is one of those books that will get read again and again, probably while I am not so patiently waiting for the next one. I cannot wait for the blacksmith story.
Magoozer More than 1 year ago
I love this series and was so not disappointed by this installment. I read through the entire book in a little over a day (who needs sleep?)
Justpeachy1 More than 1 year ago
Meljean Brook brings readers the fourth book in the Iron Seas series, The Kraken King. Some readers may have read this story in it's serialized e-book version with eight separate parts, but the experience of reading it altogether is simply amazing. Brook's world building is unique and complex, her characters are diverse and multi-faceted and her attention to detail provides astounding visual imagery. If you read only one steampunk novel this year, this MUST be the one! What I liked: I have been a fan of steampunk romance since it's inception. This alternative Victorian-esque world is just fascinating to me. But let's face it, this is the kind of sub-genre that either an author gets right or they don't. There are a lot of steampunk author's that just can't quite pull it off. Meljean Brook is not one of them. She is flawless in her execution. Her plots are so intricate and complex. The tension is riveting and the adventure both emotionally and physically are extremely satisfying. This lady knows how to write steampunk and probably anything else she tries her hand at. But I'll have to say, this particular novel is by far her best yet. The Kraken King was originally an eight part serial story and now readers have it all in one place and are able to experience it in a whole new way. The transitions are seamless and Brook couldn't have done it better had it been altogether from the start. I think serial's appeal to readers who like instant gratification, LOL. It gives that that little bit of story the need, almost like a fix. And then they get a little more and a little more. Myself, I prefer to devour it all at one time. I like big, thick books that monopolize my time and energy. But truly I think I would have liked this book any way I could get it! Zenobia was a wise and honest character. She was used to having adventures through her own writing and vicariously through her brother, but she hadn't really experienced it for herself. When she decided to have an adventure, she doesn't go half way and neither does Meljean Brook. Zenobia could be considered a spinster. She is a little backward, but she is resourceful, strong and has a bit of nobility about her. It only seemed natural that she fall in love with a warrior. Ariq was an amazing hero. When readers meet him, he is looking for his brother, who he fears has done himself harm. The depth of his care for his brother mirrored his feelings for his people and I enjoyed seeing that side of him. He was determined to find out what the marauders were up to and who they were working for. But it wasn't just a selfish need to know what was going on. His heart was in the right place and even though he is known for his fierceness and grit, he still shows a vulnerable side, to Zenobia. They were perfect together. The tension both sexually and emotionally was palpable with these two characters. Ariq was sexy and Zenobia was fierce. Their personalities were so perfectly suited for each other. It was amazing watching their romance unfold in the midst of all the action and adventure going on around them. It was a pivotal to the story and Brook makes it seem like a natural occurrence. Like a storm on the horizon. They just keep getting closer and closer. Brook makes the reader believe in happy endings! Bottom Line: This book was simply amazing. If you've ever considered trying steampunk, Meljean Brook is the author and the Iron Seas series is the only place to start. This is my favor
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
AgnosticDyslexicInsomniac More than 1 year ago
She does it again! I love Meljean Brook's books. I didn't think these characters and this greater world building could be so intriguing, but they were. The correspondence between brother an sister are so witty! Grateful that such a talented author keeps sharing her gift.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I admit that I felt led on or somehow cheated by the serial format until I read Ms. Brook's description of why she did it and (embarrassed to say) a dollar per word breakdown (all told its about 700 pages so it really is two mass market paperbacks.) The story. Loved it. I like his sister more than Archimedes (although I like him a lot too) and the Kraken King is a refreshingly straight forward alpha hero.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have been a fan of Meljean Brook and the Iron Seas since first reading "Here There Be Monsters" in the anthology "Burning Up." I have watched for, and snapped up, each new story in this world. The Kraken King lives up to the anticipation. Treat yourself to this serialized story and prepare yourself for a wonderful reading adventure. Write more, Meljean, and hurry! Please!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love the kraken king!! You blew me outta the water again! You sure know how to pull people into your books!! Great series love ya Meljean!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
codemonkeyRS More than 1 year ago
I am enjoying the concept - a serialized novel with each installment ending on a cliff-hanger. and it is what I expected from Meljean Brook and this series - all are well imagined and written.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The shortest section but oh so wonderful. Wow! I'm going to have to read it again every day until the next part. Absolutely loved it. So worth buying!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
FIVE STARS for this series, but one star for having 8 parts to this book and spending over $16 with taxes to buy a paperback book. This trend by the publishing companies to print to books in parts and then later release the entire book for less money is a scam & is ridiculous. I have never left a review, but felt i had to have my say in regard to this trend. The Iron Seas series by Meljean Brooks is one of my favorites and this installment is very good and I truly enjoy reading her books. I know it is not the author who makes the decision about how books are released but felt this was a place to start lodging complaints.
LITERALADDICTION_MLO More than 1 year ago
Our Review, by LITERAL ADDICTION's Vivacious Valkyrie - Marta: *Copy gifted in exchange for an honest review Meljean Brook has taken her popular Iron Seas series which is a gritty steampunk and expanded it to give her readers a taste of the exploits got up to by Zenobia Fox. She's a heroine who finally gets to step up in this new series of adventures set in a romantic almost Victorian world full of pirates, unusual technology and monsters! An alternative reality that leaps off the page to pull the reader into a rip roaring adventure that never lets up! Zenobia is so sick of being tied to her brother Archimedes apron strings and further more she is beyond fed up with the all too frequent kidnapping attempts that she's faced. No what she needs is to get away and find inspiration to write her next novel. Traveling by airship with her friend Helene seems safe enough until they are attacked mid air by marauders!  Zenobias leap to safety doesn't quite go according to plan though and she's rescued by Ariq who turns out to be both a former smuggler and thief! He's also unfortunately known as The Kraken King so telling him her real identity might not be the most sensible thing to do. Zenobia doesn't want to fall into the hands of her brothers enemies but Ariqs hands? What a way to go! The world created by this author is without a doubt top notch! Even those who would not normally read steampunk cannot fail it be blindsided by this. It's such a vibrant picture painted by Ms Brook. We are taken on a journey with Zenobia, such a well brought up young lady and yet she is full of mischief ,quick wit and her sheer enthusiasm for life and all it's mysteries is contagious. She is a very loyal friend and her reasons for traveling with Helene are pulling her in a direction that might not necessarily be safe. As for Ariq? Well he's certainly not backwards in coming forwards! There's no way any one would mistake him for a shy guy! Yet he is also clearly much more than just a romantic lead and there's depth still to be uncovered , fiercely protective and brave. I'm not a huge fan of short novellas as sometimes it can be an expensive way to purchase a book but this author has planned seven or eight instalments which will hopefully all be of a good length. By her own admission Ms Brooks tends to overwrite so that's a plus point for the reader hopefully bringing longer instalments making it a series and not just one novel broken up.  So did I enjoy reading this and will I read more? A huge resounding yes! This authors talent for storytelling is amazing and I can't wait to find out just what's in store for Ariq and Zenobia next.
Caroles_Random_Life More than 1 year ago
Solid start! I received an advance reader edition of this book from Penguin Group and Net Galley for the purpose of providing an honest review. Solid 4 Stars How have I read so many books but somehow missed reading even a single steampunk novel? Beats the heck out of me to be honest. I don't know if it counts for anything but I did see exactly one steampunk movie and I really was not all that impressed to tell the truth. This is the first part of an 8 part serial novel. I actually have not read a serial novel either before beginning this story. This story introduces us to Zenobia and Ariq. Zenobia is an author traveling with a friend and a pair of mercenary guards. When the ship she is traveling in is attacked, they find themselves literally jumping to safety. Next thing you know, Zenobia is being pulled from the water by Ariq, the Kraken King himself. This story pulled me in right away and I can not wait to see where it goes. I found the chemistry between the main characters to be incredible. I think this is going to be a fun story. My one problem with the story is really the fact that it is a serial novel. I do not like to wait and I often get side tracked. I prefer to consume a story in short order from beginning to end so the idea of weekly installment really does not appeal to me at all. I actually fear that I will get side tracked at some point and fail to finish this story which would be a shame because I think it is going to be a good one. I would recommend this story to others as long as they like the serial novel aspect of the story. I had never read anything by Meljean Brooks before. I definitely plan to check out her other works.