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Clementine (2010): Oh, My Darlin’!

Cherie Priest, Clementine (Subterranean Press, 2010)

 

photo credit: thesteampunkreview.blogspot.com

Now widely available…finally!

Cherie Priest follows up one of the most enjoyable series beginnings I’ve read in almost a decade, Boneshaker, with Clementine, a novella that stands as the second entry in the Clockwork Century series. It focuses on a minor but important character from Boneshaker, Captain Croggon Beauregard Hainey, airship pilot extraordinaire. Someone—he’s not sure who—has stolen his beloved, pimped-out airship, the Free Crow. That someone renamed it the Clementine and is currently busting hump to make it to the east coast, with Hainey and his skeleton crew, in a borrowed dirigible, hot on their heels. To throw an added monkeywrench into the works, former Confederate spy Maria Isabella Boyd, now working for the Pinkerton detective agency, has been hired—by the Union army, no less—to detain Captain Hainey by any means necessary, and to ensure that the cargo the newly-christened Clementine is carrying makes it to its destination come hell or high water. And before everyone involved in this mess is finished, both may well have had a say…

the first thing to be said here—and, reasonably, one could also make it the last—is “hey, it’s Cherie Priest, you know it’s going to be ridiculously good.” And it is, a combination of road novel and buddy-cop action novel that’s all sorts of fun, contains just enough crazy steampunk tech to keep the brass geeks happy and more than enough character development and attention to detail for the literary types. In other words, there’s a little something for everyone here, and it’s all equally well done. Don’t start here, though; go back to the beginning and start with the equally wonderful Boneshaker before you pick this up. But once you’ve started that one, you will find yourself wanting to push on through to this one no matter what I tell you. ****

About Robert "Goat" Beveridge

Media critic (amateur, semi-pro, and for one brief shining moment in 2000 pro) since 1986. Guy behind noise/powerelectronics band XTerminal (after many small stints in jazz, rock, and metal bands). Known for being tactless but honest.

One response »

  1. Pingback: Riese (2010): The Hills Are Alive with the Sound of Poo-sic | Popcorn for Breakfast

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