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Lady of Devices: A steampunk adventure novel (Magnificent Devices Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Shelley Adina
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (374 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Book One of the Magnificent Devices series, a novel of 54,000 words.

London, 1889. Victoria is Queen. Charles Darwin’s son is Prime Minister. And steam is the power that runs the world.

At 17, Claire Trevelyan, daughter of Viscount St. Ives, was expected to do nothing more than pour an elegant cup of tea, sew a fine seam, and catch a rich husband. Unfortunately, Claire’s talents lie not in the ballroom, but in the chemistry lab, where things have a regrettable habit of blowing up. When her father gambles the estate on the combustion engine and loses, Claire finds herself down and out on the mean streets of London. But being a young woman of resources and intellect, she turns fortune on its head. It’s not long before a new leader rises in the underworld, known only as the Lady of Devices.

When she meets Andrew Malvern, a member of the Royal Society of Engineers, she realizes her talents may encompass more than the invention of explosive devices. They may help her realize her dreams and his . . . if they can both stay alive long enough to see that sometimes the closest friendships can trigger the greatest betrayals . . .


Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Award-winning author Shelley Adina wrote her first teen novel when she was 13. It was rejected by the literary publisher to whom she sent it, but he did say she knew how to tell a story. That was enough to keep her going through the rest of her adolescence, a career, a move to another country, a B.A. in Literature, an M.F.A. in Writing Popular Fiction, and countless manuscript pages. Between books, Shelley loves traveling, playing the piano and Celtic harp, making period costumes, and spoiling her flock of rescued chickens.

Product Details

  • File Size: 394 KB
  • Print Length: 258 pages
  • Publisher: Moonshell Books, Inc. (May 30, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0053CYXS0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,029 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
53 of 57 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lady of Devices is a steampunk treat! July 3, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Poor Lady Claire, seventeen and not giving a fig about presenting herself into Victorian society, she's such a frustration to her dear mother, but Claire could not possibly care less about the plans that her mother has for her future. Claire's more interested in blowing things up in the chemistry labs and learning to drive the family's Landau. Lady Claire longs to attend University to study engineering. She's certain that the future will be in steam driven engines and various other devices. When Claire's father dies, and his company goes bankrupt, the family comes to realize that their cushy live is now over. With Claire's mother and baby brother, the current heir apparent, fleeing to the country, that leaves Claire in charge of selling their London home and letting their servants go.

When a mob of angry investors in Claire's father's now worthless company decide to riot and burn the family home, Lady Claire is forced to flee the streets of London in the family Landau. And that's where Claire's adventure begins for real. Accosted in Jack, the Ripper's Whitechapel area of London, Claire's relieved of her belongings and her beloved Landau. She's left unconscious on the street. That is, until a crew of young street urchins find her. What comes next is a wonderful story of trust, friendship and help the comes from the most unexpected places.

Shelley Adina's opened the door to a Victorian Steampunk world that fascinates us in today's 21st Century. "Lady of Devices", the first of Adina's trilogy in the Magnificent Devices series, is full of wonderful characters from the Lords and Ladies to the charmingly drawn young gang of hoodlums that Claire falls in with. Adina manages to lure us into the steampunk era with joy and excitement.
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69 of 77 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars ok, could have been great October 22, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
So the writing is good, the character development believable, and the world building is detailed. Then why, am I saying this is just an o.k. book? Because the author stretched out what could have been a great book into 3 going on four lousy parts. Seems like every YA author's editor is advising their authors to stretch out books to be the next Twilight. Problem is the cliff hangers are ridiculous, things like "oh I really need to have a conversation with so and so, oh wait he's gone!" O.k. everybody wait another 6 months for the next book. I think so far all the events in the series have happened over a period of months at best. It's a shame, because like I said, this book has so many good points. But the constant stretching at all costs causes the writing to deteriorate significantly, especially by the 3rd book. This author could have had one great book, something that people would have taken seriously. And the world she built is so detailed, a series developed about each of the supporting characters would have been welcomed. Instead, by the time you reach the 3rd book, it's apparent that what ever greatness this once had, it is now only forgettable drivel. Not something you would ever re-read or pass along to any friend you actually like.
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48 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Shockingly good February 18, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I admit it; I'd been avoiding this book. Ever since I devoured Lindsay Buroker's fantastic Emperor's Edge books Amazon has been inundating me with recommendations for steampunk (which is silly; Emperor's Edge peripherally involves steam power, sure, but it is not really steampunk). And I'm not a huge fan of steampunk. Particularly steampunk by authors like Cherie Priest and Gail Carriger.

Finally, though, I gave in and downloaded the sample, and am I ever glad I did. I tore through this and its sequel Her Own Devices in the space of an evening (practically made myself late for an appointment, but finished just in time), and have spent the bulk of my time since recommending it to everyone I meet. I admit; the grocery store attendant looked at me pretty oddly.

The basics: Claire Trevelyan at 17 has the perfect life for her time period. She's the daughter of a powerful British noble in the latter days of Victorian England, steam power and sundry standard steampunk inventions are really taking off, and the worst problem she has is figuring how to convince her mother to let her apply to study engineering instead of making the socially appropriate marriage that is expected of her. But then tragedy strikes; her father, having foolishly invested almost all of their fortune in the non-starter technology of combustion engines (*snork*), loses virtually everything. Her family is forced into exile to their country estates, and through a series of unfortunate events Lady Claire finds herself on the streets.

And then things really kick into gear. Lady of Devices and its sequel are non-stop.
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34 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lady of Devices July 24, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I happened on Lady of Devices by accident, read the Kindle sample and was hooked from the first page. My only disappointment was that it was too short! I could have stayed with Lady Claire and her amazing mind (not afraid of math or sciences-we need more role models like this in our world!) who manages to take her stifling circumstances and become an independent woman. Too often I find YA heroines are lost in their own emotional turmoil and almost nonfunctional. On the contrary, Lady Claire uses her intelligence and moral fiber to craft the beginnings of a very interesting life for herself. An alternative 1890s London comes alive with wonderful characters, from high society to hoodlums, and I found myself charmed and inspired on almost every page. I cannot wait for the sequel.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Great read, the author should write more...
Published 2 days ago by Amazon Customer
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
I liked it, but it was half (or less) a story which cost it a star.
Published 11 days ago by Matticus
5.0 out of 5 stars A Walk Through Ourselves
A wonderful path down the street of what makes us each individual, and a well expressed account of the value in a woman's mind. Read more
Published 23 days ago by April Short
3.0 out of 5 stars entertaining but totally implausible
A Lady falls in with a gang of street hoodlums and agrees to teach them to make an explosive pepper spray mixture in exchange for returning her stolen property? Really? Read more
Published 1 month ago by Kay Ling
2.0 out of 5 stars Probably better than I think it is
Tried reading it, a couple of times, didn't really get into it. Probably better than I think it is... may try again.
Published 1 month ago by Arcade Bear
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun steampunk tale, but feels like only half a novel
Lately I've found myself growing more attached to the genre of steampunk -- stories set in Victorian times or some other era of the past, but with some trappings of higher... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Kenya Starflight
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Pleasantly Unexpected
I thought I knew where this book was going but I was sooo wrong! I love the twists the plot took and the unexpected role the heroine took on. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Aurelas
4.0 out of 5 stars Well written for early teens.
Aimed at early teens, I would guess, and certainly great for anyone who is into the exquisite detail of victorian clothing, or genteel manners and etiquette, or who likes... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Raven
5.0 out of 5 stars Lady of Devices
I choose a rating of 5 stars because the the keep kept you total involved as if you were the character Lady C herself. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Debra M Perkins
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun journey with Claire
I had the good fortune of hearing this author speak at an event, so naturally I became curious about her books. Lady of Devices is a well-researched and enjoyable story. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
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More About the Author

RITA Award-winning author and Christy finalist Shelley Adina wrote her first novel when she was 13. It was rejected by the literary publisher to whom she sent it, but he did say she knew how to tell a story. That was enough to keep her going through the rest of her adolescence, a career, a move to another country, a B.A. in Literature, an M.F.A. in Writing Popular Fiction, and countless manuscript pages. Shelley is a world traveler who loves to imagine what might have been. Between books, she loves playing the piano and Celtic harp, making period costumes, and spoiling her flock of rescued chickens.


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