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Aladdin and His Wonderfully Infernal Device [Kindle Edition]

Tee Morris , Pip Ballantine , Philippa Ballantine
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $1.99

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Book Description

From the imagination behind the award-winning Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences series comes a steampunk novella to a legend from A Thousand and One Arabian Nights.

Aladdin is a street-wise thief that finds himself under the tutelage of a world-renown illusionist. He is escorted deep into the deserts in search of a treasure beyond his wildest dreams, and discovers instead something far more valuable—a destiny.


Product Details

  • File Size: 187 KB
  • Print Length: 40 pages
  • Publisher: ImagineThat! Studios (February 19, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007BEGGAQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #451,785 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic story in a steampunk world February 24, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Generally, I'm not a fan of new updates to classic tales, but this again proves that it's not the tale that makes it worth it, it's the one that tells it. Generally these mashups put a thin veneer of updates on a strong original story, but this takes a relatively weak existing plot and turns it into something wonderful. It's also refreshing to see steampunk that's not set in England. There is a whole other world that was in existence during the rein of Victoria, after all.

This is highly recommended for any who like steampunk, any who like strong characters and rich scenes, and any fans of Tee's other works.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Retelling a Classic With a Fresh Genre March 15, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Certain stories have the ability to slip off their old dresses and put on a new genre. It helps if they're related, if the core story can be extracted without beheading the center of what makes the story work. Tee manages to do this with a retelling of one of the classic tales from The Book of One Thousand and One Nights (Arabian Nights), Aladdin, in his short story Aladdin and His Wonderfully Infernal Device.

I've been a fan of Tee's since listening to Billibub Baddings and the Case of the Singing Sword, and I was glad to make last year's Pheonix Rising the first steampunk novel I've read. Aladdin and His Wonderfully Infernal Device continues Tee's work into steampunk and weird tech of an age that never was. It's a wonderful retelling of the Aladdin story, slipping in steam tech in replacement of much of the magic from the story.

Despite this, the story doesn't lose any sense of wonder or the mystical nature of the hunt for the lamp. This isn't to say there isn't magic. Avoiding spoilers, but there is a certain level of high tech that crosses the border into magic to the Victorian area perspective we've read into. In another story, this would be jarring, perhaps even story breaking, but we're familiar with the ultimate cosmic power of the genie of the lamp. When the construct of the lamp has great transformative and manipulative powers we accept it and keep moving on with the story.

The story does have a sense of the Disney Aladdin feel, and that may be because of the section of the Aladdin story covered. It could easily have continued on through the story, using a modified personal rotocopter for two for a night time flight, the return of the evil magician, etc. Instead it ends at a good point before it gets too long of mimicking the original piece.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, but quite rushed February 25, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
I was very disappointed to see that it only covers the first part of Aladdin’s adventures, because the steampunk elements go very well with the magical world in which the story is set.

Aladdin is a thief, but he doesn’t steal just about anything. He is working on a mysterious device, and the last piece he needs is a brass gear. After a close escape from the Sultan’s guards, he is approached by the great illusionist Jaha, who presents himself as his uncle. Aladdin takes him home to his mother and Jaha promises both of them that he will take the boy as an apprentice. What I really liked as opposed to the original tale was that Aladdin’s mother is so wise. She is sure that her husband never had a brother, but she is also sure that Jaha will lead Aladdin to a great destiny, even though it might be different from what the boy expects.

Jaha takes Aladdin to the magic cave and uses four spheres to blow up the hatch. Then he gives the boy instructions on how to find the brass lamp, and lowers him into the deep darkness. However, in Tee Morris’ story, the magician doesn’t give him a magic ring. Aladdin finds the lamp, takes it, and turns back to the opening, where Jaha pretends that he can’t pull him up. This is when Aladdin’s infernal device is revealed: it is a “magic carpet” or, more exactly, a homemade ornithopter made up of clockwork gears and rug scraps. He flies close to the surface, but refuses to give Jaha the lamp, and the magician seals the cave, leaving Aladdin to die.

The story is pretty similar to the original tale, and the greatest surprise is the jinni. His name is Giles, and he’s actually a complicated machine made of a wild collection of rods, gears and boilers.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Forget what you know, Enjoy what you get April 5, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Growing up in the Disney Generation, that group of 20 to 30 year olds who were soothed by parents poping the household collection of Disney VHS into the VCR on a daily basis, I find myself always expecting something more. Even the true tales (Not Disney versions but the original writing) of classics like Beauty and the Beast, the Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Etc don't seem to hold up to what I use to consider the standard set by Disney.

I read Morris' Aladdin and His Wonderfully Infernal Device a second time just to take it in again and hopefully as it's own story to best give this work a review of itself not as a comparison to another. This tale is amazing steampunk and a great story by itself. Giles is a character that I would wish to see again in a truly original setting. I wish Morris had chosen to give this tale more time and push it out of the novella range. In short, this is a tale I was happy to buy and I would definately purchase the next steampunk fairy tale Morris chooses to write.

My reasoning for a 4 star rating is the high number of grammatical and formatting errors.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Getting there...
Fun, quick romp with a genie automaton. I noted a few typos, and there were instances where I was confused and the establishing details weren't all there (Example: Aladdin's in the... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars A unique twist on a classic
Tee has taken the story of Aladdin to new heights. Adding a Steampunk twist to this classic is a stoke...er, stroke of genius. He just needs to add a bit more fuel to the fire.
Published 6 months ago by Alan Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars more please
Great story. I just wanted more. It was just too short. But very well tolded . So what are you going to steam up next?
Published 9 months ago by Robert B. Johnston
5.0 out of 5 stars ALADDIN AND HIS WONDERFULLY INFERNAL DEVICE
A WONDERFUL SPIN ON THE OLD STORY OF ALADDIN. A WONDERFUL TWIST THAT LENDS CREDENCE TO THIS STORY OF OLD! Special thanks to Tee Morris and the vivid story. Thanks!
Published 11 months ago by Ron_46725
2.0 out of 5 stars It needs an editor
And a proofreader. Not ready for publication. A disappointment at best. Why was it released prematurely? I'll think twice before I buy another from this author.
Published 16 months ago by SteveF
5.0 out of 5 stars too short!
I want to know more! Nice merging of history, fable, and magic. I particularly liked the reference to Robert Houdin.
Published 17 months ago by Amazon Customer
3.0 out of 5 stars I'm torn
I'm torn on this one. Normally I'm more than fine with sending steampunk to settings it hasn't been to before, but in this case I don't think it does enough to advance or enhance... Read more
Published 20 months ago by Scott A. Kinkade
3.0 out of 5 stars Aladdin
Captivating but way too short. Certainly leaves space for a series. The story was just developing was over. Too short.
Published 21 months ago by Xena1002
3.0 out of 5 stars Aladdin Unveiled?
The only reason I gave this one 3 stars is it was too short. So what was I thinking? This amounts to a re-telling of the tale of Aladdin in a steampunk genre, and it was... Read more
Published 23 months ago by Nonna Bonnonna
3.0 out of 5 stars Steampunk Aladdin
Not long enough, not developed enough, an OK read, but it could have been so much more. The concept was good, but I felt vaguely cheated at the end.
Published 23 months ago by Jennifer R. M. Toplitz
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More About the Author

Tee Morris began his writing career with his 2002 historical epic fantasy, MOREVI The Chronicles of Rafe & Askana. Tee then released in 2004 The Case of The Singing Sword: A Billibub Baddings Mystery which was earned him honors from ForeWord Magazine's Book of the Year Awards. It was in 2005 when his idea -- podcasting a novel -- established him as a pioneer in the Social Media movement, becoming the first author to podcast a book in its entirety. That experience led to the founding of Podiobooks.com (with Evo Terra and Chris Miller), the premier site for podcast literature.

Tee took his collaboration with Evo Terra to print in Podcasting for Dummies (featuring Chuck Tomasi in the Second Edition), and penned other social media titles including All a Twitter (Que Publishing) and Sams Teach Yourself Twitter in 10 Minutes (Pearson Education). Other non-fiction titles Tee has contributed to include BenBella Books's Farscape Forever: Sex, Drugs, and Killer Muppets, the Complete Guide to Writing fantasy series from Dragon Moon Press, and BenBella Books' So Say We All: Collected Thoughts and Opinions of BATTLESTAR GALACTICA.

In 2011 Tee Morris returned to his first love -- fiction -- alongside his wife, Pip Ballantine, with Phoenix Rising: A Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences Novel (Harper Voyager). This title went on to win the 2011 Airship Award for Best Steampunk Literature, and was a finalist (the only steampunk to make the final round in any category) for Goodread's Choice Awards under Best Science Fiction of 2011. 2012 saw the release of The Janus Affair: A Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences Novel (Harper Voyager). The sequel was also a finalist in Goodreads' Choice Awards Best Science Fiction of 2012, and went on to win Steampunk Chronicle's Readers Choice of 2012 for Best Steampunk Literature. In 2013, their companion podcast Tales from the Archives received a Parsec Award for Best Podcast Anthology. Also in that year, Tee and Pip successfully funded via Kickstarter the anthology Ministry Protocol: Thrilling Tales of the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences and The Ministry Initiative, a FATE-core RPG from Galileo Games. 2014 will see the release of Dawn's Early Light: A Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences Novel (Ace Books).

He can still be heard podcasting short fiction with Tales from the Archives, and alongside Pip on The Shared Desk at theshareddesk.com. Find out more about his work and his life at teemorris.com and ministryofpeculiaroccurrences.com.

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