The Lazarus Machine

The Lazarus Machine

by Paul Crilley


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Steampunk adventure for fans of Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Who An alternate 1895, A world where Charles Babbage and Ada Lovelace perfected the Difference Engine. Where steam and Tesla-powered computers are everywhere. Where automatons powered by human souls venture out into the sprawling London streets. Where the Ministry, a secretive government agency, seeks to control everything in the name of the Queen. It is in this claustrophobic, paranoid city that seventeen-year old Sebastian Tweed and his conman father struggle to eke out a living. But all is not well. A murderous, masked gang has moved into London, spreading terror through the criminal ranks as they take over the underworld. As the gang carves up more and more of the city, a single name comes to be uttered in fearful whispers, Professor Moriarty. When Tweed's father is kidnapped by Moriarty, he is forced to team up with information broker, Octavia Nightingale, to track him down. But he soon realizes that his father's disappearance is just a tiny piece of a political conspiracy that could destroy the British Empire and plunge the world into a horrific war.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Crilley's newest is a wild ride....Even the setting is intriguing: an alternate 1895 complete with computers, automation and a super-secret government agency. You'll love the quirky one-liners and the nonstop action."
-RT Book Reviews, Compelling- Page-turner)

"At times witty and snarky as well as suspenseful and terrifying, this story grabs readers immediately and propels them along the streets of London in what is an alternate 1895. Automatons, computers and steam engines give this book a feel both futuristic and fantastical. The instant connection between Tweed and Nightingale is believable and the reader will eagerly await the sequel to see what is in store for these two. …Even those readers who do not embrace the steampunk genre will love the pacing and mystery of this story. Highly recommended for ages 12 and older."
-SWON Libraries, ROYAL Reviews

"An excellent steampunk YA adventure novel.... If you like your action/heist tales dressed up in goggles and greatcoats, this is a perfect choice."
-Steampunk Canada

"If you're a fan of mysteries, science fiction, and witty dialogue you'll definitely want to pick up a copy of The Lazarus Machine!"
-Literary Exploration

"One of the richest Steampunk stories I have read, period."
-Justin's Book Blog

School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up—This steampunk novel, set in an alternate version of 1895, features characters from the classic Sherlock Holmes tales. Sebastian Tweed and his con-man dad live on the fringes of society until his father is abducted. Sebastian realizes that the rumors are true; Professor Moriarty and his gang are back in London. Octavia Nightingale also suspects that Moriarty is linked to her mother's disappearance and has dedicated herself to gathering information ever since. The two form a partnership after Tweed is referred to Nightingale in his search for answers. The protagonists escape assassination attempts and look for clues while utilizing Tesla-powered computers and automatons powered by the souls of deceased humans. What they uncover is a Frankenstein-inspired plot to take over parliament and incite a world war. With Nightingale's mother still missing and the queen putting the pair on retainer, a Tweed & Nightingale series is clearly in the works. While the setting and themes of this book will be well recognized, interesting characters, well-written dialogue, and a fast-paced plot keep it from feeling like a predictable collection of clichés. Some classic mystery fans may be put off by the prevalence of steampunk terminology, but sci-fi and fantasy readers will likely be drawn to this fun, genre-bending novel.—Sunnie Sette, New Haven Public Library, CT

Kirkus Reviews

A series opener, Crilley's steampunk adventure follows an unlikely duo to the underworld of Victorian London. Coldly rational and from the bad part of town, Tweed is 17 when his father is kidnapped. Headstrong and highborn, Octavia is about the same age, only her mother has been missing a year, so she has had more time to gather facts on the likely culprits. A nebulous Ministry is at the center of their suspicions, as are the resurrected characters of Professor Moriarty and Sherlock Holmes and a nefarious mastermind. Octavia's father turns a blind eye to her comings and goings, and Tweed has no mother, but the two receive help from a mildly entertaining couple Tweed and his father know. This seemingly low-bred pair of lovebirds adds one of the few human touches to a story that is too full of gadgets and machinations for most readers to keep track of. The primary action of the book is a break-in at the Ministry beneath London that Tweed and Octavia execute with success, only to find all is not what they expected. Though the style of writing is simple and engaging enough, the story itself goes in too many directions to follow, leaving open too many loose ends for readers to know exactly what they are looking for in the next installment. Too complicated to engage. (Steampunk. 12 & up)

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781616146887
Publisher: Pyr
Publication date: 11/06/2012
Series: Tweed & Nightingale Series , #1
Pages: 263
Product dimensions: 5.80(w) x 8.80(h) x 1.20(d)
Age Range: 13 - 17 Years

Customer Reviews