This is a Steampunk M/M Romance novella, and quite frankly – there should be more of these types of stories… but I want novels people! Series-es of novels! Don’t leave me wanting so much more! (Please point me towards them if you know of more!)
I liked the post-crisis world of disastrous devices and the lives scarred by their consequences (hmm that sounds unkind – it was cool ok?) I liked the Chinese ghetto of a Steampunked San Francisco (wait St. Francisco – not sure where we are meant to be actually but I’m going to assume America-ish). I liked the spunky grandmother who loves tea and her gay grandson and wants to apprentice to the dreaded Toymaker. I liked the Toymaker himself and his hairless clockworky cyborg cat, and his terrible exploited past, and his terrible wonderful inventions (uh wanted more of ALL of these, damn novellas). I liked our dashing rich viscount patron swooping in, although felt that he was a bit remiss in tossing his new lover into a festering gang of peerage gossips and corrupted privileged rapists while he had a heart to heart with his grandmother (sheesh).
I wanted more about the technology that was hinted at, but there simply wasn’t room for it. As I’ve said, I don’t like the length / scope of this tale, but then that’s me. Novellas are hard on me. I invariably get to the last page (sneaky e-reader of mine sometimes hides that it’s coming) and shout “WHAT?!” because I hate that it’s over. I know novellas are the new black or something, but please, can we number them and string them together like beads so I can get a real fix here? Prequels and sequels please! Nuff said.
PS If there was a Clockwork Orange meaningful reference, sadly this reader missed it.
PSS The author paid me the honour of granting me an ARC for this review. In return, I poke her to write more! POKE. And hope to spread the word that she is worthy of your support. She is also working much too hard and has furry folk to feed (although not hairless I should think).