A century after a devastating volcanic eruption forced Iceland's inhabitants to abandon its shores, the island has become enshrouded in legend. But the truth behind the legends is mechanical, not magical—and the mystery of the island a matter of life and death for a community of women who once spilled noble blood to secure their freedom.
Five years ago, Annika unwittingly endangered that secret, but her sister Källa took the blame and was exiled. Now Annika serves on an airship, searching for her sister and longing to return home. But that home is threatened when scientific expedition leader David Kentewess comes aboard, looking to expose Annika's secrets. Then disaster strikes, leaving David and Annika stranded on a glacier and pursued by a madman, with their very survival depending on keeping the heat rising between them—and generating lots of steam . . .
(Description from Goodreads)
Genre: Romance, Fantasy, Steampunk
Series: Iron Seas #3
Does the series need to be read in order? No
- The world-building is amazing. You can tell that the author has the world completely sculpted in her head. Each place has its own feel and history and people. It's a cornucopia of stories to be told, and I want to read them all.
- There are plenty of steampunk devices - airships, clockwork dogs, nano-agents, mechanical prosthetic limbs, and much more. The technology is neatly integrated into the story so I never felt like it was a collection of "look at the cool things my brain invented."
- Annika and David are fascinating, layered characters. I loved getting to know them almost as much as they loved getting to know each other.
- There is no insta-lust. I don't always mind insta-lust but I very much appreciated the slow-developing romance between David and Annika. Many times I found myself grinning like a fool as things progressed so sweetly.
- The sexy scenes are hot and well-written. Ms. Brooks doesn't fall into any over-used phrases typical to romances (flat, male nipples anyone?). As with everything else, the sex is well-integrated into the plot.
- About 50% of the way through the book, shit gets real. I was already enjoying the story immensely, but then the action really got ratcheted up and I loved it even more.
- Liked Less
- I wish we'd seen Annika's home. Maybe in another book in the series?
- Clarity - 5/5 - Words and names were very easy to understand, even with differing accents.
- Differentiation Between Characters - 4/5 - It was fairly easy to tell the difference between characters speaking in conversations. There were a couple rare moments of confusion.
- Sound Levels - 5/5 - I never had to adjust the volume because the sound levels were too different i.e. suddenly too loud or too quiet.
- Overall Performance - 4.5/5 - Excellent voice acting.
- Audio Version Recommended? Yes
Queen of Swords
Amazing! Why aren't you buying this book right now?
I will be buying up this author's entire backlist.
Disclosure: I purchased this book.